WLCF: A foundation for giving

The Western Lane Community Foundation (WLCF) was established in 1973 as a 501(c)(3),tax exempt non-profit, created for the purpose of receiving, administering and distributing charitable finds for the benefit of Western Lane County. It currently has more than $7 million in assets.


WLCF selects qualified recipients for funding, based on need, in the form of grants, scholarships and donations for specific projects. It serves Florence, Mapleton, Dunes City and Deadwood, Ore.

The foundation’s mission is to improve life throughout Western Lane County by encouraging philanthropic activity in the region. Grants are awarded in the areas of education, medicine and science, the arts and social and civic services.  The foundation awarded $120,000 in grants and scholarships in 2018.

Grant applications for the 2020 grant cycle will be accepted by the WLCF between Oct. 1, 2019, and Jan. 15, 2020. Grant requests and awards vary greatly in amount, with a range from $100 to around $5,000, depending on the nature of the grant project and funds available for distribution.

The amount available for distribution each year varies based on the performance of the invested portfolio of discretionary funds.

WLCF President Jim Grano believes the financial support provided to local groups and individuals can be transformative.

“With the grants and scholarships we distribute each year, the lives of individuals and families in our communities, and the organizations that support them, are given a meaningful boost, providing an upwards direction for the present and into the future — all due to the foresight of the foundation’s donors over 40 years,” he said.

Community members representing 27 local non-profit organizations, the WLCF Board of Directors and the Rotary Club of Florence met on March 13 at the Florence Events Center to attend the WLCF 2018 Foundation Grant Awards Program to recognize this year’s recipients.

Grano and Grant Program Chair Nancy Walker introduced each recipient and presented the various nonprofit organizations with their checks. These checks represent fulfillment of the WLCF’s ongoing mission of supporting projects or programs providing needed services or facilities for which public funds are not available and which contribute to the cultural, economic, educational and social betterment of the community.

One of the organizations that received financial support from WLCF this grant cycle, and an excellent example of the importance of the assistance provided by the fund, is Siuslaw Outreach Services (SOS).

SOS received a grant of $5,000 to provide resources for needy individuals and families. The funds were used to provide those who are homeless with rain gear and shower and laundry vouchers, as well as provide emergency vouchers for families who are at immediate risk of becoming homeless to help them remain in their homes.

The scholarship component of the grant monies awarded by WLCF is also important for young scholars in the community. Scholarships are available for traditional four-year colleges as well as community colleges and approved trade schools.

For more information about WLCF, visit www.wlcfonline.org.