City awards nearly $1.65 million to support neighborhood-initiated projects

Highland Park Elementary, WS Senior Center, and Pathfinder K-8 all get some funding

Mayor Ed Murray and the Seattle City Council announced Aug. 11 nearly $1.65 million in matching funds will go to support neighborhood-initiated projects across the city. Forty-three community groups received awards from Seattle Department of Neighborhoods’ Neighborhood Matching Fund Program for projects as diverse as an Afro-Latino arts education program to the creation of welcoming gateways to neighborhoods.

Projects getting support from the Small and Simple fund in West Seattle include:

  • The site plan for Highland Park Elementary School awarded to Friends of Highland Park Elementary

Facilitate a planning process to redesign the school yard to have a creative and engaging play space; and to learn how to work across any cultural, ethnic, and language barriers in our diverse neighborhood and build on our community strength.

  • Award Amount $25,000
  • Pledged Match Amount $15,000

  • The purchase and installation of a Stop 'n Shop HVAC system for the Senior Center of West Seattle

Purchase and install an HVAC system for the Senior Center's thrift store which funds 24% of the Center's budget and serves 4,000 seniors annually.

  • Award Amount $25,000
  • Pledged Match Amount $32,060

The Neighborhood Matching Fund recipients received awards from the Large Projects Fund (for projects up to $100,000) and the 2nd round of the Small and Simple Projects Fund (for projects up to $25,000). These cash awards go to neighborhood groups committed to fostering and building a better community. In total, the awards range from $3,523 to $100,000, and communities have pledged to match the city’s $1,648,289 million contribution with resources valued at nearly $2.9 million.

From the Large Project Fund monies will flow to:

  • The Pathfinder Playground Construction at the Pathfinder K-8 School
  • Award Amount $100,000.00
  • Pledged Match Amount $182,650.00

“The Neighborhood Matching Fund demonstrates the city’s commitment to provide concrete ways to help community members make Seattle such a vibrant place to live,” said Mayor Murray. “In order to initiate these projects, neighbors have to connect with each other to create a common vision. The Matching Fund provides the opportunity, and our community members turn their creative ideas and energy into reality. Since this program started 26 years ago, thousands of projects have happened across the city.”

Recipients of the Neighborhood Matching Fund match their awards through a combination of locally raised money, donated materials and expertise, and volunteer labor. “I am always impressed by the dedication of the volunteers who work so hard to make these projects happen,” said Councilmember Sally Bagshaw, chair of the Seattle Public Utilities and Neighborhoods Committee. “These volunteers are committed to making our neighborhoods better, and we are all richer due to their efforts.”

For the Large Projects Fund awards, the Citywide Review Team (CRT) recommended the projects to the Mayor and City Council through an open competitive application process. Made up of volunteer representatives from each of the 13 neighborhood districts, plus four at-large community members, the CRT reviews applications, interviews applicants, and makes funding recommendations. The applications are also reviewed by members from district councils.

The Large Projects Fund awards up to $100,000 and is open for applications once a year. The Small and Simple Projects Fund, which has three opportunities to apply annually, awards up to $25,000. The next deadline is October 6, 2014.

Created to promote and support neighborhood-based, self-help projects, the Neighborhood Matching Fund is managed by Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. Since the program began 26 years ago, the Fund has awarded approximately $50 million with a community match of more than $71 million to thousands of events and projects around the city. To learn more about the Fund, visit www.seattle.gov/neighborhoods/nmf/.

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