Bridgeland Riverside Community Hall Mural Project // Courtney Hare
In April 2014, The Calgary Foundation, in partnership with Calgary Economic Development, awarded five groups with $5,000 Soul of the City Neighbour Grants. This film is their story of how they used the grant to bring together their communities, enrich their neighbourhoods and embody the soul of our city.
The Calgary Foundation has been providing grassroots grants since 1999.
Neighbour Grants, our first grassroots granting program, has helped hundreds of
community associations, faith groups, school communities, and charitable
organizations build community gardens, paint neighbourhood murals, celebrate
diversity and belonging, and lead many other kinds of projects to strengthen the
fabric of neighbourhood and community life.
Stepping Stoneswas added in 2006, thanks to a partnership
with First Calgary Financial, to help even more Calgarians bring their
project ideas to life, from neighbourhood knitting circles and bike swaps to
free family carnivals that raise awareness about local poverty and community info
sessions on how to vote.
The kinds of things groups do with their grassroots grants
vary tremendously. What stays the same:
Projects are led by volunteers in their ordinary
active-citizen lives. This isn't about a professional group providing programs.
It's about people organizing amongst themselves for the betterment of their
community, often in collaboration with charities and other groups.
Projects are small-scale and focus on involving
people across the diversity of the community.
Projects open up new opportunities for people,
such as new skills, experiences of working together, and ongoing ways to stay
involved in neighbourhood or community life.
Projects give the chance for new leadership to
learn more about the field of grassroots grantmaking, check out the resources
of the Grassroots Grantmakers network.