Throughout western Oregon we see many of our congregations engaged in ministry designed to alleviate the suffering of our under served populations. We also find individuals and churches who attempt to address the systemic causes of poverty. To help support these efforts, several decades ago our Diocese established the Fund for the Poor and Homeless. The Fund receives all of its monies from generous donations to the Thanksgiving Offering and baskets raffled at our Convention. Every dollar given to the Fund goes directly to support our congregation’s ministries in the community.
The Commission on Poverty and Homelessness solicits grant requests in the spring and disburses funds in early August. This Fund supports many projects, including food pantries, community gardens, medical clinics, and homeless shelters. The Fund especially seeks to support new ministries that involve children and youth, involve community partners, or display innovative ways of addressing poverty’s many challenges.
We encourage your congregation to assess your current direct-relief and advocacy efforts and to consider ways in which you can be more effective in addressing the needs in your community.
Grants are limited to $1,000 per congregation. The projects must have active parishioner involvement. We especially encourage new requests and ones that try new approaches (such as an after-school program for enriching children’s lives or a language skills program). We do not fund salaries or capital improvements.
The 2018 grant application deadline was July 5. Checks are issued to the sponsoring clergy when grants are made (early August).