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CFO Awards $120,000 to Partnerships Addressing Community 'Red Flags'

Community Foundation of the Ozarks


The Community Foundation of the Ozarks presented five agencies $120,000 in grants to tackle challenges facing the region.

The grants reward what the Community Foundation calls “collective impact efforts.”  There are five partnerships, which represent over 25 organizations, and they're basing their efforts on the annual Community Focus Report, which highlights “red flag” issues facing Springfield and Greene County.

Bridget Dirks of CFO told KSMU the grants help tackle specific problems, even long after the money is awarded.

“Many of the programs that were originally funded by collective impact continue on and are part of the main programmatic work of these agencies,” she said.

This year's recipients include Better Life in Recovery for substance abuse and mental health, Council of Churches of the Ozarks for kids' education programs, Geek Foundation for IT certification program, Safe and Sober for its anti-vaping initiative, and the Watershed Committee of the Ozarks to teach high schoolers how to grow native plants.

Recipients were awarded the grants in a ceremony at the Watershed Center Wednesday.

The grant was distributed as follows:

Better Life in Recovery - $24,810

Council of Churches of the Ozarks - $26,190

The Geek Foundation - $24,000

Safe and Sober, Inc. - $20,000

Watershed Committeee of the Ozarks - $25,000

Josh Conaway is a graduate of Missouri State University with a B.A. in Political Science and an M.A. in International Affairs. He works as a news reporter and announcer at KSMU. His favorite part of the job is exploring the rich diversity of the Ozarks and meeting people with interesting stories to share. He has a passion for history and running.