At its February meeting in Tucson, Arizona, the Elks National Foundation Board of Trustees approved appropriations and distributions for the 2016 fiscal year totaling a record $28.95 million. Click here for a printable fact sheet.
Want more? Click here to listen to an exciting episode of Midday with the ENF—the Foundation's monthly podcast hosted by Director Jim O'Kelley and Assistant DIrector Debbie Doles—dedicated to these record distributions.
- Community Investments Program
Appropriated $9.77 million for the Community Investments Program to invest directly in Lodge communities. Community Investments Program projects have a significant and lasting impact on areas where Elks live and work. New this year, Promise Grants will be worth $2,500 each. And, every Lodge in which more than 15 percent of its members donated to the ENF in 2014-15 will be eligible for a bonus of $500 when it achieves the GER’s per-member-giving goal in 2015-16. That means they’ll be eligible for a Gratitude Grant of $2,500 instead of the standard $2,000.
- State Grants
Granted $8.72 million to the state Elks associations through State Charities Grants, Special Project Grants and Bonus Grants, which help fund each state’s major charitable projects. These grants help fund each state's major charitable projects, which include aid for people with disabilities, cancer research, children's hospitals, youth camps, and safe havens for abused families. In addition, portions of these grants will help fund state Drug Awareness, Hoop Shoot, Veterans Service and scholarship programs, as well as other projects that best extend a state's philanthropic outreach.
Today’s Elks scholars can be tomorrow’s Elks. Their ENF scholarships are the first step, but we need to engage them as part of our Elks family by including them in Lodge activities and volunteer projects. This year, we will fund three Elks Scholar Service Trips for up to 20 scholars each. We believe the opportunity to come together and forge bonds that these scholars will forever associate with the Elks will help with our long-term goal of turning Elks scholars into Elks. And of course, important causes will benefit from these scholars’ service expertise, all in the name of the Elks. Here is a breakdown of the ENF’s three main scholarships.
- Most Valuable Student Scholarship Competition
Designated $2.74 million to fund the Most Valuable Student scholarship program, which includes 500 four-year scholarships. The contest features 20 top awards—10 for males, 10 for females—of at least $20,000. The 20 top winners will attend the MVS Leadership Weekend in Chicago, where they will interview for the $30,000, $40,000 and $50,000 MVS scholarships. The remaining 480 runners-up will receive fifth-place scholarships of $4,000.
- ENF Legacy Awards
Designated $1.1 million for the Legacy Awards scholarship program. This includes 250 four-year, $4,000 scholarships for children and grandchildren of Elks.
- Emergency Educational Fund Grants
Reserved $322,450 for the Emergency Educational Grants program. Emergency Educational Grants are one-year educational grants to the children of deceased or totally disabled Elks.
- Elks National
Hoop Shoot Free Throw Program
Granted $924,070 to fund the Hoop Shoot, guiding youth to compete, connect and succeed, and encouraging participants to lead healthy and active lives. Stay tuned for a new Hoop Shoot app developed in 2015-16 to better engage contestants.
- Elks Drug Awareness Program
Appropriated $817,890 to completely fund the Elks Drug Awareness Program, which promotes constructive and cooperative solutions to youth substance abuse through education.
- Elks National Veterans Service Commission
Granted $1.48 million to the Order’s Veterans Service Program, which provides aid and comfort for America’s veterans. This includes a 28.6 percent increase in Freedom Grant funding.
- Elks Veterans Memorial Maintenance
Granted $638,520 to maintain the Elks Veterans Memorial in Chicago.
- Reserved $125,000 for miscellaneous grants, including the Gunther & Lee Weigel Medical School Scholarship.
- Fundamental Appropriations
Appropriated $2.29 million to fund the Foundation’s administrative and fundraising expenses. At 7.9 percent, our fundamental expenses are far below the Better Business Bureau’s standard for charities of no more than 35 percent of total spending.
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