Out of 19 total applications, these twelve projects were selected for the Summer/Fall 2021 round of Wellbeing Microgrants. In creative and exceptional ways, they each focus on aspects of community, environment, learning, health, and economic opportunity.
Many respond to the issues our communities are facing in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic to promote community connections, storytelling, mental health support, and more. Selection was based on the Evaluation Criteria listed below.
Even prior to COVID-19, Santa Monicans were experiencing issues of loneliness and isolation, health challenges, decreasing sense of ability to influence local government, and inequities across race, age and gender. We seek to fund projects that address these issues uncovered by the Wellbeing Index, and likely exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. We identified specific prompts within each dimension of the Wellbeing Index and funded resident-lead initiatives to improve one or more of these areas.
COVID has made it difficult for people to stay connected. In particular with the holidays approaching, we are interested in supporting solutions to issues of isolation and loneliness.
Even before the pandemic, Santa Monicans were worried about paying rent or mortgages. While economic issues require big solutions, microgrants can spark small economic growth for individuals and communities that have a big impact. You might apply to cover your own skills training to increase employment options, or to kickstart a new business.
At the top of mind nowadays is our collective health - both physical and mental. A microgrant might support public health efforts or a series to decrease daily stress.
Many have taken up gardening or environmental sustainability efforts as a way to take action during times of uncertainty. Microgrants can encourage neighbors to take an active role in on Santa Monica's environmental progress.
Arts, cultural opportunities, and social justice and equity initiatives have sprung up during COVID. Microgrants can provide new learning opportunities in your community.