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Awesome Amherstburg Foundation looking to provide "microgrants"

The Awesome Foundation Logo

The Awesome Foundation has arrived in Amherstburg.


The Amherstburg chapter of the Awesome Foundation has set up in town with Awesome Amherstburg being based out of the Richmond Centre. The Awesome Foundation is described as “a global community devoted to advancing the interest of awesome in the universe, $1,000 at a time.”


The local chapter has been founded by Jamie Lees and Frank D’Angelo of Jank Media & Design.


“Our aim is to support thinkers, tinkerers and change-makers who will positively impact Amherstburg and Windsor-Essex County,” said D’Angelo.


Lees said they have applied for grants in the past for their own projects in the past and were intrigued when they came across the Awesome Foundation.


D’Angelo said they have always been interested in mentoring and this opportunity allows for them to do that plus support creative ideas from the community.


“What we love is that each chapter is autonomous,” she said. “We can decide what it looks like.”


Each month, the foundation will present a $1,000 “no strings attached” microgrant to bring an idea to fruition. Finalists for a grant will be notified and invited to take the stage at a “pitch night” to give a 90-second pitch of their ideas and answer questions from foundation trustees and the audience.


“Awesome Amherstburg is the 73rd chapter of the foundation, is eager to support local innovators with monthly $1,000 microgrants,” said Lees. “We want innovation.”


People can often hold back on talking about their creative ideas but D’Angelo said if they are pitched, it can create networking opportunities without the applicants knowing that’s what they are doing.


D’Angelo added the ideas “can be fun and zany, as long as they are from Amherstburg and Windsor-Essex.”


Awesome Amherstburg is seeking new trustees, whether they be individuals or part of a group.


“There is a deep sense of fulfillment that comes from knowing one is contributing to the success and happiness of others,” said local trustee Kristy LeBlanc.


Trustees are described as “community-minded individuals” from across the county who will contribute $100 per month to make up the $1,000 microgrant.


Venues for “pitch nights” are provided at no charge to allow all funds to go directly into the grant.


Trustee community groups are defined as “families, employees of a business, members of an organization, or groups” and can collectively contribute $100 monthly for a minimum of 12 months. These groups do not have voting rights on chapter activities but can attend “pitch nights” and have a collective vote that help decide the $1,000 grant recipient.


The Awesome Foundation is “looking for awesome ideas from individuals, organizations, teams, classrooms or companies. The idea should be new, exciting, unique, and clever. We support inventive, innovative, and inspiring ideas that positively impact Amherstburg and Windsor-Essex County.”


D’Angelo said high school students as well as adults are encouraged to apply.

For more information on Awesome Amherstburg and how to apply, visit www.awesomefoundation.org/chapters/amherstburg or e-mail amherstburg@awesomefoundation.org.

Awesome Amherstburg Foundation looking to provide "microgrants"

By Ron Giofu

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