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Cap Times’ Evjue Foundation donates $375,000, much of it to support food programs

Cap Times’ Evjue Foundation donates $375,000, much of it to support food programs

Food Insecurity TOC photo July 22 2020 (copy)

The Cap Times' Evjue Foundation has awarded funds to 14 groups, the largest of which was $85,000 for Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, shown here in July 2020.

The board of the Evjue Foundation, the charitable arm of The Capital Times, recently approved $375,000 in grants to support seven local food programs and seven other local causes.

The biggest single grant, for $85,000, went to the Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin.

“We are incredibly grateful for the ongoing generosity of the Evjue Foundation,” said Michelle Orge, Second Harvest president and CEO.

“This funding is a critical component in our ability to meet the food needs of so many in our community who will need support in the coming months as we recover from the pandemic.”

The Evjue board also approved grants to other programs that provide food assistance, including $15,000 for NewBridge, and $10,000 each for the Badger Prairie Needs Network, the River Food Pantry, the Middleton Outreach Ministry, St. Vincent DePaul and the Mellowhood Foundation.

The board also approved grants of $25,000 each to support the work of the Wisconsin Latino Chamber of Commerce, the Madison Black Chamber of Commerce and the Urban League of Greater Madison.

“With your investment we can continue to help Latino-owned businesses rebuild and mobilize during these uncertain times,” said Jessica Cavazos, president and CEO of the Latino chamber.

“Why is this $25,000 investment so important for Latino businesses in Madison? To show the Latino business community that they matter.”

Cavazos and Camille Carter, president and CEO of the Black chamber, said the Evjue Foundation money would help their organizations build capacity to better serve member businesses as well as to help new businesses as the community emerges from the pandemic.

The Evjue board also approved three grants totaling $100,000 to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, including $50,000 to help the Odyssey Project meet the technology and other basic needs of its low-income adult students and their families.

Another $30,000 was approved for student assistance grants to help eligible students facing food and housing insecurity and other pandemic-related financial stressors, while $20,000 was approved for a writing assistance program providing no-cost, one-to-one support for underserved community members seeking help with job applications, resumes, letters and more.

The other $50,000 in grants was directed to the Madison Metropolitan School District. Of that, $25,000 will provide assistance with child-care fees for children of essential workers — most from low-income households — and the other $25,000 will provide ready-made meals for students during the spring and summer as the pandemic continues.

Because of the pandemic, the Evjue board did not take grant applications this cycle, instead choosing to selectively target areas of exceptional need, said Paul Fanlund, editor and publisher of The Capital Times.

Moving forward, the board will begin accepting grant applications at within the next two weeks, and those grant decisions will occur in June, Fanlund added.

The Evjue Foundation Board has 15 members. Seven represent The Capital Times Co.: Jim Lussier, Laura Lussier Lee, Dawn Lussier, Nancy Gage, Clayton Frink, Dave Zweifel and Fanlund. Four directors represent the UW Foundation: Anne Lucke, Marion Brown, Brenda Gonzalez and Eric Salisbury. The final four represent the Madison Community Foundation: Bob Sorge, Jim Bradley, Tom Linfield and Therese Gulbransen. Pam Wells is the foundation’s executive director.

The foundation’s grants are made possible by the will of the late William T. Evjue, the founder of The Capital Times, who directed that proceeds from his controlling stock in the newspaper go to the Evjue Charitable Trust. The will requires that the trust, in turn, direct proceeds to the foundation to be distributed to worthy causes and organizations throughout the community.

In the years since Mr. Evjue’s death in 1970, the foundation has provided about $70 million to hundreds of charitable, cultural and educational organizations in the Dane County area.

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