(Youngstown/Warren, OH) – Three Valley foundations that have been working together on COVID-19 grantmaking issued a final call for proposals coming through the joint COVID-19 Response and Stabilization Application. The Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley, The Raymond John Wean Foundation and The Youngstown Foundation set Friday, April 2, 2021 at 5 p.m. as the final deadline for this grant opportunity, and applicants are encouraged to submit requests as soon as possible.

One year ago, the foundations released the joint application, which leverages grant dollars and connects grant seekers directly with all three foundations for quick funding decisions. Through the end of 2020, the foundations had jointly invested more than $2.4 million in the Mahoning Valley through 150 grants aimed at addressing both crisis response and stabilization efforts.

The application allows charitable organizations to submit the same proposal to any one of the foundations or all three at the same time, and the link will be available on all three foundation websites through April 2: www.cfmv.org; www.rjweanfdn.org; www.youngstownfoundation.org.

A declining number of grant applications and the shift in focus of local nonprofit organizations from crisis relief and stabilization back to more traditional operations were among the catalysts for closing the common application.

“Based on our commitment to do better, we’re reducing what we ask for; providing longer term and more flexible funding and paying much needed attention to Black and Hispanic/Latinx led organizations,” said Jennifer Roller, Wean Foundation president. “These positive changes will begin in quarter two, with invites to grantees funded prior to the pandemic. An expanded reach to other nonprofits will follow.”

After the April 2 deadline, grant seekers should visit each foundation’s website or contact staff at each entity for more information on grant strategies throughout 2021.

“We want to continue addressing the impacts of COVID-19 while also looking forward,” said Shari Harrell, CFMV president. “The Community Foundation will roll out several grant opportunities in the next week, so local organizations will have access to CFMV funding through those processes.”

Staff and board members of the three organizations expressed their gratitude for the partnership of

grantees in making this common application work over the past year. The Community Foundation, The Wean Foundation and The Youngstown Foundation intend to continue working closely to combat COVID-19’s negative impacts, along with other important issues facing our community.

“Closing the Joint COVID-19 application in no way diminishes local philanthropy’s prioritization of addressing the growing and devastating impact of this pandemic on our community,” added Lynnette Forde, President of The Youngstown Foundation. “We remain committed to the pursuit of collaborative efforts to uplift the community.”


(Warren, September 14, 2018) – In a third quarter marked by a flurry of activity, The Raymond John Wean Foundation is sharing several exciting updates that include Community Investment awards, ongoing resident engagement in the Mahoning Valley and an expanded staff.

At its September Board of Directors meeting, Economic Action Group (EAG) was awarded funding in support of its commercial property revitalization work. EAG’s mission is to provide equitable access to economic support services for public, private and nonprofit stakeholders to continue revitalization and investment in downtown Youngstown.

This Fall marks the 10-year anniversary of the Foundation’s successful, resident-driven Neighborhood SUCCESS Grants Program. Developed to improve the quality of life in Warren and Youngstown neighborhoods, grants of $500 to $5000 have been made to 485 resident-led projects representing a decade of investment totaling more than $1.6 million.

“Becoming a viable and credible resource to the community goes beyond grant disbursements. It’s evident that the credit goes to our neighborhood leadership,” said Wean Foundation President Jennifer Roller. “The program’s grantees represent 236 organizations developing resident leadership, promoting collaboration and building upon existing community resources.”

Additionally, the Foundation’s Emerging Leaders Program will launch its 2018 sessions with an opening retreat this weekend. This class of emerging community leaders will participate in a three-month program designed to cultivate leadership and foster radical imagination, building their capacity for realized change. Participants represent a broad range of Mahoning Valley organizations, including The Links, Inc., Trumbull County Land Bank, United Returning Citizens, Youngstown Areas Goodwill Industries and Inspiring Minds Warren.

Since 2013, the Emerging Leaders Program has developed the unique potential of 61 resident leaders. Past participants continue to collaborate through an alumni association; additional training; civic engagement and volunteerism; public leadership appointments; and entrepreneurial endeavors.

The Wean Foundation is also pleased to announce a new staff addition, Tiara Williams. Serving as Program Associate beginning mid-September, Williams joins the Foundation after working most recently with Inspiring Minds Youngstown. Her focus will be supporting the health and vitality of the Foundation’s capacity building initiatives, its various grant programs and administration. Williams is a graduate of Youngstown State University where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology in 2018.