Spring 2023 Grants Awarded: $300,000 to 19 Nonprofits


Total Giving Since 2015 Surpasses $6.4 Million

June 20, 2023


Port Angeles, Washington – First Fed Foundation (formerly First Federal Community Foundation) announced today that it has awarded a total of $300,000 in funding to nonprofits that are bringing housing, help, and hope to community members in Clallam, Jefferson, Kitsap, and Whatcom Counties, and the city of Bellevue.

“Having received 47 applications totaling more than $1.3 million in grant funding requests in this spring cycle, the First Fed Foundation Board is humbled by the depth of need in our communities. We’re honored to support 19 nonprofit organizations that are creatively and effectively addressing those needs,” said Norman J. Tonina, President of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

“From providing affordable housing solutions, to addressing food, housing, and healthcare insecurity, and supporting those in our community who are most vulnerable, our grantee organizations are making a positive, much-needed impact each and every day,” continued Mr. Tonina.

“With our recent grant awards, the Foundation’s giving has exceeded $6.4 million, and continues to align to the vision of our sole donor, First Fed, by investing in projects and programs that foster the well-being and prosperity of our communities,” said Karen McCormick, member of First Fed Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Grants in the Foundation’s spring grant cycle were awarded to:

Housing & Homelessness Grants:

Habitat for Humanity in Whatcom County: $50,000 to fund the first eight townhomes in Mateo Meadows, a 3.48-acre, 30-townhome community in Everson, creating a pathway to homeownership for low-income households comprised of approximately 32 parents and kids.

Kitsap Legal Services: $25,000 for attorney and support staff to provide free legal assistance and representation to low-income tenants at risk of losing their housing.

Community Development Grants:

Bellevue Schools Foundation: $25,000 to provide tuition assistance for 25-35 low-income and/or homeless students, ages 3-5, to attend preschool for a full school day or extended workday.

Bellingham Food Bank: $25,000 to provide those who are menstruating with the period support products they need and cannot afford to purchase.

Forks Community Food Bank: $25,000 to provide milk, eggs, butter, and bread to more than 16,000 families, children, and elderly clients annually.

Olympic Medical Center Foundation: $35,000 to provide low-income patients undergoing cancer treatment with support for rent, utilities, medication, transportation, and other essentials.

Olympic Peninsula YMCA: $25,000 to purchase a walk-in cooler to store perishables used to provide nearly 3,000 food boxes to 175 food-insecure East Jefferson County families during spring, summer, and winter non-school days.

Port Angeles Food Bank: $25,000 to increase the quality and variety of food included in Friday Food Bags provided to 300+ Port Angeles School District students every weekend during the school year.

Community Support Grants:

Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network: $5,000 to support the free monthly Teen Night program, offering confidence-building, creative, and social opportunities for 60 to 80 youth throughout the 2023-2024 school year.

Cares of Washington: $7,500 to support ten new low-income, homeless, and/or disabled clients to become involved in their Kitsap community, develop relevant work skills, secure employment, and build financial and personal self-sufficiency.

Dove House Advocacy Services: $7,500 to provide emergency food and basic necessities to Jefferson County victims of crime and abuse who are in recovery and/or experiencing crisis.

East Jefferson County Conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul: $7,500 to respond to the emergency needs of low-income individuals and families, helping them meet their most basic needs and retain their homes and their jobs.

Helen Haller Elementary School: $5,000 for the Books for Summer reading program, which provides six free, self-selected books to 500 Port Angeles students, helping to prevent the slide in academic skills and close the achievement gap.

Kathleen Sutton Fund: $5,000 to support women living in Clallam, Jefferson, and Kitsap Counties with transportation costs incurred in undergoing treatment for cancer.

Kitsap Cancer Services: $7,500 to provide 20 low-income patients undergoing cancer treatment with grants for transportation, medications, copays, pre-treatment emergency dental care, groceries, rent, utilities, and other basic needs.

Kitsap Immigrant Assistance Center: $5,000 to support the Emergency Assistance Fund, providing rent and food to low-income immigrant families unable to access other assistance options.

Max Higbee Center: $5,000 to increase program staff and provide a higher level of support and care to the current 146 participants who are living with developmental disabilities in Whatcom County.

National Alliance on Mental Illness of Whatcom County: $5,000 to support a bilingual Community Outreach Specialist who will engage members of the Latinx community in taking part in no-cost mental wellness initiatives.

Operation Homefront Inc.: $5,000 to support the Back-to-School Brigade, providing backpacks and school supplies to 350 military children in Kitsap County.


About First Fed Foundation:

First Fed Foundation is a private charitable corporation that began making grants in 2015, thanks to a generous gift valued at nearly $12 million from the parent company of First Fed, when the bank was converted to a publicly traded company.

“Committed to supporting nonprofit, tribal, and government agencies that provide critical, timely assistance, while also building a brighter future, we are proud and privileged to have contributed $6,401,500 since 2015,” noted Jan Simon, the Foundation’s Executive Director.

Intended to create broad impact that benefits low-to-moderate-income, disadvantaged, and/or marginalized persons or families in Clallam, Jefferson, Kitsap, and Whatcom Counties, and the city of Bellevue, the Foundation’s giving to date has been allocated to the following funding priorities:

     $1,606,300 to organizations addressing homelessness and the availability of and access to affordable housing.

     $2,540,000 to community development projects.

     $1,015,200 to organizations providing a wide array of critical, life-enhancing support to our communities.

     $1,020,000 to efforts that stimulate and support economic development.

     $220,000 to organizations that addressed hardships caused and exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.


About First Fed, the Foundation’s sole donor:

First Fed is a local community bank in Washington serving customers and communities since 1923, with 16 locations in Clallam, Jefferson, King, Kitsap, and Whatcom Counties. First Fed is a subsidiary of First Northwest Bancorp (FNWB), a holding company for the bank and other investments.

First Fed has a 100-year history of investing in its local communities. With a vision of creating well-being and prosperity for its employees, customers, and communities, First Fed and First Fed Foundation contributed over $1.3 million to nonprofits in 2022. Also in 2022, First Fed employees donated nearly 6,900 hours of volunteer service in the communities First Fed serves.

For more information, contact Jan Simon, Executive Director, at jan.simon@firstfedcf.org, 360-417-3112 or visit www.FirstFedFoundation.org.


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