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Interstate Bridge Replacement program offers second round of community engagement miniature grants

<strong>Interstate Bridge Replacement program offers second round of community engagement miniature grants</strong>

VANCOUVER, Wash. – The bi-state Interstate Bridge Replacement program is opening its second round of small-scale, low-barrier grants for community-based organizations. Eligible organizations may apply through Sept. 10 for funds to partner with the IBR program and support community engagement efforts with the members they serve. 

The IBR program’s first small-scale, low-barrier grant program was implemented in 2021 to cultivate relationships with local community groups and assist them in expanding community engagement efforts with equity-priority communities. This second round of small-scale, low-barrier grants will provide community organizations resources at varying levels in exchange for support extending the IBR program’s outreach through their networks. Eligible organizations do not need to be transportation focused to qualify for funding and organizations that received funding through the first round of grants are welcome to apply again.

“Meaningful and intentional feedback from those who have typically been excluded from the process of designing and building large infrastructure projects is essential to the success of this program,” said Greg Johnson, IBR program administrator. “We recognize and value the trusting relationships that exist between community-based organizations and equity-priority communities, and we believe it is a ‘win-win’ to collaborate with these organizations to extend our reach and be certain everyone has the opportunity to have their voice heard.” 

Equity-priority communities for the IBR program are defined as those who experience or have experienced discrimination and exclusion based on identity, such as: 

  • BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color).
  • People with disabilities.
  • Communities with limited English proficiency.
  • Lower income and houseless individuals and families.
  • Immigrants and refugees.
  • Young people and older adults.

Organizations that serve equity-priority communities in or near the IBR program area (in Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington), are invited to participate. Those selected must have multiple modes of engagement with their member base (social media, email, phones and/or newsletters) and a history or experience in community organizing. Recipients must also be a legally incorporated nonprofit organization for at least one year at the time of application. Grants will be awarded in exchange for conducting outreach and engagement activity that is focused on the IBR program.

More information and the grant program application are available online. The application period is open through Sunday, Sept. 10. Questions about the grant program or other topics may be sent to info@interstatebridge.org

Free, temporary internet access is available to those who do not have broadband service in locations throughout the state. To find the nearest Drive-In WiFi Hotspot visit: www.commerce.wa.gov/building-infrastructure/washington-state-drive-in-wifi-hotspots-location-finder/

Free WiFi access in Portland is available at these locations: 

  • Peninsula Park Community Center, 700 N. Rosa Parks Way, Portland, Ore., 97217
  • Matt Dishman Community Center, 77 NE Knott Street, Portland, Ore., 97212
  • St. Johns Community Center, 8427 N. Central Street, Portland, Ore., 97203
  • Kenton Library, 8226 N. Denver Avenue, Portland, Ore., 97217
  • St. Johns Library, 7510 N. Charleston Avenue, Portland, Ore., 97203

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