Grantmaking Impact

Grantmaking Impact

Through Hutchinson Community Foundation, donors have made millions of dollars of grants—and priceless impact.

Over $86 Million

Total grants since founding

Over $5 Million

Granted in 2020

Fund for Reno County Grants

Established in 1990 by the founding Board of Directors as a permanent resource for the changing needs of Reno County, the Fund for Reno County, formerly known as the Fund for Hutchinson, has awarded over $3 million to more than 170 area organizations and agencies serving Reno County.

In 2021, Hutchinson Community Foundation has awarded Fund for Reno County grants totaling $347,415 to area nonprofits. These organizations provide a wide variety of services and programs in Reno County.

Grant recipient organizations for 2021:


Hutchinson’s Historic Fox Theatre

Award: $8,000

Funding will help the Fox address necessary facility upgrades to the heating, cooling and fire sprinkler systems.

Stage 9

Award: $9,000

Funds will help support the development of a live, multifaceted, historical walking tour centered on downtown Hutchinson titled “If Walls Could Talk.” Stage 9 aims to build on the success of “Talking Tombstones” by collaborating with downtown businesses to tell the stories of Hutchinson’s interesting and historic buildings, connecting residents with their community’s history while also helping sustain the financial operations of Stage 9 and the partnering downtown businesses.

Buhler Public Library

Award: $1,500 per year for 2 years

Second year of a two-year grant for Apollo Biblionix, a host platform that allows the library to be fully automated, increasing service to patrons and making the collection more available during the pandemic and beyond. This bridge funding will allow library staff and board time to secure funding for future years.

Reno County Historical Society

Award: $15,200 per year for 2 years

Second year of a two-year grant funding Reno County Museum’s work, with the assistance of Wichita State University, to digitize the archival collection of Pat Mitchell. The images will be made available online at no additional cost to patrons.


American Rescue Plan Act Resident Engagement Meetings

Award $8,300:

Grant supported the civic engagement process regarding allocation of federal dollars from the American Rescue Plan Act.

City of Hutchinson Human Relations Commission

Award: $20,000 per year for 3 years

First year of a three-year grant to support the programming and educational efforts of the Human Relations Commission through trainings, research, facilitated meetings and support of partnerships and cultural celebrations that promote of diversity, equity and inclusion.

LEADership Coaching for Reno County

Award: $15,000

Part of a funding partnership with United Way of Reno County, the grant provided Kansas Leadership Center training to 26 nonprofit and for-profit organizations to increase the number of people in the community with adaptive leadership and coaching skills and to foster relationships, collaboration and a shared language among participants, creating a community of co-workers to achieve greater impact in Hutchinson and Reno County.

Reno County Entrepreneurship Ecosystem

Award: $90,000 per year for 5 years

Year two of a five-year grant and funding partnership with the City of Hutchinson and Reno County to strengthen and grow the small-business sector through supporting the Entrepreneurship Navigator at StartUp Hutch, efforts to improve mentorship and connection among entrepreneurs, and increased communications that inspire and celebrate innovators.


Boys & Girls Clubs of Hutchinson, Inc.

Award: $3,000

The organization is exploring building a second, permanent facility to house elementary-age programming. Requested funds will cover the cost of a feasibility study.

Boys and Girls Club of Hutchinson, Inc.

Award $3,000:

Examining the Feasibility of a Club Campus: The organization is exploring building a second, permanent facility to house elementary-age programming. Requested funds cover the cost of a feasibility study.

Children’s Emergency Shelter Home

Award: $6,500

Funds will be used to replace the Children’s Emergency Shelter Home’s sewer line from the building’s wall to the sewer main in the alley. The repair will ensure that children in our community in need of services will continue to find support at the shelter home.

Early Education Center, Inc.

Award: $16,130

Early Education Center, Inc. recently became its own nonprofit entity. Grant funds will support brand development reflecting this change, ensuring EEC, Inc.’s continued recognition as a quality, specialized service-provider to community children and their families and strengthening the organization’s ability to effectively fundraise.

Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters Serving Reno County

Award: $5,000

Breaking barriers to Improve the lives of a Generation (BIG!) engages young people through community-based mentoring to help them develop life skills, set goals, explore career possibilities, and strengthen relationships with their Bigs, family and community. Funding will support operations costs of initiating and supporting these matches and provide financial support for planned activities that Bigs and Littles may attend together as they build their relationships.

Resilience Reno County

Award: $5,840 per year for 3 years

Third year of a three-year grant for an AmeriCorps Volunteers In Service to America (VISTA) position supporting the collaborative effort to equip community members and organizations with resources on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and building resilience.

Salthawk Community Support

Award: $10,000 per year for 2 years

Second year of a two-year grant to Salthawk Community Support, a ministry program of Trinity United Methodist Church that receives volunteer and financial support from other churches and community members. The program aims to remove barriers to education for students at Hutchinson High School and Hutchinson Middle School 8 by providing mentoring, character development activities, financial education and basic needs supplies.


Award: $15,000

This project will increase enrollment and decrease drop-out rates among Hutchinson Community College students who have aged out of foster care. It will build partnerships with the college to better support students by advocating for them to connect with campus and community resources and creating a support group to establish a nurturing community and an environment in which they will thrive in their school experience.


Bluestem PACE

Award $5,000:

Funds will allow for the purchase of therapy equipment and furniture for the new Bluestem PACE alternative care site in Hutchinson that will serve program participants throughout Reno County. Bluestem PACE aims to improve the mobility and health of eligible seniors so they can remain safe and independent in their homes for as long as possible.

Cancer Council of Reno County

Award: $5,000

The longtime director of CCRC is preparing to retire. Funding provided through this grant will help cover salaries during a six-to-eight-week transition period when the outgoing and incoming directors will overlap, supporting the council board’s goal of a smooth and effective transition for staff and continued high-quality and caring service for clients.

Prairie Independent Living Resource Center (PILR)

Award: $29,900

To increase capacity through clear communications and higher visibility in the community, this grant will allow PILR to rebrand its organization and refresh its marketing approach and web presence.

Salvation Army of Reno County

Award: $15,000 per year for three years

This grant will provide bridge funding as The Salvation Army increases staffing, allowing continued implementation of their emergency services while increasing opportunities for Reno County individuals and families to participate in the Pathway of Hope program, which helps people reach a level of stability that is necessary to begin moving out of poverty.

Capital Builders Program

Award: $11,250

Hutchinson Community Foundation partnered with fundraising experts at Generous Change to offer an eight-month educational opportunity to assist select nonprofits in developing and executing a fundraising plan. Funding in 2021 was used as challenge grants to spur participants’ fundraising efforts.

New Beginnings, Inc.

Award: $2,300 per year for 2 years

Second year of a two-year grant supporting the purchase of the Blackbaud Tapestry fundraising platform to aid in the development of a formal fundraising program.

Changemakers at Work Grants

Changemakers at Work Grants make a big difference in Reno County Communities through supporting projects that:

  • Bring people together and provide opportunities for positive social interaction and benefit through volunteer work or community-building efforts.
  • Connect people to the environment around them in new ways to increase community pride and identity.
  • Build on our communities’ assets and unique qualities.

For 2021, the nine grants awarded range from $1,150 to $2,500, totaling $16,500. Changemakers at Work Grants are made possible by the Fund for Reno County and our Donor Advised Fund holders who choose to partner with us on these exciting projects through our Giving Together program.

Grant recipient organizations for 2021:


Award: $14,950

Funds will allow an already stable child care center in the community to add 48 spots, increasing the center’s capacity to serve preschool and toddler-aged children and allowing the center to serve school-aged children during school breaks.


Award: $4,750

Funds will help with costs of a facilitated strategic planning session for the city’s Human Relations Commission as it works with the new full-time Human Relations Officer to re-establish priorities and set long-term strategic goals and plans.


Award: $2,500

Community Playground Picnic Table: Funds will help provide a shelter for picnic tables at the town’s community center.


Award: $2,086

Girls on the Run uses running and other physical activities as a platform for teaching life skills and promoting positive social, emotional and holistic outcomes for girls in grades three through eight. Grant funding will support registration fees, making the experience more affordable for 20 girls in Reno County.


Award: $1,500

Growing Graber: This project will strengthen the school’s existing outdoor classroom, providing a continued space for staff, students and families to come together to learn about nature, community pride and the power of collaboration. Funds will be used for gardening supplies, a tower garden, pond chemicals and maintenance, and food for wildlife.


Award: $1,150

Podcast Network: Heartland Arts & Culture Collective, in partnership with Salt City Sound, will increase community pride and engagement by creating a podcast network for arts and cultural content. The inaugural project will share news important to Hutchinson residents, include interviews with local guests and highlight upcoming community events.


Award: $2,117

Grant funds will be used to construct a sidewalk between Hospice House and the Hospice House gardens, creating an ADA-compliant pathway, facilitating patients’ and families’ safe access to this outdoor asset, which brings comfort to many.


Award: $1,500

Chester I. Lewis Plaza Art: Funds will help with the costs of providing plaques under pieces of artwork at Chester I. Lewis Plaza. They would explain the scenes depicted and the history of Lewis’ contributions to the civil rights movement so that all who visit the plaza are able to celebrate his work for the community and the entire country.


Award: $2,000

Virtual Kids Art Camp: In response to the pandemic, the art center’s virtual art camp is intended to fill the current gap in children’s art education and ease teachers’ burdens as online educators. Free art supplies will be available to children who wish to participate but for whom costs would be prohibitive.


Award: $2,000

Making Space of the Arts in Carey Park: In partnership with the city and with the support of Reno/Hutchinson Arts and Humanities Council and the Hutchinson Community College Music Department, the municipal band will create a simplistic, flexible performing space in Carey Park between the zoo and the Homebuilder’s Shelter for municipal band concerts and experimentation of other public outdoor performance gatherings in Carey Park.


Award: $2,757

Grant funds will support the replacement of the USD 308 Child Care Center’s dishwasher, washer and dryer, which are all used much more frequently since the onset of COVID to protect the health of the children attending the center and its staff members.


Award: $2,650

Grant funds will help support Hutchinson Symphony’s Hometown Tour, an eclectic and dynamic musical experience featuring different musical genres and styles, guest artists, and performances in a variety of Hutchinson locations.


Award: $1,850

People of Reno County Video Series: This project will celebrate Hutchinson and Reno County’s 150th anniversaries by honoring our community and its citizens through engaging videos that put a new spin on collecting and sharing oral histories. Funds will help with the purchase of equipment needed for quality filming and sound recording.


Award: $2,500

Outdoor Pickleball Court Enhancement: Funds will allow for effective lights on the outdoor courts being renovated at Rice Park so community members can gather even after dark to play pickleball, a sport growing in popularity in Reno County and across the country.


Award: $1,500

Paint the Town Beautiful: SculptureArtWalk will continue its focus on enhancing community pride by working closely with the public on a new, collaborative mural in the downtown Hutchinson area.


Award: $15,000

Funds will support the construction of an additional outdoor play area at USD 310 Fairfield’s child care center, which serves families from six rural Reno County communities. The new equipment will be appropriate for children 6 months to 2 years old whose size and developmental needs prohibit them from safely using the existing equipment. Reno County families will have access to the playground even when school is not in session.

Youth Philanthropy Council Grants

Armed with $3,000 each year, high school students from across the county discuss local issues of concern to youth, learn about grantmaking, and award grants to youth-serving organizations. The Dillon family established Youth Philanthropy Council Endowment to provide money for the grants and program administration, in honor of Dick Dillon’s extensive philanthropic work in our community.

Grant recipient organizations for 2021:


Stronger Together Power Hour

Award: $435

Boys & Girls Clubs’ Keystone Club members were inspired to expand Power Hour – a tutoring/mentoring effort – to help their peers at the club by providing an environment conducive for completing online assignments during the school district’s hybrid learning period of the pandemic. Funds will be used to continue that work and acknowledge and reward students who participated in the program by holding a Hero’s Dinner, which will include coaches and teachers who have helped inspire the students during this challenging time.


“Enchanted Forest”

Award: $250

FCT will purchase resource books of theater games and activities for kids, which student directors will use throughout this year’s “Enchanted Forest,” a partnership production with Dillon Nature Center that will be open to the public. The resource books will be used during youth productions for years to come.


Badger Indoor Exhibit

Award: $565

Hutchinson Zoo staff will recruit interested youth to help with design and construction phases of an update to the badger exhibit. Students will learn about zoo exhibit design, budget considerations and exhibit construction while building positive relationships with zoo staff.


Healthy Communities

Award: $750

Funds will help purchase a greenhouse for an extended growing season for the NAACP Youth’s urban, aquaponic garden. Produce grown in the garden will benefit local families.


Natural Log Seating

Award: $425

The school will use the grant funding to purchase natural log seating for an outdoor learning area being created in phases on the school’s grounds. Students and teachers are excited to have access to fresh air and opportunities for an occasional change of learning environment.


Equipment for The Closet

Award: $320

Funds will help purchase shelving and bars to better organize clothing and toiletries available to Hutchinson High School students in the Salthawk Community Supports initiative, The Closet. Better organization will also allow for more room for students who consider The Closet a “safe and friendly space” to gather during lunch.


No Sew Tie Blankets

Award: $255

Trinity Catholic High School’s Key Club will purchase fleece material and student members will hand-tie blankets that will be donated to Open Door Pregnancy Care Center this year.


Learn More

Let’s talk about your ideas for making Reno County even greater.

Kari Mailloux, Director of Strategic Initiatives