Foundation for Vancouver Public Schools awarded $6,000 grant from Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation.

Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation recently awarded the Foundation for Vancouver Public Schools (VPS) a $6,000 grant which will be used to remove poverty-related barriers to learning and increase student and family engagement and resiliency.

Umpqua awarded Community Grants to 132 nonprofits in Oregon, Washington, California, Idaho, and Nevada in the first two of three grant cycles planned for 2023. The Foundation for VPS is the only Clark County, WA based grant recipient.

To qualify under the grants program, organizations need to have “demonstrated a shared commitment in improving economic success for under-resourced individuals, families, and(/or) small businesses.”

Approximately 21,000 students attend 40 schools and programs in Vancouver Public Schools. Over 55 percent are from families with incomes that qualified them for the free or reduced-price meal program last school year (a federal poverty indicator). Over 1,200 VPS students experienced homelessness during the 2022-23 school year.

Working in partnership with the school district and a network of Family-Community Resource Coordinators (FCRCs), the Foundation for VPS helps create vibrant and equitable neighborhoods by directing funds for basic needs like food, housing assistance, medical care, transportation, clothing, school supplies, personal hygiene items, and more. The Foundation also supports engagement programs that enrich the educational experience for all students.

“The local nonprofits receiving grants have shown unwavering passion in supporting communities in need through direct-service programing,” said Randy Choy, Vice President of Philanthropy Programs and Managing Director of the Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation. “We look forward to our partnership and the work we will do together.”

Umpqua’s Community Grants are part of the bank’s corporate giving program that has invested $18 million in communities since the foundation was formed in 2014. The 2023 cycle of grants were issued as part of a $20 million dollar philanthropic commitment following Umpqua’s merger with Columbia Bank in March.