The Ojai Women’s Fund is pleased to announce in our first year, $60,000 in grants have been equally awarded to six organizations serving the Ojai Valley community. Made possible because of the collective effort of our OWF members. These grants are awarded across five program areas: Arts, Education, Environment, Health, and Social Services.
Ojai Youth Opera, established in 2012, is the first stand-alone youth opera company in the United States. It is dedicated to keeping the torch of opera burning bright for present and future generations. The grant is being used to help students in the Ojai Valley learn the history of the opera Brundibár — a children’s opera originally performed in the WWII Theresienstadt concentration camp. The curriculum meets the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum guidelines for teaching about the Holocaust and helps students develop empathy and an acceptance of diversity while emphasizing a strong, anti-bullying message.
The Girls Empowerment Workshop educates, empowers, and inspires girls in the Ojai Unified School District by raising awareness, developing communication skills, and cultivating self-respect. The grant enables the agency to expand programming to include younger children and boys throughout the Ojai Valley and to address the dramatic rise in rates of students’ self-reported depression and self-injury.
Once Upon a Watershed seeks to awaken appreciation, discovery, and connection with the natural world. The grant supports the delivery of two new units of Our School the Watershed, a hands-on education program that cultivates a sense of shared responsibility for our whole earth system. Sixth-grade and kindergarten students in the Ojai Valley will investigate, assess, and design rainwater capture, redirection containment, and disbursement systems for their schools.
Livingston Memorial Visiting Nurse Association ensures that vulnerable, low-income residents of the Ojai Valley receive quality home care, compassionate hospice care, and vital personal care, regardless of their financial situation. The grant allows the Association to serve an additional 35 low-income Ojai patients and their families through the expertise of social workers and home health care aids.
The Nan Tolbert Nurturing Center is dedicated to nurturing children from birth to five through pre and postnatal well-being, infant and toddler development, and parent education and support. The grant is being used to expand the Teen and Young Parent Group clinical supervision team and provide classes, workshops, and peer support to this high-risk population.
Reins of H.O.P.E. (Human Opportunity Partnership with Equine)
Reins of H.O.P.E. helps clients build self-confidence and develop interpersonal and problem-solving skills through the use of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP). This is an alternative form of therapy in which clients deal directly with horses as they work to process and solve their personal challenges. The grant money is being used to provide EAP therapy for students from Ojai Chaparral Alternative High School.
"There’s something about this organization and its underlying values of equity and fairness that really speak to me. I see it in memberships, in the way also that we do the grants – we really want to make sure that everyone has a chance in an equal manner to participate."
"We are inspired by the work of the Ojai Valley nonprofits and delighted that our family can help OWF support their efforts with grants."
"This group shows you can have many people doing a little, which adds up to a LOT! By funding these programs, we are giving back in huge ways. I am so proud of this group!"