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C.O. nonprofits urged to Pitch for a Purpose


Central Oregon nonprofits in search of funding and professional development training are invited to apply for Leadership Bend’s Impact Summit, which is opening applications for prospective nonprofits on Giving Tuesday.

The hands-on competition has awarded more than $50,000 in unrestricted funds to winning nonprofits in the past four years — including Healing Reins Therapeutic Riding Center, La Pine Community Kitchen, Healthy Beginnings and The Giving Plate.

The Impact Summit, which provides training and visibility for local nonprofits, culminates in an opportunity to present in front of a panel of experts during “Pitch for a Purpose,” Central Oregon’s only nonprofit venture capitalist competition.

Last year, The Giving Plate, a local food bank, received $12,000 and used those funds to purchase professional-quality freezers to reduce energy costs, increase freezer capacity and increase the quality of food they have on hand. The money also helped fund the Backpacks for Bend program, which provides food for 450 students in need every week.

“This funding made a lasting impact on us and affects our organization every day.” said Giving Plate Co-Executive Director Ranae Staley.

Ten organizations selected for the Impact Summit will join a series of workshops geared toward small-to-mid-size nonprofits including strategic and business planning, finance, board governance, marketing and pitch creation. Nonprofits will have access to expert coaches and trainings throughout the workshop series.

From there, five organizations will have the opportunity to present in front of a panel of experts during “Pitch for a Purpose,” set for May 8, 2019 at Central Oregon Community College’s Willie Hall. At that event, one nonprofit will be awarded $10,000 or more in funding.

Central Oregon-based 501(c)(3) organizations with an annual budget that does not exceed $750,000 can apply using this application.

All applications are due no later than 5 p.m. on January 4, 2019. Please email with questions, or for more information.

About Leadership Bend: The Bend Chamber Leadership Bend program is designed to identify, educate, engage and connect willing and committed citizens ready for various community leadership roles. Participants are selected from a broad cross-section of the community, drawing from acknowledged and aspiring leaders who represent diversity and share a commitment to action and positive impact. Participants believe that real change and solutions to the issues in the community can be implemented through strategic philanthropy and acknowledge the significant role small-to-mid-size nonprofit organizations play in contributing to the resiliency of Central Oregon.

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