The Zonta Club of Denver has been fortunate to be the recipient of bequests from several members, two of which were of significant size. These gifts enabled the endowment of a 501(c)(3) organization founded by the club, now known as the Zonta Club of Denver Foundation (ZCDF).
ZCDF supports international service projects of Zonta International and local projects of the club, all of which are focused on the empowerment of women. The club has historically donated a third of ZCDF income, together with proceeds of club fundraising, to the Zonta International Foundation to support women worldwide. The remaining two-thirds are used primarily to support charitable organizations in the Denver metro area that provide services to position local women and girls for self-sufficiency and better lives for them and their family members.
Applying for a Grant
501(c)(3) organizations can apply for grants from ZCDF to fund a new or ongoing project within the Denver metro area that is focused directly on improving the status and quality of life of Denver at-risk women. The Grant Funding Application is here.
In 2022, Zonta Club of Denver Foundation distributed a total of $52,113. Of the total, $34,500 in grants were awarded to the following local community organizations:
The Center for Work Education and Employment (CWEE) — $10,000
CWEE supports vulnerable workers, mostly single moms, to train for and launch careers. CWEE addresses the root causes of poverty by providing a path to long-term employment for hundreds of Denver-area families each year. CWEE is among Denver’s leading comprehensive anti-poverty organizations and over 40 years has pioneered more effective ways to help struggling families. The Zonta grant will purchase forty-five laptop computers for participants in their virtual workforce program. This project will also offer participants assistance with computer skills and help with finding job opportunities. The program reports that 89% of the participants are women and 70% are single mothers.
The Blue Bench (TBB) Safe Bars — $8,500
The Blue Bench is metropolitan Denver’s only comprehensive sexual assault prevention and care center and has received several prior grants. They raise awareness of sexual assault through door-to-door education, they partner with hundreds of schools and organizations to provide scientifically supported sexual assault prevention programs, and they offer comprehensive services to sexual assault survivors. Sexual assault remains a critical problem in our community. Safe Bars is a sexual assault prevention training module provided to staff who work in establishments that serve alcohol and that Zonta Club of Denver has supported in the past with a grant. The Safe Bars training prepares staff to recognize and respond to incidents of sexual harassment and assault that are occurring among patrons of their business. The Blue Bench is one of a few organizations across the country providing this curriculum which is critical to keeping people safe when alcohol is present.
TBB has also joined with our advocacy committee in developing, publishing, and distributing a poster designed to raise awareness that sexual assault may also be a domestic violence issue. The poster offers education and information on how to access resources.
Open Door Ministries (ODM), Te Veo House — $5,000
Open Door Ministries is a nonprofit Christian community development organization created in 1997. Open Door provides practical help and hope to people in urban Denver who are homeless or low income. Zonta’s $5,000 grant will help to support The Te Veo House. “Te Veo” translated from Spanish to English means “I See You.” Te Veo House offers short-term sanctuary to women who are trying to leave homelessness and to supply them with tools they need to take the next step toward self-sufficiency. These tools include safe shelter, provisions for basic needs, job coaching and life skill development classes to help them transition out of “survival mode” to a mindset of independence.
Heart and Hand (H&H) — $10,000
H&H offers a variety of programs in the Five Points neighborhood to support the community, including after-school and summer programming, career and college readiness workshops, and wrap-around supports to the entire family including resource navigation, support services, and advocacy using the Strengthening Families framework. This grant will allow H&H to organize and equip a new building adjacent to their house that will offer after-school programs, art programs, family development meeting space, career and college readiness courses, and community organizing projects.
In addition, $17,371 was given to the Zonta Foundation for Women for the following Zonta International programs:
Amelia Earhart Fellowships – $10,000 (one full scholarship)
These fellowships are awarded annually to 30 women pursuing Ph.D./doctoral degrees in aerospace engineering and space sciences. The fellowship may be used at any university or college offering accredited post-graduate courses and degrees in these fields. Since the program’s inception in 1938, Zonta has awarded 1,603 Amelia Earhart Fellowships, totaling more than $10.3 million, to 1,174 women from 73 countries.
International Service – $7,371
In the more than 90 years since its first international service project was funded, Zonta International has contributed nearly $19.2 million to projects benefiting women in 35 countries. This funding has provided training, education, health, sanitation, agricultural and micro-credit assistance to women, primarily through projects implemented by the agencies of the United Nations and other recognized non-governmental organizations.