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Mountain-area women award $235,000 in grants

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ASHEVILLE, N.C. – By working together and pooling their resources, a group of 259 women in Western North Carolina was able to funnel $235,000 to mountain-area nonprofits serving women and girls.

The Women for Women giving circle, a program of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, awarded four grants during its sixth annual grant cycle.

“Women for Women is meeting real needs in our communities,” Elizabeth Brazas, president of the foundation, said in a statement. “Especially during this period of recovery, we are proud that Women for Women is making these big grants that will have a profound impact on women’s lives.”

The 2010 grants were presented during the circle’s annual Power of the Purse event, where veteran news anchor and author Cokie Roberts gave the keynote address.

Each member of the Women for Women giving circle, which was created in 2005, agrees to donate $1,100 a year for three years, with $1,000 of that going into a grantmaking pool and $100 covering the foundation’s administrative costs.

Since its inception, Women for Women has awarded a total of $1.2 million in grants.

This year, On Track Financial Education and Counseling received a $100,000 grant, to be distributed over two years, to help women in 18 counties in Western North Carolina become financially literate.

A two-year, $100,000 grant was awarded to the Task Force on Family Violence, which will use the funds to expand a program that provides assessment, counseling, training and job-placement services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.

The YWCA in Buncombe County will use $20,000 to create an advocacy program and strategy to train women for jobs in the green economy.

And the Children and Family Resource Center of Henderson County received $15,000 to advocate for more subsidized childcare spaces and for more affordable child care.

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