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Local non-profit helps approve and issue grants impacting underserved youth

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Phoenix Club of Nashville

With over 1 million Tennesseans at risk of hunger everyday, Second Harvest is working to close that gap, and 30 Phoenix Club of Nashville (PCON) members packed more than 1,960 backpacks for children struggling with food insecurity in Middle Tennessee. Second Harvest partners with a total of 490 agencies to distribute food.

Through a number of initiatives, Phoenix Club of Nashville recently approved and issued $37,800 worth of grants impacting Nashville’s underserved youth.

Phoenix Club of Nashville (PCON) is a registered 501(c)(3) organization made up of male volunteers in Middle Tennessee with a dual mission of benefiting the under-served youth of Middle Tennessee and developing its members into leaders in the community and in business. Both of these goals are furthered by PCON’s Venture Philanthropy grant process.  

Venture Philanthropy challenges members to apply investing and business management concepts to philanthropic pursuits while tackling some of the biggest issues facing the community’s youth. Through the Venture Philanthropy process, members partner with a non-profit, perform due diligence, undergo a formal grant writing process and present to the Phoenix Club of Nashville Board for approval. 

Not only does this process impact how grants are designed, but it aligns the objectives of the donor and the recipient to work toward maximum positive impact on the youth beneficiaries of PCON’s gift and the non-profits’ tireless efforts. 

Another way PCON has been able to support non-profits is through identifying like-minded corporate sponsors to co-invest and maximize giving. 

By identifying non-profits and installing business concepts to the grant writing process, Phoenix Club of Nashville has also been able to serve as a liaison in assisting larger companies with community involvement. It also partners with companies to increase the overall impact.  

Including corporate sponsors, PCON’s recent contributions jumped from $32,800 to $37,800 that will impact over 800 Nashville youth.

Each grant was targeted on the education ecosystem and general wellbeing. Non-profits that benefited from the donations included Boy Scouts of America, East Nashville Hope Exchange, Nashville Coaching Coalition and Second Harvest Food Bank.

The non-profits identified are positively impacting Nashville children, but more importantly, doing so in a measurable manner. For example, East Nashville Hope Exchange (ENHE) targeted their programming to six schools where they identified 76 percent of the third- and fourth-graders are not reading proficiently. Phoenix Club of Nashville and Southen Land Company combined to provide $10,000 to hire two certified teachers as well as buy 2,000 books to be given to the 100 children that enroll in the program this summer.

PCON has also partnered with larger established non-profits, such as Boy Scouts of America – STEM Scouts and Second Harvest Food Bank. Phoenix Club of Nashville not only funded a grant of $10,800 to Second Harvest Food Bank, but also supported with a member volunteer night where 30 Phoenix Club members packed 1,960 backpacks for children struggling with food insecurity.  

Phoenix Club of Nashville has given a total of $1.6 million since its inception in 2001 to over 20 different non-profits that benefit the underserved youth, including RePublic Schools, The Family Center of Tennessee, Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital and W.O. Smith School of Music. The non-profit has gone through big changes over the years, shifting its focus away from events to panel discussions on topics that affect Middle Tennessee’s underserved youth. 

For more details on grants, see the non-profits annual report located on its website. 

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