The Multnomah Bar Foundation
awards grants to 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations whose programs are aligned with the goals of the Civic Education Fund (formerly the MBA 100th Anniversary Community Gift Fund) to advance civic education and engagement and increase public understanding of the justice system. Made possible by the generous support of the legal community, the MBF has given over $275,000 to local nonprofits.
MBF Awards $37,750 in Civic Education Grants
Foundation received $3,500 to expand the PolitiCorps program to a year-long leadership
Elders in Action was awarded $3,750 for Action, Passion, Talent = Civic Engagement, to teach older
adults how to be engaged in their communities and work with their local city
and county elected officials.
League of Women
Voters of Oregon was granted $3,500 to increase participation statewide in the Oregon Student Mock Elections program in anticipation of the 2016 presidential election, and to expand their Voter Services outreach.
League of Women
Voters of Portland received $3,500 for their 2015-16 Outreach Campaign of civic education panel discussions focusing
on current issues and the rights of citizens to influence government decisions.
MBA YLS Service to
the Public Committee was awarded $2,000 for the YOUthFILM Project, a film contest for grades K-12 that uses the
theme determined annually by the ABA as the theme for short film submissions.
Services was awarded $10,000 to support the educative function and expand the volunteer pool of Four
Cities Peer Court, a restorative justice program that holds low-level,
first-time juvenile offenders accountable without the involvement of the
juvenile justice system. Students serve as peer lawyers and jury; volunteer
judges and lawyers serve as judges.
Inc., a new recipient, was granted $4,000 for their TOOLS Program (Tradeswomen Organized for Outreach, Leadership &
Support), which focuses on civic education and engagement for women in the trades.
Sponsors Organized to
Assist Refugees received $7,500 for the Voter Education Program, educating refugees and immigrants, particularly
low income and disabled refugees and asylees, about what it means to vote, how
to read a voter pamphlet and where to vote.
MBF Awards $40,000 in Civic Education Grants
Meet Our 2014 Recipients
Bus Project Foundation was awarded $7,000 to expand PolitiCorps, their summer leadership development training model, to include year-round civic engagement, professional development and organizing trainings for young leaders, and to create a pilot legislative program, focusing on the 2015 legislative session.
City Club of Portland was granted $2,500 for its Civic Awards program to recognize excellence in individuals, student groups and nonprofits whose work promotes civic and political knowledge and skills, teaches civic values, presents an innovative approach to civic engagement and addresses the opportunity gap at the high school level.
Classroom Law Project received $9,000 to recruit, train and support new elementary, middle and high school teachers for the Mock Trial and We the People: The Citizen & the Constitution programs and provide grants for teacher resources. Activities emphasize critical thinking, civil discourse about current issues and connections to constitutional principles.
League of Women Voters of Oregon was granted $3,500 to expand Oregon Student Mock Elections. Student ballots mirror current Oregon issues and candidates. This is a full civics curriculum that is adaptable for student ability and class time with the objective of preparing Oregon students to be critically thinking, fully engaged voting citizens.
League of Women Voters of Portland was granted $4,000 to hold candidate and ballot measure forums prior to the primary and general elections. These forums are often the only opportunities for voters to hear all candidates speak at the same event. Forums are open to the public, available online and broadcast on local cable access.
MBA Young Lawyers Section received $2,000 for the YOUthFILM Project, an ABA Law Day-themed student filmmaking contest that teaches K-12 students about civic involvement and the law and offers volunteer attorney mentors to assist filmmakers in creating their short films. Winning films are screened for the public during MBA Community Law Week and prizes are traditionally awarded by the Chief Justice of the Oregon Supreme Court.
MetroEast Community Media was awarded $4,000 to create a Spanish language short video and public service announcement, promoting civic engagement and volunteering and to encourage the growing Spanish-speaking community, one of the largest but most civically under-represented groups in the Portland metro area, to become actively involved in our democracy. The segments will be on public access, online and on demand, and distributed to targeted agencies locally, regionally and nationally.
Native American Youth and Family Center was granted $2,500 for Native Vote, a program to register, educate and engage voters to increase civic participation within the Native American community. Through culturally-specific outreach and engagement, the program will also create leaders in civic engagement and elevate the profile of Native American voters, a group that is currently underrepresented in the civic community.
Red Lodge Legal Services Program received $500 to fund the civic engagement session in a speaker series pilot project for women incarcerated in Coffee Creek Correctional Facility. The anticipated outcome is to have participants voting upon release, civically engaged with a voice in their communities and involved in decision-making conversations.
Sponsors Organized to Assist Refugees was granted $5,000 for its Voter Education Project,to promote full immigrant integration, civic participation and voter engagement through monthly classes to newly naturalized citizens. Participants learn about the voting system and receive help registering to vote. MBF funding will also be used to expand and update the curriculum.