Local organizations receive over $9,500 in grants from Great Lakes Energy.

February 26, 2016


Volunteers help with food distribution at Caritas Food Pantry in Custer.

Volunteers help with food distribution at Caritas Food Pantry in Custer.

The Great Lakes Energy People Fund recently awarded $9,363 in grants to three Mason County organizations. Caritas Food Pantry, a ministry of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Custer, received $4,216 for a heating and cooling system; the Scottville Optimist Club received $3,500 for stackable chairs for its hall; Sandcastles Children’s Museum in Ludington received $1,647 for a traveling exhibit and Sable Points Lighthouse Keepers Association of Ludington was awarded $500 for the Night at the Lights summer program at Little Sable Point Lighthouse.

The People Fund, supported by GLE members who allow their bill to be rounded up each month to the next dollar, has awarded more than $2.9 million in grants since 1999. Monthly contributions by GLE members average just 50 cents.  Many charitable and community organizations throughout GLE’s 26-county service area along the western side of Michigan benefit from these grants.

The People Fund Board of Directors awarded 14 grants totaling $43,163 in February to non-profit organizations that support community endeavors in GLE’s service territory:

North Area 

  1. Charlevoix Ministerial Association, Charlevoix:  $2,500 for benevolence needs.
  2. Grass River Natural Area, Bellaire:  $3,000 for a field guide for outdoor student and public education and outreach.
  3. Otsego Conservation District, Gaylord:  $5,000 toward an education center that would include storage and handicapped accessible restrooms.
  4. Northern Michigan Equine Therapy, Boyne City:  $2,000 for arena improvements for the outpatient rehabilitation and therapeutic riding center.
  5. Little Traverse Conservancy, Harbor Springs:  $2,000 for supplies for volunteer-led projects through the EcoStewards program.
  6. Ralph Holewinski VFW Post 1518, Gaylord:  $10,000 for a pavilion for recreational, social and patriotic events.

Central Area

  1. Sandcastles Children’s Museum, Ludington:  $1,647 for a traveling exhibit.
  2. Caritas Food pantry, Custer:  $4,216 for a heating and cooling system.
  3. Reed City Area District Library, Reed City:  $4,000 for shingles.
  4. Scottville Optimist Club, Scottville:  $3,500 for stackable chairs for their hall.

South Area

  1. Christian Reformed Church of New Era: $1,000 for materials to build raised beds in a community garden.
  2. Sylvia’s Place, Allegan: $2,800 for new appliances and HVAC duct cleaning.
  3. Empowerment Network, Fremont: $1,000 for a refrigerator.
  4. Sable Points Lighthouse Keepers Association, Ludington: $500 for the Night at the Lights summer program at Little Sable Point Lighthouse.

Non-profit organizations can request a grant application or learn more online at gtlakes.com. The next grant application deadline is June 1, 2016.


Area Churches

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