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Neighborhood Matching Fund Invests $750,000 in 23 Community-initiated Projects

Larry and Cathie Wilmore with Dr. Ed Taylor and Dr. Ben Danielson at the Fathers and Sons Together (FAST) Empowerment Basketball Camp in 2019

The City of Seattle has awarded $756,626 to support 23 community-initiated projects through Seattle Department of Neighborhoods’ Neighborhood Matching Fund (NMF). Twenty-three community groups received awards ranging from $9,418 to $50,000 and have pledged $721,956 to match their award through local cash donations, volunteer hours, donated materials, and in-kind professional services.

“For decades, our Neighborhood Matching Fund has showcased Seattle’s deep commitment to our communities, while showcasing exactly what makes our City the best City to live in,” said Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan. “The 23 organizations receiving funding today are bringing forward their visions of a healthier, safer, more vibrant Seattle that benefits not just their neighborhoods but the entire City. From parks and playgrounds to culturally appropriate exhibits to providing job skills, Neighborhood Matching Fund projects are on the leading edge of inclusivity, connecting our City in meaningful ways.”

“The funds we received from the Neighborhood Matching Fund will help us continue our mission to support our amazing youth, families, and community. Strong communities are everything. We can’t change the world, but we can help strengthen our community to be a more vibrant, safe, and enjoyable place where fathers, sons, mothers, and daughters live, create memories, and thrive.”

– Larry Wilmore, Fathers and Sons Together

The Neighborhood Matching Fund offers grants to organizations committed to fostering and building our community. It has two funds: the Community Partnership Fund, which is generally offered three times a year with awards up to $50,000; and Small Sparks Fund, which is offered on a rolling basis throughout most of the year with awards of up to $5,000.

Over its nearly 32-year history, more than 5,000 projects have been funded in partnership with the NMF Program, and its investment in neighborhoods can be seen across the city. For information about NMF, visit

“We are so grateful to the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods for our recent award from the Neighborhood Matching Fund. With these funds, we plan to improve our Community Center by replacing the existing HVAC system. This award will help ensure that our Community Center can continue to be a vital hub for cultural and community events, civic engagement activities, and our vital Senior Virtual Village program.”

– Isaac Araya, Board President of the Eritrean Association in Greater Seattle

The following community organizations will receive Neighborhood Matching Fund awards during the Fall 2020 funding cycle:

2020 Community Partnership Fund Awards – Fall Cycle


$30,000 for Northwest Arts Streaming Hub for NASH at Nite, a youth-curated, all-ages variety show that prioritizes local BIPOC artists. The goal of the project is to provide career-connected learning opportunities to youth who are interested in content creation, live streaming, and digital producing, along with free quality virtual entertainment during this pandemic crisis. (Community match: $33,550)

$24,754 to RV Steering Committee for Masks Up: Masks Down, a series of 12 virtual workshops on subsequent Saturdays for youth ages 11-17. The project will encourage participants to share stories about their life experiences since COVID-19 using art, literature photography and spoken word. (Community match: $14,800)

$33,360 to Emergency Communication Hubs-Seattle for Emergency Hubs: Increasing Our Outreach. The project will develop five additional emergency hubs, translate current Hub brochure and videos into multiple languages, and provide interpretation at 2021 outreach events. (Community match: $20,976)

District 1

$49,500 to Highland Park Elementary PTA for Phase 2 of the Highland Park School Playground Project. This will support updating their 2016 Playground Master Plan to reflect current community needs and develop construction documents. (Community match: $31,000)

$25,840 to Highland Park Improvement Club for Community Gathering & Performance Space Renovation to provide HVAC work, ceiling repair, and new lighting and proscenium in the interior gathering/performance space, a popular venue for community meetings, arts and cultural events. (Community match: $28,380)

$40,650 to Seattle Nantes Sister City Association for Nantes Park Beautification to transform the pocket park into something more kid-friendly, more accessible, and more reflective of our sister city relationship with Nantes, France. The project will take designs through a community review and produce final construction-ready plans. (Community match: $21,300)

District 2

$50,000 to Eritrean Association of Greater Seattle for Eritrean Association HVAC Replacement at the Association’s Community Center, a vital hub for cultural activities and other community gatherings for Seattle’s Eritrean community. Replacing the existing HVAC system will improve the large hall for future gatherings. (Community match: $80,019)

$49,778 to Friends of Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands for Rainier Beach Urban Farm Greenhouses Renovation to increase capacity for food production at the farm. The work will include installation of thermostatically controlled sidewalls and solar array panels, soil remediation, construction of new raised beds, and permitting. (Community match: $70,120)

$50,000 to Friends of Detective Cookie Chess Park for Phase 4 of Detective Cookie Chess Park to focus on initial construction of the park, including demolition, grading and drainage, and utility installation. The project envisions an inter-generational, multicultural community space where neighbors can gather and play chess while honoring Detective Denise “Cookie” Bouldin. (Community match: $35,560)

$49,745 to Mini Mart City Park for Phase 3 of Mini Mart City Park Construction to fund exterior finishes, including carpentry, siding, railings, paint, and stain. The goal of the park is to provide a place for arts, education, environmental action, and community collaboration in the Duwamish Valley. (Community match: $70,100)

$35,000 to Brothers United in Leadership Development for Build 2021, a series of community-building events to create leadership opportunities for Black men to positively impact, heal, unite, inspire, celebrate, engage, and build their community. (Community match: $48,040)

$25,000 to Somali Community Services of Seattle for Virtual Variety Video Extravaganza to create two virtual variety shows planned and developed by the community with the goal of fostering development of relationships across cultural communities. (Community match: $26,100)

$50,000 to Georgetown Open Space Steering Committee for 8th Avenue Street End to build portions of the developed street and park design which was developed with input from the community. Work will involve design, engineering, and close coordination between lead agencies and partners. (Community match: $40,286)

$30,000 to FAST Fathers and Sons Together for Next Generation Level Up Job Readiness Project to provide twenty-five South Seattle residents of color between the ages of 15-24 with job-ready skills like resume writing, interviewing skills, and on-the-job performance expectations. The program will partner with leaders and industry professionals of color to facilitate and train participants. (Community match: $21,400)

$18,315 to Chinatown-International District Exhibit Committee for Asian Pacific Islander Americans: COVID-19 Exhibit, a free digital exhibit of art, personal stories, and artifacts. The exhibit will partner with Wing Luke Museum to educate the public about the effects of COVID-19 on Asian Pacific Islander Americans in the Chinatown-International District and Seattle. (Community match: $9,200)

District 3

$33,000 to Somali Youth Soccer Association for East African Homework Help and Soccer Program to develop a free after-school program. The program will virtually assist youth with homework and improve physical fitness through soccer drills on the weekends. (Community match: $33,570)

District 4

$13,552 to Friends of Picardo Farms P-Patch for Accessibility Improvements at the Picardo P-Patch to rebuild and enlarge existing accessible garden beds, add specialized garden tools and storage, and enhance critical pathways to increase accessibility. (Community match: 11,542)

$43,000 to Eli’s Park Project for Phase 3 of Burke-Gilman Park Renovation to design and fabricate custom bike stations, sculptural elements, and educational panels. The park renovation will create an accessible, inclusive, nature-based park for people of all ages and abilities. (Community match: $27,500)

$20,819 to Magnuson Children’s Garden Steering Committee for Magnuson Children’s Garden All Are Welcome Mural to work with youth residents of Magnuson Park housing and surrounding neighbors to design and create murals that create a strong ‘All are Welcome in the Garden’ message. (Community match: $19,800)

$30,095 to The U District Partnership for U District Mural Program to install three new works of public art in different areas of the neighborhood. (Community match: $15,510)

District 5

$12,831 to Greenwood-Phinney Greenways for NE Greenwood Homezone to calm traffic on five neighborhood streets. The project includes planning, designing, and installing custom-made barrel planters. (Community match: $16,590)

$9,418 to Victory Heights Community Council for Victory Heights Neighborhood Signal Box Artwork to feature the work of eight local artists’ work on utility boxes in the area. The project is focused on growing the beauty and identity of the Victory Heights neighborhood. (Community match: $8,773)

District 7

$31,969 to UpGarden P-Patch for UpGarden Renovation Project of Mercer St. Garage to beautify and enhance the community garden space. Renovations will include restoring garden beds, redesigning the entrance, refreshing signage and adding new features such as benches, gazebo, and bike rack. (Community match: $37,840)



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