Nonprofits have until Sept. 30 to apply for grants to serve Latino community

PROVIDENCE, RI – Nonprofit organizations have until Sept. 30 to apply for grants that serve the Latino community through the Juanita Sánchez Community Fund at the Rhode Island Foundation. Grants are expect to range from $500 to $1,500.

The fund was created in 1992 through contributions from Sánchez’s friends and family members who wished to honor her achievements as a community leader, organizer and long-time believer in fighting for the unmet needs and rights of Latinos. The fund has awarded nearly $110,000 in grants to date.

Past recipients include Beat the Streets Providence, which received $1,450 to launch a co-educational wrestling program at Calcutt Middle School and Segue Institute for Learning in Central Falls; the Community Preparatory School, which received $1,000 to fund scholarships for Latinas; and Fuerza Laboral of Central Falls, which received $1,200 to develop an educational program on workplace sexual harassment designed for Latina women.

Other recent recipients are Mothers Against Drunk Driving, which received $500 for victim services, public awareness, youth and adult educational opportunities and on-going support to the Latino community; and Smart Test, which received $800 for its Strengthening Families Through Music and Language program.

The fund is guided by an advisory committee comprised of Marta Martinez, Michelle Cortes-Harkins, Tia Ristaino-Siegel and Tony Sánchez.

“More than 20 years after her death, Juanita Sánchez still evokes powerful memories, smiles, tears, advocacy and the act of giving to Latino issues in Rhode Island. Today, the Sánchez Fund memorializes Juanita’s life by making small grants to organizations seeking to serve the unmet needs and advance the rights of Latinos,” said Martinez.

The Rhode Island Foundation is the largest and most comprehensive funder of nonprofit organizations in Rhode Island. In 2015, the Foundation awarded $41.5 million in grants to organizations addressing the state’s most pressing issues and needs of diverse communities. Through leadership, fundraising and grantmaking activities, often in partnership with individuals and organizations, the Foundation is helping Rhode Island reach its true potential. For more information about the Juanita Sanchez Community Fund, visit