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Mayo awarding $20,000 in grants to local programs focused on racial equality
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Mayo awarding $20,000 in grants to local programs focused on racial equality

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Mayo Clinic Health System

Mayo Clinic Health System Southwest Wisconsin is awarding $20,000 in grants to area nonprofits as part of Mayo Clinic’s EverybodyIN Fund for Change.

The program is designed to assist organizations which work to advance racial equality. Mayo locations in Arizona, Florida, Minnesota and Wisconsin will provide $200,000 total in grants to 36 organizations in the four states. Over 100 nonprofits and programs in Mayo’s service areas applied for grants.

“We were inspired as we read about many wonderful programs serving our communities, as well as plans for new initiatives to advance equity, diversity and inclusion,” says Erin Sexton, director of enterprise community engagement at Mayo Clinic.

In La Crosse County, grants are being awarded to four entities. The YWCA of La Crosse will receive $9,000 to expand access to Racial Justice Workshops for community advocates via scholarships, and Hamilton Elementary School will receive $2,000 in support of Hamilton IN for Change, a program that builds teachers’ capacity to plan culturally relevant instruction and activities.

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The La Crosse Police Department will receive $3,500 to provide Fair and Impartial Policing Training to local law enforcement while also engaging community stakeholders and the public.

The Police Department “recognizes the importance of working collaboratively and cooperatively with the community to enhance strategies and practices that celebrate diversity, foster a sense of community and belonging, increase trust, understanding, connection and respect,” says Chief Shawn Kudron. “We are excited about this opportunity to engage the community by partnering for training in an effort to fight racism and advance equity, diversity and inclusion.”

The fourth organization selected was Couleecap, which will receive $5,500 for its Latinx Outreach, Response, and Recovery Program which assists migrant/immigrant workers disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This grant will serve as an important alternative for people who do not have equal access to programs the rest of us can rely on during an emergency,” says Hetti Brown, executive director of Couleecap. “We are deeply grateful to Mayo Clinic Health System for the chance to advance economic equality in our region and develop bilingual and bicultural programs that better connect community members to services.”

Emily Pyrek can be reached at emily.pyrek@lee.net.

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