Wellbeing Microgrants are a new approach to engage and support Santa Monica residents looking to make a positive change in their community. Designed to empower residents, the City provides up to $500 for ideas that are focused on small scale action to improve community wellbeing. This initiative is a key component of the first phase of the Pico Wellbeing Project.
City government alone cannot address community wellbeing. We need to create ways for everyone, from individual residents to nonprofits and private businesses, to do what they can to move the needle on wellbeing, so that our City reflects the best of all of us. This is why we are taking a new approach to engage and support Santa Monica residents through Wellbeing Microgrants. Using funds provided by the Culture of Health Prize from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the City awards up to $500 to support individuals who want to implement ideas that focus on small scale action to improve community wellbeing.
What will you do next year to make a difference? And how might a Wellbeing Microgrant bring YOUR idea to life?
The City's Wellbeing Index revealed that many of residents are facing challenges across the dimensions of wellbeing: Health, Economic Opportunity, Community, Place & Planet, and Learning. In 2020, the Office of Civic Wellbeing will award microgrants that span these dimensions… and applications are now open!
Grantees commit to: Track City-designated metrics; Submit a post-project report, due within two weeks of project completion (to include: photos, video, data); and, Track and deliver a detailed budget of all Microgrant expenditures.
Please use the following findings as inspiration for YOUR microgrant project idea.
42% of residents say they feel isolated from others some of the time, and 11% feel isolated often.
What would you do to decrease isolation and loneliness?
Many Santa Monica residents are facing economic challenges: more than 1 in 4 residents face worries about paying their rent or mortgage. 2 in 3 don't think there is enough opportunity here for their children to be able to afford to live here when they are adults.
While these issues require big solutions, microgrants focused on Economic Opportunity can help in small ways that have a big impact – paying skills training to increase employment options, or kickstart a new business.
What type of economic impact could you have with a microgrant - for yourself and for the community?
Santa Monicans eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day at a rate 30% lower than the U.S average (only 21%). Over a third say they’re stressed all or most of the time.
What would you do to increase health in your community?
About a quarter of Santa Monicans do not feel they have benefitted from Santa Monica’s environmental progress. 41% feel that they have.
How would you bring the benefits of environmental progress to your neighbors?
A majority of Santa Monicans, 63%, feel they have the arts and cultural opportunities they want. However, this number is down slightly from two years ago.
What are your ideas for providing learning opportunities in your community?
All applications are due by January 15. Applications may be submitted online through your CityGrows portal or sent to the Office of Civic Wellbeing, at City Hall Fourth Floor, 1685 Main Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401.
Applications will be reviewed to determine whether they meet the Guidelines. Applications that meet all Guidelines will proceed to the second phase of review.
Applications will be reviewed on the basis of the Evaluation Criteria (see below). The ratings of all reviewers will be aggregated. Favorably reviewed applications will be considered for funding.
Once final evaluation is completed, consideration will be given to reviewer feedback, available funds, and the intent to fund a diverse mix of ideas and projects.