$62,000 in Grants Announced for Northern Kentucky Nonprofits


community impact fund at horizon community funds sends money to six organizations


Horizon Community Funds has deployed $62,000 across six nonprofits for their work in Northern Kentucky through its Community Impact Fund.

The following nonprofits received funds:

  • Adopt A Class received $6,000 to expand their program, which connects businesses and civic groups with students in economically challenged schools, into Ockerman Elementary in Florence. The expansion will add mentors to 500 students.

  • The Catalytic Fund received $10,000 to support its Impact Investment Program, which attracts quality place-based real estate investments to Northern Kentucky’s river cities that result in both regional economic development (job and talent attraction) and local community development (improving quality of life and place for low- and moderate-income residents).

  • Covington Partners received $10,000 to support its Individual Strength Plan, which is a goal-setting activity completed after students identify their unique character strength profile and includes an academic goal, a resiliency goal (how to address a life challenge) and an altruism goal (how to serve others).

  • Gateway Community and Technical College received $7,500 to support the River City Promise Scholarship Program, a three-pronged approach to supporting Pell-eligible students who are graduates of the river city high schools. These students will 1) receive a scholarship to cover tuition, 2) receive assistance from a dedicated service center, and 3) benefit from a reduced tuition rate at Northern Kentucky University upon completion of the associate’s degree at Gateway.

  • Northern Kentucky Education Council received $13,500 to support its One to One Reading Program, which equips students in first through third grade and their families with tools to build literacy.

  • Refugee Connect received $15,000 to support its Northern Kentucky Community Navigator Program, which provides native language support to guide families in accessing resources and services in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. The program is staffed by trained refugee and immigrant community leaders who are representative of the populations served by the organization.


“I can’t emphasize this enough- Northern Kentuckians are in great hands with the nonprofits that serve our community,” said Horizon Community Funds President Nancy Grayson. “We know these grants will make the highest and best use of donor dollars in Northern Kentucky, and will impact areas of education, workforce, and economic development at a time when impact is critically needed, and for years to come. The Community Impact Fund is our most flexible fund to support Northern Kentucky needs as they arise, and I encourage the community, our giving community, to make your donation of any size today.”


Each funded project is also closely focused on lifting all Northern Kentuckians, reaching historically under-resourced communities in the area.


The Community Impact Fund, which operates separately from the Horizon NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund, provides an annual flexible grant opportunity that provides resources for nonprofits that accelerate change, innovate solutions, and leverage partnerships and resources in Northern Kentucky. The Community Impact Fund relies on individual donors, business partnerships, and other support to bring grant opportunities to Northern Kentucky.


“We will impact Northern Kentucky lives not with our opinions on the quality of education, job training or business development, but with our actions,” said Horizon Community Funds Grantmaking Committee Chair Kit Andrews. “Please join us! The Horizon Community Funds team knows the pulse of the non-profit community and offers help where it’s most needed, but only through the generosity of kind people like you!”


Information on the 2022 Community Impact Fund grant cycle will be available at the end of this year.


The community is encouraged to donate to the Community Impact Fund by:

  • Visiting www.horizonfunds.org

  • Mailing a check made payable to Horizon Community Funds (memo: NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund): 50 E. RiverCenter Blvd., Suite 431, Covington, KY 41011

Additional supporting quotes:

Adopt A Class COO Marie Rusincovitch: “Adopt A Class is honored to receive $6,000 from Horizon Community Funds to support Adopt A Class’ growth and expansion into Northern Kentucky. Thanks to the Community Impact Fund, more than 500 students at Ockerman Elementary in Florence will be mentored by local businesses and civic groups through our program. As a volunteer-powered organization, this investment supports the necessary and important work we do. Thank you to Horizon Community Funds for helping us to better serve our student population as we expose students to a breadth of careers and life experiences. With your help, we are able to spark passion & explore potential in students across Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.”


The Catalytic Fund President/CEO Jean Schroer: “The Catalytic Fund is very honored to be a recipient of a Horizon Community Funds Community Impact Fund grant. It will amplify our work significantly. Specifically, the $10,000 can be used to provide matching funds for an additional $20,000 in grant dollars from the US Department of Treasury CDFI Fund and $30,000 of investment capital typically leverages $600,000 in tangible investment which in turn creates jobs, quality housing, and new economic activity in our NKY River Cities. We very much appreciate the Horizon Community Funds’ support for our work in creating housing diversity, preserving historic assets, and converting vacant sites and buildings to productive assets that benefit community members.”


Covington Partners Executive Director Stacie Strotman: “Covington Partners is thrilled to receive funding from the Horizon Community Impact Fund to implement Individual Strength Plans (ISP). The ISP will help students build a plan for individual growth and success based on their top five character strengths after taking the Values in Action character assessment. I can’t wait to watch our students learn that they have strengths and that they can use those strengths to be successful in school and in life. The ISP has the ability to change a negative mindset into a positive and hopeful future. The ISP will quite literally change lives.”


Gateway Community & Technical College President/CEO Dr. Fernando Figueroa: “We are grateful to Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky for their very generous support of our River City Promise Scholarship. Since its launch in the Fall of 2020, 98 students have begun their journey to a better life through our River City Promise partnership with Northern Kentucky University. This donation signifies the importance of this program in our community.”


Northern Kentucky Education Council (NKEC) Executive Director Dr. Randy Poe: “Ensuring that every child is reading on grade level by the end of 3rd grade is a top priority for the Northern Kentucky Education Council and our community, and our One to One programs are a key to achieving this goal. The One to One Coaching and Parents as Partners programs will provide a multi-generational approach to helping students overcome their literacy challenges, especially following the COVID-19 pandemic. We are currently recruiting One to One Reading Coaches to help struggling 1st-3rd grade readers in 14 local school. We hope our communities will answer the call and help change the outcome for hundreds of children in NKY!”


Northern Kentucky Education Council One to One Director Polly Lusk Page: “Literacy is the great equalizer, especially for children of color and those living with poverty. We are beyond grateful for the investment from Horizon Community Funds and their confidence in our One to One Reading programs. This grant from the Community Impact Fund enables us to provide more children with a One to One Coach and enroll more parents/guardians in the Parents as Partners Program. Join us in working with our partner schools as they address the unfinished learning that many children experienced due to the Pandemic.”


RefugeeConnect Executive Director Kristin Burgoyne: “On behalf of the RefugeeConnect Board of Directors, staff, and families: we are grateful for being chosen to receive a Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky grant. These funds will allow us to deepen our work with Northern Kentucky refugee families through our Community Navigator program. Our Community Navigators are integral to fulfilling the mission of our organization by providing intensive individualized family support to Northern Kentucky’s growing refugee and immigrant population. Community Navigators are cultural leaders who help families navigate the complex social systems, connect them to area organizations, resources, and providers, and support the long term goals of families, all in the families native language. Horizon Funds support will enable us to reach more families and develop deeper partnerships with Northern Kentucky schools, organizations, and providers.”