Press Room - Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation's Communications Department is ready to assist members of the media, as well as grantees interested in publicizing their awards.


Media Contacts

June Greist Communications Director

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Andrea Coy Communications Coordinator, Designer

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Our Most Recent News Releases


Local Organizations Use Grants To Build A More Equitable Community

FORT COLLINS, Colo., July 26, 2022 – Local nonprofits, schools and government units are using new grants to make Fort Collins a more equitable place. Each organization can apply to receive a grant of up to $30,000 from Bohemian Foundation’s Bohemian Fund. The next chance to request a grant is coming up. The application opens Aug. 9 and closes Sept. 8.

This spring, 39 organizations received grants totaling $600,000. Highlights include:

  • Alliance for Suicide Prevention of Larimer County recognized there was a gap in addressing the increasing suicide rates among 18-24-year-old young adults. Their new program explores the specific needs of 18-24-year-olds in Fort Collins not enrolled in post-secondary education. It provides suicide prevention resources, social events and peer support groups.
  • Cultural Enrichment Center of Fort Collins serves Black youth in Fort Collins and provides a space where youth feel belonging. The organization’s programming reflects students’ voices and input. This student-centered model supports culturally relevant learning skills and helps students direct their own education and development.
  • Little Shop of Physics hosts mini hands-on science festivals in lower income communities, in partnership with Housing Catalyst. These events aim to make science accessible to everyone in their home communities by removing barriers of cost, language, timing and transportation for families.

Find out how to make a grant request during a workshop Aug 10, 16, and 18. Register at BohemianFoundation.org/bohemian-fund/workshops-applicant-support. A group of community reviewers and Bohemian Foundation staff selects applicants for awards.

Click here to view the full list of organizations that received grants this spring.

About Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colorado, Bohemian Foundation supports local, national and global efforts to build strong communities.

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Students Award More Than $150,000 to Local Nonprofits in 10th Year of Give Next Youth Grantmaking Program

FORT COLLINS, Colo., June 6, 2022 – Students from 26 middle and high schools in Estes, Poudre and Thompson school districts recently celebrated the end of their school year by awarding $151,725 to Larimer County nonprofits. The award celebrations marked the culmination of a year spent designing and managing their own grantmaking programs through Give Next.

Give Next is a school-based program that uses grantmaking as a tool to shift power to youth, build understanding of complex social issues and connect youth to each other and their community. Through the program, local businesses, foundations and individuals become classroom donors by providing each school with $5,000 to award to Larimer County nonprofits. Students work together to identify community needs, choose a focus area, create a mission statement, research nonprofits, review grant applications and make funding decisions. In addition, they organize their own fundraisers to increase their grantmaking capacity. In celebration of Give Next’s 10th anniversary this year, Alpine Bank sponsored a $10,000 student fundraising match. Students surpassed the challenge, raising a record $11,725—bringing total student fundraising to $21,725.

Dozens of Larimer County nonprofits will benefit from the funds. The Alliance for Suicide Prevention received grants from six classrooms, totaling more than $12,000. In part, the funds will support their Youth Advisory Council. The council is comprised of youth volunteers who review the nonprofit’s peer-focused activities. They provide feedback and guidance to ensure programs are tailored for and well received by youth in the community. This resonated with Give Next students, who recognize the importance of amplifying youth voices to prevent suicides.

“Mental health is a very pressing issue that we face every day with the suicide rates amongst teens growing,” said Cooper McGrew, Give Next participant from Boltz Middle School. “Even though there are support groups out there, kids still struggle reaching out and feeling heard. We need to create a society in which [youth] voices are raised up and truly listened to before it is too late.” Boltz Middle School donated $3,600 of their grant money to the Alliance for Suicide Prevention.

Since 2012, students have awarded over three quarters of a million dollars to more than 100 nonprofits in the community through Give Next. More than $100,000 of that has come directly from student-led fundraising efforts.

For more information about Give Next, visit givenextnoco.org.

Click here to view the full list of 2021-2022 Give Next grant recipients.

About Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation provides management support for Give Next. Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colorado, Bohemian Foundation supports local, national and global efforts to build strong communities.

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Pianos About Town Announces 2022 Artists
12 of 13 artists are new to the program this season

FORT COLLINS, Colo., May 9, 2022 – Pianos About Town, a program that brings local art and spontaneous music to the streets of Fort Collins, today announced the artists selected to paint pianos in 2022. Twelve of 13 artists are new to the program this season.

Local artists selected to paint pianos in 2022 are Becca Black, Hannah Call, CM Canino, Ciera Dykstra, Monika Lea Jones, Athena Koss, Cheng Li, Holly McQuinn, Kris Barz Mendonça, Rachael Pitchford, Makari Roehrkasse, Snail Candy Arts, and Aerica Raven Van Dorn.

“We’re excited to welcome our returning and many new artists to this program,” said Ellen Martin, Visual Arts Administrator for the City of Fort Collins. “We received a record number of applications this year and are pleased with the diversity of styles and artist experience selected as part of the City of Fort Collins’ RFP process.”

Outdoor summer painting will start May 11 at the Art in Action tent on the south side of Fort Collins’ Old Town Square.

New Artist Profile: Kris Barz Mendonça, “The Universe in a Piano Shell”

Kris Barz Mendonça is a first-time artist with the Pianos About Town program. Mendonça says the pianos were one of the first things he noticed when he moved to Fort Collins from Brazil.

“I feel connected to the initiative of the Pianos About Town project because art in public spaces is one of the ways you can make urban areas more community oriented,” said Mendonça. “At the same time, art can be visually appealing or thought provoking, being able to make people learn about our past or wonder about the future of society.” Mendonça uses a lighthearted colorful style, friendly characters and storytelling to explore a range of topics.

Mendonça will paint “The Universe in a Piano Shell,” a concept that explores the human desire to explore the universe. Mendonça will use a comic-inspired style and narrative to depict Fort Collins and the universe.

Mendonça concept image:

The Universe in a Piano Shell
The Universe in a Piano Shell by Kris Barz Mendonça

New Artist Profile: Cheng Li, “Whimsical Music Machine”

Cheng Li learned to play piano as a young child.

"I remember riding my little sky-blue bike down to my piano teacher’s house for my weekly piano lessons.” said Li. “From then on, music has been the one constant in my life. When I moved overseas from Japan to the U.S. and lost my spoken language, music was the one language that stayed with me. Music was there for me when I felt lost without my voice.”

“This project called out to me because it married two of my passions: music and art,” said Li. “When I was designing this piece, my focus was to create an inviting and fun design to attract people to play the piano. Whether a new player, a seasoned player, or just a passerby, I want to share my love of music and art with them through this project.”

Li also played a painted piano on her first visit to Fort Collins.

“I spotted a painted piano and sat down to play,” said Li. “In that moment, playing on the beautiful piano under the dappled shade of an aged tree, I felt at home in this new place. I hope that through my art, I can help create a similar magical moment for someone else strolling through the town.”

Li will paint “Whimsical Music Machine,” a concept that reimagines the internal mechanisms of a piano. Instead of strings and hammers, this piano is powered by gears and pipes. The whimsical musical machine grows rainbows and plants, and the world is inhabited by colorful creatures who call the piano their home.

Li concept image:

Whimsical Music Machine
Whimsical Music Machine by Cheng Li

About Pianos About Town

Pianos About Town brings local art and spontaneous music to the streets of Fort Collins. Pianos About Town started in 2010 as a collaboration among Bohemian Foundation, the City of Fort Collins Art in Public Places program and the Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority. Community members watch as local artists transform donated pianos into public art. In 2018, the program celebrated its 100th painted piano.

Scattered among 20 locations across town in the summer, and six locations in the winter, the completed pianos offer surprise interruptions of color and music across Fort Collins. The whimsical pianos beckon to passersby and invite them to make and listen to music together.

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Local Organizations Can Use New Grants to Tackle Community Issues

FORT COLLINS, Colo., January 25, 2022 – Fort Collins tops national rankings for best places to live. Locals even nicknamed it “the Choice City.” But many local organizations know that it is not a choice city for everyone.

  • The most recent U.S. census data showed 16% of Fort Collins residents living below the poverty line, above the state level of 9%. The census data comes from the 2019 American Community Survey, five-year estimates.
  • Nearly 60% of students experiencing homelessness in Poudre School District do not graduate in four years, according to the district’s graduation statistics (page 6).
  • Sixty percent of renters in Fort Collins are cost-burdened, meaning that the household spends more than 30% of their income on housing, according to the City of Fort Collins Housing Strategic Plan (page 30).

Local nonprofits, schools and government units are using new grants to act on these issues and more. Bohemian Fund grants from Bohemian Foundation support organizations in their work to make Fort Collins a more equitable place. Each organization can apply to receive a grant up to $30,000.

Last month 36 organizations received grants totaling $587,000. Some highlights include.

  • Beats By Girlz gives women, girls and gender-expansive individuals access to technical tools to make music. The organization will use a grant to challenge longstanding sexism, racism and classism in the music industry.
  • Homeward Alliance will use a grant to support their Family Housing Program. Homeward Alliance uses data to understand community needs. Numbers from Poudre School District show 1,387 students did not have safe and stable housing during the 2019-2020 school year. Data from across the state shows 68% of students experiencing homelessness are students of color.
  • La Cocina is an organization that relies on the expertise of Latinx individuals and families it works with to design solutions. La Cocina will use a Bohemian Fund grant for La Cocina’s ¡Las Favas! program. It works with Latinx women who care for children in their homes and Latinx families with young children.

The next chance to request a grant is coming up. The application opens Jan. 27 and closes Feb. 24. Find out how to make a grant request during a workshop Jan. 25, Jan. 26 or Feb. 1. Register at BohemianFoundation.org/bohemian-fund/workshops-applicant-support. A group of community reviewers and Bohemian Foundation staff selects applicants for awards.

Click here for a complete list of organizations that received grants last month:

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colorado, Bohemian Foundation supports local, national and global efforts to build strong communities. Visit BohemianFoundation.org for more information.

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