And the $50,000 Grant Goes to…

At the HandsOn Network Innovation and Social Impact Forum June 17, four HandsOn Network affiliates pitched inventive programs getting results in their communities – for a shot at a $50,000 grant.

brian_williams.jpgBrian Williams of Hands On Nashville, left, thanks JPMorgan Chase for a $50,000 grant.

The packed, interactive forum at the Conference on Volunteering and Service celebrated the One America campaign. At last year’s Conference, JPMorgan Chase and Points of Light kicked off the campaign, which included a nationwide tour, uniting unlikely allies to help students succeed, tackle food insecurity and improve the environment.

During the June 17 forum, with the exuberance at times of a pep rally – the audience cheering and pounding blue thunder sticks – Hands On Nashville, the Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz County (Calif.), HandsOn Twin Cities (Minn.) and HandsOn Genesee (Mich.) showed video presentations of their work.

They then had to sell a panel of judges on their ideas. The panel included Lamman Rucker from “Tyler Perry’s Meet the Browns”; Laura Turner Seydel of Captain Planet Foundation; Taproot Foundation President and CEO Liz Hamburg; and Coxe Curry & Associates Senior Consultant Ann Cramer. Joe Sibilia, CEO of CSRWire, served as moderator.

innovation_photo.jpgZelda Magnuson, left, and Karen Delaney cheer at the forum with thunder sticks.

Hands On Nashville won the $50,000 for its work mobilizing volunteers to make homes in low-income neighborhoods more energy efficient, saving homeowners as much as $500 a year on their utility bills.  The remaining three organizations shared $50,000 in grants to enhance their volunteer programs.

Representing Hands On Nashville, President and CEO Brian Williams thanked JPMorgan Chase, saying, “They have stepped up in a very remarkable way. … It is amazing to watch the transformation in what we’re calling the corporate social responsibility space over the past five or 10 years, and I can’t wait to see where that takes us.”

For more coverage of the 2014 Conference on Volunteering and Service, sponsored by UPS, click here.