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Forever Rush County continues fundraising; grant cycle scheduled
Kara Jecha, Forever Rush County committee chair

The finish line is in sight for Forever Rush County committee members who are only about $7,500 shy of their endowment-fund goal at Golden Belt Community Foundation (GBCF).

“I cannot tell you how grateful we are to have come this far,” said Kara Jecha of Timken, committee chair. “All we need is a little kick of adrenaline to reach the $100,000 mark. We are so thankful for those who have brought us to this point.

“We hope people who haven’t been able to contribute yet can find it in their hearts to donate,” Jecha added. “Any amount is most welcome. Those smaller donations add up quickly.”

Matching funds are donated by the Glenn and Elaine Mull Family Fund at GBCF.

Previously, the goal was to raise $100,000 by the end of last year. However, the pandemic slowed in-person fundraising efforts and the new deadline is the end of this year.

“We have the Golden Belt Community Foundation Board of Directors to thank for this,” Jecha said. “Their foresight in granting an extension allows us the opportunity to reach our goal.

“Rush County residents and those who have ties to our many smaller communities realize the importance of an endowment fund. We trust they will come through in the months ahead.”

The endowment fund at GBCF can be used in a variety of areas. Examples include parks and playgrounds; libraries and education; health and social services; long-term care; and city projects.

Grant applications

Forever Rush County encourages representatives of charitable organizations to talk with their neighbors about ideas for local programs and projects.

Grant applications will be accepted online from May 1 to June 15 at Approximately $3,500 will be available this year.

Any 501(c)(3), school, city or county government, or religious organization is welcome to submit a request, beginning May 1.

Endowment funds are set aside for long-term benefits. The principal amount is permanently protected, while the fund’s income supports charitable causes.

“The Foundation provided the resources and know-how to raise more than $92,000 so far and supported our committee every step of the way,” Jecha said. “Now we need to follow through with ideas on how we can use the first grant award.”

Christy Tustin, GBCF executive director, noted that “endowment building entails hard work and patience by the committee and donors who care about their communities’ future. Rush County residents should be excited about how the endowment will create and sustain a variety of local efforts.

“Justifiably, people want to know what it will support but that is difficult to determine because of the many possibilities. The fund will support something different every year. It will be fun to look back in 10 years to see the benefits to Rush County communities.”

At $28 million in total assets and more than 180 funds under management, the Golden Belt Community Foundation has been connecting people who care to causes that matter since 1996. Golden Belt Community Foundation exists to provide non-profit organizations in central Kansas with a permanent source of support and to serve as a vehicle for charitable giving for donors. GBCF serves the counties of Barton, Pawnee, Rush, and Stafford.  For more information about Golden Belt Community Foundation, call (620) 792-3000 or visit their website at