Do you have a good idea to make Montezuma county a more livable community, but don't know where to start? A new foundation is here to help and you don't have to be a registered nonprofit to benefit from it support. You're watching the local news network brought to you by express employment professionals and whole health family medicine. I'm Wendy Graham Settle. The LOR foundation recently established a new presence in Montezuma County, when it hired Cortez resident, Nicci Croley, to serve as the foundation's liaison in the area, calling itself a startup accelerator for community-driven ideas. LOR makes a long-term investment in a community by supporting many projects, both big and small that will immediately and measurably improve a community's livability.
The foundation has been around for awhile. They've actually, they actually worked in different ways, a lot of conservationism, things like that, and just realized when they were putting money in multiple locations, you really don't see that impact. And so to really become invested in a community was why they decided to go to this new model.
What's unusual about the foundation is that LOR provides support to both individuals with good ideas, as well as nonprofits and other organizations. Sometimes that helped me, albeit a direct grant, assistance finding another appropriate funder or connecting residents and organizations with each other. Croley's first project in Cortez helped Melissa Waters and the Cortez Cultural center established an entrepreneurial apprenticeship program for native American students. LOR provided funding for equipment to start a pop-up craft beverage cart that will employ students and teach them how to manage the business.
The community members are the ones that are doing the work. We're helping initiate either through funding or making connections to other funders or to resources may be toolkits on how things have been done before. So LOR can kind of help in a variety of ways, but these are individuals in our community who are bringing these ideas forward and really putting to implement them in the community. Most of the time they do end up being housed under a nonprofit, Onward, a legacy foundation, the community foundation here, we're working in partnership with them for some fiscal sponsorship for those individuals. So there's some real opportunity for our communities to work together.
The foundation has offices in Taos, New Mexico and Lander, Wyoming with plans to open an office in Montana and a second Colorado community later this year. Their projects so far have addressed local economies, education, environment, health, housing, transportation, and water quality. If you have a good idea that you think could benefit the community, send Crowley an email at nicciatlorfoundation.org. Thanks for watching this edition of the local news network. I'm Wendy Graham Settle.