MACF Grants $50,000 to Independence Inc. for Community Kitchen

Posted: Nov 28 2023

The Minot Area Community Foundation (MACF) is pleased to announce a grant of $50,000 to Independence, Inc. for the Building Dreams Community Kitchen. Funding was made possible through the MACF’s Mike & Dorothy Dolan Fund, Ovid F. Boisjolie Fund, and the Arnold I. Besserud Fund.  
The goal of the Community Kitchen is to address issues around isolation and food insecurity in people with disabilities. Individuals with disabilities often face challenges in accessing and obtaining nutritious food due to a range of factors such as limited mobility, financial constraints, communication barriers, and an over reliance of others to meet their basic needs. They also face barriers that create isolation such as physical barriers, social stigma, limited accessibility, and a lack of inclusive opportunities.
“The staff and board of Independence, Inc. are so excited about the possibilities of the Building Dreams Community Kitchen, and we are so thankful for the support of the Minot Area Community Foundation in making this possible,” states Scott Burlingame, Independence, Inc. Executive Director. “This kitchen will not only be used to teach culinary skills, but also create the opportunity for mentorship and foster the development of community.”
The Community Kitchen will support and enhance existing programs such as the Building and Encouraging Youth Opportunities in North Dakota (BEYOND) program, which prepares students with disabilities for adulthood. It will also support the Adult Peer Mentoring, Independent Living Skills, and Nursing Home and Community Transition programs.
“This is an opportunity for Independence, Inc. to provide new and unique programs for all their clients to learn or refresh basic kitchen skills.  Additionally, it will also allow for collaboration with other non-profit partners to enhance life skills that will improve the quality of life for those individuals” commented Jason Zimmerman, President of MACF.
The Building Dreams Community Kitchen will serve as a hub for community integration initiatives, for people with all abilities who are in need. When it’s not being used by Independence, Inc., it will be available as a venue for cooking classes, culinary workshops, and events by other community partners.
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