Consumers Energy Foundation awards $475K in grants


Consumers Energy employees who volunteered at nonprofits gather for a group photo. Photo via

Consumers Energy is starting off 2014 on a happy note for nonprofits in the region.

Consumers Energy, the largest utility of natural gas and electricity in Michigan, said this month that its philanthropic arm, the Consumers Energy Foundation, will award more than $475,000 in grants to 17 Michigan nonprofits.

Of the total, $205,000 will go toward West Michigan organizations.

"You can appreciate the good work that goes out in Michigan's communities, big and small, from looking at the nonprofit projects we are supporting," said David Mengebier, president of the Consumers Energy Foundation. "We are proud to play a role in helping bring these initiatives and programs closer to completion and building a strong future for our state."

West Michigan grant winners

Community Foundation for Muskegon County, Muskegon: $50,000 to help relocate the Muskegon Farmers Market to a year round, downtown location.

Lakeshore Museum Center, Muskegon: $50,000 for Michigan's Heritage Park, a tourist attraction on 20 acres that will tell the story of Michigan's history through interactive exhibits.

Goodwill Industries of Southwestern Michigan, Kalamazoo: $50,000 to support the Read & Seed Family Literacy Program, focusing on adult literacy and providing literacy activities to help 34 low-income families.

Kalamazoo County Land Bank Authority, Kalamazoo: $30,000 to support the Riverview Launch project, converting a tax-foreclosed property into a hub of community programming based on healthy, active lifestyles.

Jordan Lake Trail Board, Lake Odessa: $15,000 for a pedestrian/bike trail around Jordan Lake that can be used for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in winter.

Regent Theatre, Allegan: $10,000 to help convert the theater's projection equipment from 35 mm film to a digital format.

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