Dear Friends,

Over the last few months, AMY Wellness Foundation and our grant partners have been hard at work serving our mountain communities. Through our year-round funding opportunities, we have continued to partner with organizations working to improve health and wellness through innovative, collaborative, and transformative programs.

We are excited to share updates from our Foundation about our new grant partners, philanthropy at work, and how you can give back to our communities. We hope you enjoy and connect with us!

Gratefully Yours,
Luke Howe
Executive Director
Capacity Building
Operational Support - Community Trainings
Williams YMCA of Avery County

Grant funds will be used to support remote learning, snow camp, summer cap, and the after school program to support the educational, social, emotional, and nutrition needs of our children and to enable parents to go to work while their children are in a safe, developmentally rich environment.
Dig In! Yancey Community Garden

Dig In addresses food insecurity in Yancey County by ensuring that our community plans for and can depend on a local harvest of vegetables when our neighbors experience financial hardship. Funds from AMYWF will be used to provide support for two permanent staff positions that are directly addressing Food Insecurity in our region, Executive Director and Farm Manager.
Sustaining Essential And Rural Community Healthcare WNC

SEARCH WNC promotes safe, quality, affordable local healthcare for the people of Mitchell and Yancey Counties in Western North Carolina. With support from AMYWF, SEARCH will hire a part-time staff member to help their operations to ensure our region has equitable access to care.
Mayland Community College

Mayland Community College continues to provide students with enrichment and higher education opportunities. AMY Wellness funding will support the Exploring the Night Skies project, providing programming materials for the Glenn and Carol Arthur Planetarium.

Crossnore School & Children's Home

In communities across the state, hundreds of teenagers and young adults age out of the foster care system each year. Not only do these young adults lack the support of family or community, they face the likelihood of adverse life outcomes including homelessness, educational hardships, poverty, employment opportunities, mental and physical health conditions and more. Through a partnership with AMYWF, Crossnore will use funds to support their Young Independent Living program to provide support for a program coordinator, housing, and transportation assistance.
COVID-19 Rapid Relief
Greatest Need

Mountain Community Health Partnership

MCHP has played a huge part in providing COVID-19 vaccines to our communities. With support from AMYWF, MCHP was able to hire an RN Vaccination Manager to address and oversee MCHP's vaccination plan allowing a more streamline approach.
Family Resilience
Mental Health - IPV - Education - Child Poverty

Pisgah Legal Services

AMYWF has provided support to Pisgah Legal Services’ provision of free civil legal aid to underserved, low-income victims of crime; primarily victims of domestic and sexual violence, child maltreatment, hate crimes, and elder abuse in Western North Carolina. Particularly in rural areas of WNC, victims are isolated from the services needed to escape abuse and rebuild their lives, circumstances which are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Philanthropy at Work
While our 2021 grant partners are just beginning their work, our 2020 partners are still making huge impacts across Yancey, Mitchell, and Avery counties.
MY Neighbors, an all volunteer eldercare network, recently received a Capacity Building grant from AMY to reimburse volunteer drivers who use their personal vehicles to give Yancey County seniors needed rides to and from doctor, dental and hospital visits, rehabilitation services, exercise classes, grocery shopping, social and family visits, events, voting and many other activities.
Camp Spring Creek held a training, provided by support from AMY Wellness Foundation, for teachers in the AMY region to learn the Orton Gillingham method of teaching reading to better support their students. We were thrilled to attend some of the training and speak to a few of the teachers about their experience and why this training was so important for our community.
In case you missed it, leaders from WAMY Community Action spoke to Bruce Ikard on WTOE/WKYK Radio Community Close Up about two programs funded by AMYWF. Listen to the two part series now on their website to learn about the housing work being done to support our communities. Listen Here
AMY Wellness Foundation Delivers Reusable Food Bags to Local
Food Partners
Over the last year, organizations working in food security have seen a huge increase in demand due to the effects of COVID-19. AMY Wellness Foundation wanted to help alleviate some of the burden by providing reusable food bags to organizations working in food security. “Our local food partners have really stepped up during this pandemic to provide for those in need. We wanted them to have a sustainable, reusable product to help lower costs and provide something their clients will be able to use again,” said Luke Howe, Executive Director, AMY Wellness Foundation.

The Foundation distributed 500 reusable food bags to five organizations across Avery, Mitchell, and Yancey counties. “We’re always in search of bags for food distribution,” said John Miller, Executive Director, Reconciliation House. “Being given a consistent stream of a supply will lessen the burden on us and will be used to put our produce and frozen goods in for our families,” he said.
Feeding Avery Families had a different use for the bags. “For a new client at Feeding Avery Families the first thing that happens is they’re greeted and given a welcome bag,” said Dick Larson, Executive Director. “It’s important our clients feel welcome. For a lot of people, this is the first time they have had to ask for help, through no fault of their own, especially right now during the pandemic. We want them to feel comfortable and having this bag to carry the welcome items will be a part of that,” he continued. The Foundation also distributed to Neighbors Feeding Neighbors and Reaching Avery Ministries who both said they will be using the bags for people in need of food and personal care items.
Additionally, TRACTOR Food and Farms’ clinical referral program will also benefit from the reusable food bags. “AMY funded the clinical referral program that supports 220 families across the region,” said Dru Zucchino, Executive Director. “The food bags will be used to provide locally sourced produce and veggies in the AMY region,” he said.

AMY Wellness Foundation is committed to helping build capacity and being an invested and active member of the three counties it serves. AMYWF is grateful to all of the organizations working to make Avery, Mitchell, and Yancey counties a healthy place to live.
How to Give Back?
Redirect Your Check

AMY Wellness Foundation recognizes the increased needs our community members are facing as a result of the pandemic. In addition to our grant opportunities, we invite community members to donate their stimulus check or tax refund check to an area in need of their choosing. AMY Wellness Foundation will match a percent of your gift to your area of choice.

Many people are in need financially amid the pandemic, and the $600 stimulus check is a huge help. For others, the stimulus check is a bonus they may not need. Some people are choosing to donate their stimulus check to support those in need in their community. AMY Wellness Foundation would like to help individuals in need by matching any stimulus check donated to AMY Wellness Foundation. We are also offering the same match for tax refund checks as well.

Donate $600 = AMY will add $100 to the area of your choosing
Donate $1,200 = AMY will add $200 to the area of your choosing
Donate $2,400 = AMY will add $400 to the area of your choosing

*To receive the match from AMYWF, please mark your designation for Mental Health, Housing, or Food Insecurity and add a comment “Redirect your check”.*

“My family received a COVID-19 Stimulus Check in January. On a fixed income, we are doing ok financially and were not expecting this check. I, personally, felt like there are so many people going through hardships right now that this money should go to the people who really need it. We are familiar with AMY Wellness Foundation and the work they are doing locally and we knew if we donated our stimulus check to AMY they would be able to help individuals in our community. Learning that our money will be matched by $100 from AMY Wellness makes it even better.”
The Schultz Family
How to Apply?

AMY Wellness Foundation grant opportunities are open year-round. Details on the funding opportunities and how to apply can be found on our