ST. CLOUD - Ten area non-profits will benefit from over $40,000 worth of grants  from the Central Minnesota Community Foundation's "Women's Fund."

One recipient is Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota, who will receive a $4,500 grant to strengthen their "Girls to Graduates: Developing Leaders for Life" program.

Development Director Shari Wahlin says the goal of the program is to prepare roughly 275 middle and high school girls from at-risk backgrounds for the challenges of college.

Wahlin says many of the girls will be the first in their families to attend college, and Big Brother Big sisters will help by hosting readiness workshops and trainings.

The Women's Fund has provided $600,000 in grants since it began in 2002.

Other announced local grant recipients include:

  • $5,500 to the Starfish Fund's mentorship program
  • $5,000 to Central Minnesota Sustainability Project
  • $5,000 to Quiet Oaks Hospice House
  • $5,000 to St. Cloud Area Readiness Pipeline for Sci-Gals programming
  • $4,500 to Hands Across the World for the Learning Together program
  • $4,500 to RESOURCE for Projected LEAD the Way Women
  • $1,500 to Boys and Girls Club's Date SMART program
  • $4,250 to the Girl Scouts of MN and WI Lakes and Pines summer programs
  • $2,000 to Anna Marie's Alliance for Talahi Girls program