New Balance Foundation Kicks in $300,000 to Send Sick Kids to Summer Camp

Summer camp has been an annual tradition in families for generations, but some camps serve a more meaningful purpose than others. Camp Sunshine is a retreat for families with children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. To help Camp Sunshine celebrate its 30th anniversary, the New Balance Foundation offered a $300,000 challenge to match all gifts from new and returning donors.

The New Balance Foundation only awards grants to programs and geographical areas that are relevant to its business. The core program focus is the prevention of childhood obesity, but other health and athletic endeavors are still in the game. The foundation’s geographic focus is on Boston and Lawrence in Massachusetts and Norridgewock, Skowkegan, and Norway in Maine (Read New Balance Foundation Profile).

This isn’t New Balance’s first commitment to Camp Sunshine. This athletic shoe corporate foundation has awarded nearly $600,000 to the camp and also sponsored weeklong family sessions in its favorite five communities. Camp Sunshine is a free year-round program that includes 24-hour onsite medical, psychosocial support, and bereavement groups. New Balance’s challenge grant supports the camp’s “Go the Distance” campaign, which challenges supporters to fundraise while participating in 30 distinct endurance events across the country throughout 2014.

“We are so thrilled and honored to get this tremendous boost from the New Balance Foundation, which has been a strong supporter, both in financial contributions and volunteer hours, for many years,” said Anna Gould, Board Chair and Co-Founder of Camp Sunshine.

Also deviating from the childhood obesity focus, New Balance has awarded grants to Boston Connects, the New England Aquarium, and Rosie’s Place. Unfortunately for new grantseekers who have never received a grant from the New Balance Foundation, the 2014 grant application deadline has already passed. But looking ahead, new organizations are typically invited to submit a one-page concept paper around early March each year.

Keep in mind that this is a foundation that likes to stick with its current grantees, and it only funds two or three new programs each year. General inquiries about New Balance grantmaking can be directed to newbalancefoundation@newbalance.com