Member News

Ball Brothers Foundation Awards More than $3.3 Million in First Round of 2021 Grants

Friday, June 25, 2021

In its first round of grants for 2021, Ball Brothers Foundation’s Board of Directors approved more than $3.3 million in funding, including COVID-19 vaccine distribution and messaging support to local health organizations, and recovery and rebuilding support to Delaware County schools.

The COVID-19 vaccination support totals $250,000, with grants awarded to Ball State University, Delaware County Health Department, Delaware County Office of Information, IU Health Foundation, Meridian Health Services and Open Door Health Services. These grants were a part of Ball Brothers Foundation’s multi-phase funding effort. The third phase, “Operation Bright Light,” invited health organizations to apply for specially allotted funding designed to support local vaccination efforts, including information campaigns, clinic staffing, site expansions and more. Operation Bright Light grants provide flexible funding, allowing for the organizations to easily and quickly adapt to ever-evolving changes as needed.

Grants to schools throughout Delaware County also provide flexible funding, supporting preK–12 education recovery, rebuilding, and innovation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As schools across Delaware County recalibrate and make adjustments to the delivery of education, we recognize that districts and schools need flexible funding to meet new challenges,” said Jud Fisher, president and CEO of the foundation. “From remediation efforts to social-emotional health supports for students and teachers, there is no lack of need for support.”

These Innovation Grants include funding for social-emotional needs of both students and staff; an outdoor classroom to allow not only students to gather, but also to create a space for the greater community to use; a makerspace; additional career and technical education opportunities; a robotics team; and new band uniforms.

In addition to Operation Bright Light and the school grants, this year’s first round of Ball Brothers Foundation funding supports many of Muncie’s steadfast, long-term organizations as they recover from the pandemic and continue to provide services, support, learning and outdoor recreation opportunities, and quality of life improvements for people of all ages in the community. Additional grants awarded include:

Arts, Culture, & Humanities

  • Community Enhancement Projects: $140,000 to assist in the creation of Muncie Memory Spiral, which will be an interactive installation in Heekin Park designed to share Muncie history and provide a variety of educational opportunities
  • Muncie Civic Theatre: $15,000 to support the 2021–2022 season
  • Music for All: $25,000 for the 2021 Music for All virtual summer learning experience


  • The Arc of Indiana Foundation: $100,000 for Erskine Green Training Institute support
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Muncie: two-year funding totaling $300,000 for operating support
  • Huffer Memorial Children’s Center: $100,000 to provide a safe environment and help young students to enter school ready to learn
  • Motivate Our Minds: $40,000 to support academic personnel and programming, as well as curricula-related expenses
  • Project Leadership: two-year funding totaling $391,000 to support the continuation of services related to college and career connections
  • Purdue Extension Blackford County: $45,600 to assist in the purchase of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and sensors that are vital in public safety work, as well as for training program development
  • Ross Community Center: two-year funding totaling $190,000 for 2021–2023 operating support
  • YMCA of Muncie: $150,000 for operational support and improvements at Camp Crosley, as well as general YMCA operations


  • Delaware County Soil & Water Conservation District: $70,000 for the implementation of the district’s 2020–2024 Strategic Plan
  • Red-tail Land Conservancy: $50,000 to assist with outreach efforts to landowners, as well as a planned giving program that will help build long-term sustainability

Human Services

  • Greater Muncie, IN Habitat for Humanity: two-year funding totaling $445,000 to support the housing program from 2021–2023
  • Indiana Youth Institute: $45,000 to enhance organizational capacity of area nonprofits in fiscal year 2022
  • Muncie Sports Commission: $100,000 for the ICE League and operating support
  • United Way of Delaware, Henry, & Randolph Counties: $75,000 in a matching grant for the 2021 campaign
  • Youth Opportunity Center: $17,800 to assist with start-up costs for a new PROMISE residential program and to support an additional Family Preservation Team during training
  • YWCA of Central Indiana: $30,000 for an emergency shelter and to support the C.O.T.S. Stay Program, which provides complimentary, overnight temporary shelter

Public Society Benefit

  • American Legion Post 19: $31,500 for building repairs
  • Cardinal Greenways: two-year funding totaling $400,000 for operating support
  • Muncie Action Plan: $13,000 to support neighborhood-based projects and funding for a paid coordinator position
  • Sustainable Muncie Corporation: $150,000 to support Madjax and Future of Work programs
  • Taylor University: $85,000 for the creation of an access road to a canoe launch in Taylor Wilderness

Preliminary applications for the foundation’s next round of grants are due July 15. The foundation also regularly accepts applications for Rapid Grants from February through November of each year. For more information on Ball Brothers Foundation grants, visit

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