The Jeannette Rankin Foundation is an organization that supports low-income women, ages 35 and older, who are motivated to change their lives through education.
What is the Jeannette Rankin Foundation ( JRF)
JRF was founded in 1976 with $16,000 provided by a bequest left by Jeannette Rankin, the first woman elected to U.S. Congress. The endowment is now valued at more than $700,000.
JRF awards grants to women who have a vision of how an education will benefit themselves, their families and their communities. The grants are not restricted to tuition, but may be used for books, transportation, childcare, or other living expenses to support the recipient toward her educational goals. In 1978, the first grant was awarded to one woman in the amount of $500. In 2006, JRF awarded 78 grants in the amount of $2,000 each. Over the years, 533 grants have been awarded to women from all over the United States totaling more than $848,000.
Who does the Jeannette Rankin Foundation help
All of the applicants must meet low-income requirements, be U.S. citizens, and be enrolled or accepted in an accredited undergraduate or vocational program. JRF recipients are women ages 35 and older who have overcome tremendous obstacles to work towards their educational goals. More than 80 percent of JRF grant recipients have either graduated or are still in school.
How is the Jeannette Rankin Foundation funded
The Foundation's funding comes from membership dues, individual donations, business sponsorships, private foundation grants and an endowment. From 2002-2006, more than 1,300 individuals made contributions to JRF in amounts ranging from $15 to $25,000.
How can you help the Jeannette Rankin Foundation
Spread the Word - Women who receive JRF grants are located across the U.S., yet few people know about the Foundation. JRF seeks national awareness of its grant program for women in college.
Support women succeeding through education - Your donations will help provide grants for this underserved group. You can donate online, www.rankinfoundation.org or by mail, Jeannette Rankin Foundation, PO Box 6653, Athens GA 30604. Individuals, families and friends can pool resources to donate in honor or in memory of a loved one. A gift of $2,000 will provide a named JRF grant. Circles of Support are extensions of JRF that raise money for and increase awareness of JRF. The goal of each Circle is to increase membership and raise funds to help women in college. Planned giving opportunities are available also.
The Jeannette Rankin Foundation has many positive indicators: growth in the number of scholarships awarded annually, increased funds in the endowment, and success of JRF recipients in completing degree programs.
Among challenges for the future are increased costs of higher education, restricted endowment fund income, and increasing interest to provide renewal scholarships. Thanks to solid support from JRF members and a strong record of providing a quality program, JRF has the opportunity to help more women in the future.
If you would like more information or to help JRF and women succeeding through education, please visit the JRF web site at www.rankinfoundation.org
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