Press Room - Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation's Communications Department is ready to assist members of the media, as well as grantees interested in publicizing their awards.

Dozens of Fort Collins Organizations and Businesses Will Offer Free Services to Individuals and Families at Project Homeless Connect

FORT COLLINS, Colo., March 21, 2016 - Fort Collins’ annual Project Homeless Connect is scheduled to take place on April 8, 8 a.m.-noon. Project Homeless Connect is a one-day, one-stop event on that offers a range of free services to hundreds of people who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness.

Project Homeless Connect will take place at the Northside Aztlan Center, 112 Willow St. A free breakfast will be available in the morning, and a free BBQ lunch will be served from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Nearly 60 local nonprofits, government agencies and businesses will provide on-site services. Homeward 2020, Bohemian Foundation, the Murphy Center and Colorado State University Student Leadership, Involvement and Community Engagement (SLiCE) co-produce the event with support from United Way of Larimer County.

Free services this year will include basic car inspection; bike repair; medical screenings; basic dental screenings for adults and children; eye exams; family photos; haircuts; housing information; veterans’ services; ID and legal services; employment services; counseling; government benefits; child care and children’s activities; bus passes; massages; toiletry packages; pet health care; and pet food.

During the event, each participant is paired one-to-one with a volunteer who helps the participant navigate the variety of services available. Last year, SLiCE recruited more than 400 CSU students and Fort Collins community members to volunteer.

The Project Homeless Connect concept originated in San Francisco in 2004. In 2005, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness launched the National Project Homeless Connect Partnership. Since 2008, more than 200 cities across the U.S., Canada and Australia have adopted the initiative. Fort Collins welcomed its first Project Homeless Connect in 2010. Since then, more than 2,000 individuals and families experiencing homelessness in the Fort Collins community have participated.

Homeward 2020 is an assembly of community and agency leaders working in support of the Ten Year Plan to make homelessness in Fort Collins rare, short lived and non-recurring through a housing first approach. Homeward 2020 provides community leadership by serving as a convener, catalyst, data driver and advocate, and through the collective expertise and experience of its members.


Bohemian Foundation Hosts Board Training Workshop

Essentials in Governance Workshop. Bohemian Foundation will host a workshop for executive directors and board members of local nonprofits. In this session conducted by board governance expert, Emily Davis, participants will learn about specific resources, strategies and recommendations on:

  • Governing roles and responsibilities for executive directors and board members.
  • Clear roles, expectations and commitments of board and staff in organizational leadership.
  • Various hats board members wear and when they should be worn.
  • Managing effective meetings and communications.
  • Strategies for effective recruitment and retention of boards.

This workshop is for executive directors and board members of local nonprofits.

Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016. 1:30-4:30 p.m.

The Armory, 314 E. Mountain Ave.

Board service is a critical component of nonprofit leadership and organizational success; however, expectations and best practices are often unclear. This session will provide information about best practices and strategies to create and sustain great governance between the board of directors and executive director.

Details: to learn more or to register to attend this workshop. Space is limited, please RSVP no later than Jan. 13. There is no cost to attend.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

About presenter Emily Davis:
Davis is president of Emily Davis Consulting and a BoardSource Consulting Associate. She has served as a nonprofit founder, philanthropic grant maker, staff member and volunteer across a wide variety of organizations locally and nationally. She has authored publications in magazines including Nonprofit World, AFP’s Advancing Philanthropy and BoardSource’s Spark among others. She has her master’s degree in nonprofit management from Regis University and serves as an adjunct professor in that program. Davis was recently named one of the 2015 40 Under Forty Young Business Leaders in Boulder Valley by BizWest.


Bohemian Foundation Seeks Grant Applicants

Bohemian Foundation is pleased to announce that the Pharos Fund is now accepting applications for the Spring 2016 grant round. The Pharos Fund is a responsive grant making initiative of Bohemian Foundation’s Community Programs. Community Programs goals were recently updated and expanded, so organizations that may not have been previously eligible are encouraged to review the fund’s updated guidelines.

Pharos Fund is pleased to announce that it is now accepting applications from both 501(c)(3) organizations and eligible governmental units serving a charitable purpose.

Applicants must provide services within the Poudre School District boundary. Applicants do not need to be headquartered in Fort Collins to receive funding. However, applicants must serve clients within the Poudre School District boundary or have a direct impact on individuals in our grantmaking area.

Bohemian Foundation will accept applications until 11:59 p.m. on Feb. 4.

To apply for a grant, visit


  • Applicants may apply for the following types of support: program support, general operating support or project support.
  • Pharos Fund grant applications are considered twice per year, once in the spring and once in the fall.
  • Applicants may request any funding amount up to $30,000 per application.
  • For Pharos Fund FAQ and information on upcoming workshops, visit
  • For further information, visit, call 970-221-2636 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Bohemian Foundation Awards More Than $500k to Local Nonprofits

Bohemian Foundation today announced that it awarded $500,500 to 33 local nonprofits working to encourage and enable youth to thrive, empower individuals and families on the path toward economic stability and strengthen our vibrant Fort Collins community. Bohemian Foundation awards Pharos Fund grants twice every year. Today’s announcement brings the foundation’s Pharos Fund awards to a total of $1,008,980 in 2015. Since its inception in 2001, Bohemian Foundation Community Programs has awarded more than $15 million in Pharos Fund grants to a variety of nonprofits serving the Fort Collins area.

“We were pleased to see how applicants responded to our expanded goals and new application,” said Sara Maranowicz, Bohemian Foundation’s Community Programs director. “Our selection committee looks to understand the impacts local organizations are making. We learn more about our community through each Pharos Fund application process, and we appreciate how the applicants are helping our community thrive. We are committed to supporting local nonprofits who demonstrate their progress on important community issues.”

Pharos Fund is a responsive grant making initiative of Bohemian Foundation that makes awards up to $30,000 to eligible 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and governmental units. A committee comprised of Bohemian Foundation board members, Bohemian staff and community members selects grantees through a competitive application process.

Full List of Fall 2015 Pharos Fund Recipients:

A total of $500,500 was awarded to 33 organizations.

  • Organization Name
  • Project
  • Award
  • Organization Name Book Trust
  • Project General Support
  • Award $30,000
  • Organization Name HalfMoon Arts
  • ProjectYouth Arts Apprenticeship Program
  • Award $7,000
  • Organization Name Homeless Gear
  • ProjectOne Village One Family
  • Award $10,000
  • Total
  • $500,500

Bohemian Foundation will begin accepting applications for the next Pharos Fund round starting Jan. 5, 2016. With recently expanded Community Programs goals, the foundation is encouraging nonprofits and governmental units to review the updated Pharos Fund guidelines to learn more. Visit for more information.

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colo., Bohemian Foundation works to empower citizens and impact communities through its responsive grant making programs and special initiatives.


Murphy Center Open Today Under New Management and Ownership

Fort Collins’ Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center will open at 8 a.m. Dec. 7 under new management and ownership. The Murphy Center will continue to fulfill its original mission of serving people who are homeless and near homeless.

The four organizations that will assume day-to-day operations of the center are Homeless Gear, which is the organization that will serve as the center’s managing partner; Catholic Charities; Neighbor to Neighbor; and SummitStone Health Partners. Murphy Center LLC will become the building owner. Bohemian Foundation will provide support to the Murphy Center LLC for building costs.

SERVE 6.8, the manager of the Murphy Center since 2013, stepped out of its role at the Murphy Center at the close of the day on Dec. 4. SERVE 6.8 took responsibility for operations at the center in July of 2013. The group of community partners and SERVE 6.8 have worked together to provide uninterrupted services to Murphy Center guests during this transition.

The group of community partners will maintain the Murphy Center as a space in which multiple agencies can provide a continuum of services to individuals and families who are homeless or near homeless.


Operations and Ownership of Murphy Center Transition from SERVE 6.8 to Group of Community Partners

Fort Collins nonprofit SERVE 6.8 today announced that it plans to transfer ownership and management of the Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope to a coalition of community partners in December of this year.

Under this new ownership and management, the Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope, commonly known as the Murphy Center, will continue to fulfill its mission of serving people who are homeless in Larimer County. The coalition of community partners includes four local organizations that will assume day-to-day operations of the Murphy Center, and Bohemian Foundation, which will become the building owner. The four organizations that will assume day-to-day operations are Homeless Gear, which is the organization that will serve as the center’s managing partner; Catholic Charities; Neighbor to Neighbor; and SummitStone Health Partners.

Homeward 2020 will serve as the Murphy Center Stakeholder Council to provide guidance on the community’s homeless response system.

SERVE 6.8, the manager of the Murphy Center since 2013, remains committed to addressing homelessness in Fort Collins, but plans to focus future efforts on preventative strategies, which include operation of the new SERVE 6.8 Resource Center at 1600 E. Mulberry St. The coalition of community partners and SERVE 6.8 are working together to ensure a smooth transition aimed at providing uninterrupted services to guests at the Murphy Center. The group plans to complete the center’s transition to new management on Dec. 7.

“The City of Fort Collins has been a long-time collaborator on homelessness issues, and based on this experience, we are confident that this coalition of nonprofits has the right experience, staff and commitment to serve people who are homeless or near homeless at the Murphy Center,” said Deputy City Manager Jeff Mihelich. “We thank the staff and board of directors of SERVE 6.8 for their leadership and dedication over the past two years, and are pleased that they will continue to serve the needs of our community in other important ways,”

Since taking over the Murphy Center in July of 2013, SERVE 6.8 has facilitated 79,424 visits at the center.

“It has been our honor to serve the families and individuals who rely on the Murphy Center for assistance and to help stabilize this critical community resource during the past two years,” said Mike Walker, executive director of SERVE 6.8. “We are committed to our local community and look forward to continuing to strive to create significant and sustainable change in northern Colorado through other service initiatives. The Resource Center located at 1600 E. Mulberry is serving an average of 60 people per week who are at risk of being homeless if they are not connected to needed resources in our community.”

The new coalition of community partners will maintain the Murphy Center as a space in which multiple agencies can collectively and collaboratively provide a continuum of services to individuals who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness. The agencies will work closely together to ensure that services are coordinated and delivered in accordance with best practices.

United Way of Larimer County, an organization firmly committed to supporting people who are homeless through services provided at the Murphy Center, is helping to facilitate a smooth transition to the new operating and ownership partners. United Way and a number of foundations, churches and individual donors provide funding for the Murphy Center.

About Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope

Named in honor of Sister Mary Alice Murphy, a Larimer County pioneer of service to neighbors in need, the Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope celebrates compassionate action and serves as a resource center for families and individuals who face homelessness. The Murphy Center opened in 2009 and has proven to be a model for community collaboration and an essential resource in Larimer County. More information is available at

About SERVE 6.8

SERVE 6.8 is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization that creates significant and sustainable change in northern Colorado by expanding and enhancing the impact of community and faith based organizations and by maximizing the full potential of compassion-driven organizations. More information is available at

About Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colo., Bohemian Foundation works to empower citizens and impact communities through its responsive grant making programs and special initiatives. More information is available at

About Homeless Gear

Homeless Gear operates a family of six programs that provides a continuum of services to individuals and families who are homeless: supplies that help them survive in the short-term, connections to resources in the interim and links to employment, housing and self-sufficiency in the long-term.

About Catholic Charities

Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Denver has been serving the Northern Colorado community since 1983. We serve thousands of people each year in three areas: Shelter Services, Senior Services and Emergency Services. Catholic Charities is open to, and serves, all people. We collaborate with Catholic parishes and local churches, local businesses, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, medical facilities and educational institutions. Our shelters provide short- and long-term housing and supportive services with the objective of helping people become self-reliant.

About Neighbor to Neighbor

Neighbor to Neighbor (N2N) is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization serving as a primary housing resource for Larimer County residents since 1970, with services from homelessness to homeownership. N2N has operated its Fort Collins Renter Program at the Murphy Center since 2009. N2N’s Renter Program offers the following services: Emergency Rent Assistance, First Month’s Rent Assistance and Housing Search Assistance. N2N impacts over 5,000 individuals each year.

About SummitStone Health Partners

SummitStone Health Partners is a private non-profit whose mission is to provide unsurpassed behavioral health prevention, intervention and treatment services in Larimer County. With 23 locations throughout Larimer County, SummitStone Health Partners provides mental health and substance abuse treatment that center on improving the lives of people served by building healthier individuals and families. Over 50 products and services allow SummitStone Health Partners to meet the individualized needs of consumers and their families through evidence-based and consumer-focused care. For more information, please visit


Larimer County Youth Kick Off Year of Giving Oct. 2

More than 225 Larimer County middle and high school students and 30 local nonprofits will gather on Oct. 2 to kick off their participation in Give Next, a year-long program designed to teach students about giving and the important roles nonprofits play in our community.

The Oct. 2 Give Next event, called Philanthropy Day, will include speakers, a nonprofit fair, a nonprofit career panel and workshops led by nonprofit staff. The event will provide students with information about community issues and nonprofits, and about ways they can contribute to their community. After Philanthropy Day, participating students launch into a year-long curriculum through Give Next.

Give Next is a school-based youth philanthropy program that offers middle and high school students experience with the power of teamwork, the impact they can have on their community and the rewards of giving. Through the program, local businesses, foundations and individuals become classroom donors by providing each participating school in the Poudre and Thompson Valley School Districts with $5,000 to award to Larimer County nonprofits. With the financial support of these donors, students design and manage their own grantmaking programs. Students work together to identify community needs, choose a focus area, create their own mission statement, research nonprofits, volunteer, conduct site visits, review grant applications and make funding decisions. Students also can create and manage their own fundraising campaigns to add to the original $5,000. At the end of the school year, students award grants to selected nonprofits.

Give Next is a partnership of community volunteers and organizations that include Bohemian Foundation, the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, Poudre School District, Thompson School District and the Give Next Advisory Committee. To learn more about Give Next, visit

Note to editors: Reporters are welcome to attend Philanthropy Day. To attend, please call June Greist at 970-481-4361. The event will run 9:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Oct. 2 at Timberline Church, 2908 S. Timberline Road, Fort Collins.


Bohemian Foundation Grant Supports New Stage in Old Town Square

The Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority today announced that Bohemian Foundation provided a $200,000 grant to support a new entertainment stage in the city’s Old Town Square.

“The Downtown Development Authority Board is pleased to accept the generous Bohemian Foundation grant on behalf of the Old Town Square renovation project,” said Matt Robenalt, Executive Director of the Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority. “The Old Town Square renovations have included the installation of new amenities our community will enjoy for another 30-50 years, and the stage is an integral part of the Old Town Square experience. Thanks to Bohemian’s grant, we’re able to build a multi-use stage that will feature quality sound, lighting and electrical equipment.”

The new stage is part of a broader renovation project that is slated for completion in October. The stage, which anchors the north side of the Old Town Square plaza, replaces a smaller stage constructed in 1984. The stage design evolved as a result of collaborative input from many long-time Old Town Square users, including event producers, performers, production technicians and audience members. The new stage will accommodate a broad variety of performance styles and event sizes. When not in use for performances, the stage will be available as a casual seating area for downtown visitors. Construction crews installed a steel canopy over the stage in late August; the remaining equipment will be installed over the next several weeks.

“Old Town Square is at the heart of downtown Fort Collins,” said Kristen Karabensh of Bohemian Foundation. “The Downtown Development Authority has done a fantastic job bringing the community’s vision for the area to fruition. Bohemian Foundation is proud to be able to contribute to such a vital project and we’re looking forward to all of the new and creative ways the community will embrace the space.”

Bohemian Foundation’s Music Programs produces many free community concerts that are held in Old Town Square. These concerts are among the dozens of special events and programs Old Town Square hosts each year.

The Old Town Square renovation project is in its last six weeks of construction. Details regarding a reopening celebration will be announced by mid September.

About the Old Town Square Renovation Project

As part of the vibrant Downtown experience, the public plaza portion of Old Town Square has been heavily used over the last 30 years. The DDA and its project staff are committed to creating a high-quality, public gathering space that accommodates a variety of activities now and into the future. Construction is underway and will be complete this fall.

About Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority

The mission of the Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority is to build public and private partnerships that advance economic, cultural and social growth in the Fort Collins central business district.

About Bohemian Foundation

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colo., Bohemian Foundation works to empower citizens and impact communities through its strategic grant making programs and special initiatives.


Tom Scharf Selected as Bohemian Foundation Music Programs Director

Bohemian Foundation today announced it has selected Tom Scharf, former CEO of Denver non-profit Swallow Hill Music, to lead Bohemian Foundation’s Music Programs.

Scharf will start his new position at Bohemian Foundation Aug. 31, succeeding current music programs director, Kristen Karabensh.

"Tom Scharf is a professional with outstanding credentials and non-profit experience," Bohemian Foundation Executive Director Cheryl Zimlich said. "We look forward to his leadership for the next phase of Music Programs’ development. This is an exciting new hire for our organization."

Scharf served in the top role at Swallow Hill from 2007-2014. Under his direction, the nonprofit more than doubled its patronage, more than quadrupled its top-line revenues, built key strategic partnerships and dramatically increased its local and national profile. Swallow Hill is a 36-year-old organization that runs music education programs and produces music performances in the Denver area, including concerts at its own venues, the Denver Botanic Gardens and the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities.

“Bohemian Foundation is an organization aligned with my values,” said Scharf. “I truly believe that music can build community, and the foundation’s work is helping to do just that. I’m looking forward to advancing Music Programs initiatives, to becoming a part of the Fort Collins community and to being immersed in the burgeoning local music scene.”

Karabensh, who has served Bohemian Foundation for the past four years, will remain with the foundation through September, then will relocate out-of-state with her family. Zimlich credited Karabensh for positioning the foundation’s Music Programs for growth and for developing an excellent staff.

Bohemian Foundation is a private family foundation established in 2001. Based in Fort Collins, Colo., Bohemian Foundation works to empower citizens and impact communities through its responsive grant making programs and special initiatives. Visit for information about the foundation’s work.


Bohemian Foundation Shares Updated Goals

Bohemian Foundation today announced the broadened scope of its work, its refreshed Community Programs goals and the naming of an executive director. This week the foundation also will launch a new website to provide clear and current information about its work locally, nationally and globally.

Established in 2001 by Fort Collins philanthropist Pat Stryker, the foundation has grown and developed over the past 14 years. Bohemian Foundation launched with a single local grantmaking program—the Pharos Fund. Since then, a larger Community Programs area has formed alongside the Pharos Fund. A Music Programs area was developed next, with the goal of building community through music.

The foundation today announced two additional program areas that have grown beyond their initial stages to become well-established grantmaking areas for the foundation. The foundation’s Civic Programs area, which started on a small scale in 2004, supports organizations working nationally or within Colorado to strengthen democracy. The foundation’s Global Programs area, which began as a pilot in 2010, makes grants to organizations working around the world to address challenges related to public health, poverty and the environment.

Today the foundation also announced refreshed goals in its Community Programs area. The updated goals represent the ideals that have shaped the foundation’s work since its start. These goals are: encouraging and enabling youth to thrive; empowering individuals and families on the path toward economic stability; and strengthening our vibrant community.

Bohemian Foundation’s largest local grantmaking program, the Pharos Fund, aligns with the broader Community Programs goals, making funding from the foundation accessible to a wider range of eligible organizations. Grant applicants will use a new, online application for the Pharos Fund, and will have access to workshops and guidance from foundation staff during the application process.

Leading Bohemian Foundation is Cheryl Zimlich, who was recently named executive director, a role she has filled on an interim basis for the past few years. Zimlich also is a member of the Bohemian Foundation Board, a respected community leader, and a 20-year volunteer in the education and nonprofit sectors. In addition to her service at Bohemian Foundation, Zimlich has held board and leadership positions in more than a dozen local and national organizations.

Also reflecting Bohemian Foundation’s refreshed focus is a newly launched graphic identity and website at The foundation’s new graphic identity and web presence aim to provide easily accessible information about the breadth of Bohemian Foundation’s work in all four of its program areas.