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  • Writer's pictureCatalina Langen

Wellbeing Microgrant Program Origin Story

The Wellbeing Microgrant program is a community-driven experience. It's about much more than a $500 grant.

Origins in City Hall

Wellbeing Microgrants launched in 2018 with a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Culture of Health Prize. They were housed in the City of Santa Monica's Office of Civic Wellbeing.

They were intended as a way of engaging residents to take action for community wellbeing on their own terms. The Office of Civic Wellbeing provided resources and connections within city government to support the Microgrant leaders in bringing their projects to life.

Transition to the Human Relations Council

The Santa Monica Bay Human Relations Council (HRC) is the nonprofit fiscal receiver and supportive partner of the Wellbeing Microgrants.

When the Office of Civic Wellbeing was closed in 2020, staff from that team spun off into Civic Wellbeing Partners (CWP), a nongovernmental organization stewarding wellbeing in the Santa Monica area . The CWP team brought the Microgrants to the HRC and continue to operate the program with a small, part-time team.

Critical Partnerships & Support

We could not have continued the Wellbeing Microgrant Program and its flywheel benefits to community without the gracious support and funding from our key funding partners: Cedars-Sinai, the Santa Monica Rotary Club, United Way of Greater LA, Santa Monica Firefighters Fund, generous individual donors, and more.

We also have a number of connections and partnerships with local institutions who collaborate with us to make the Wellbeing Microgrant program great!

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