We want YOU to know about Project FOCUS!

Project FOCUS is the “Human Care” agency of Ruritan.  Our mission is to show compassion to people suffering from medical emergencies, disasters, etc.  We respond to needs by working with local Ruritan clubs to assist communities suffering from the effects of natural disasters such as floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, fires, and earthquakes.  Our goal is to assist local Ruritan clubs by working with individuals who need our help.

To give you a complete picture of who Project FOCUS is and what Project FOCUS does, we have developed the following Q&A that you can use to share this new and exciting opportunity to assist our local communities during times of stress and need.

What is Project FOCUS?  Project FOCUS is a 501(c)(3) program dedicated to funding our local communities in times of stress. 

Who oversees Project FOCUS?  The Ruritan National Board of Directors has a committee that reviews grant requests and commits dollars to where they are needed.  They are also charged with developing ways to raise funds for the program.

Who are the current members of Project FOCUS, and how long do they serve?  Project FOCUS committee members serve one-year terms as voted on by the current National Board of Directors.  Our current board members are:

  • President: George Brothers
  • Vice President: Roger Davis
  • Secretary: Donna Jo Poulton
  • Treasurer: Cassandra Flanagan
  • Director: Lynn Fillers
  • Ruritan National Support: Kory Wirt

Who can apply for assistance through Project FOCUS?  Any club or district can apply for grant monies by completing and submitting a grant application form found HERE.

Where does the money come from?  Funding for Project FOCUS comes from donations from individuals, clubs, districts, and businesses.  Donations to FOCUS may potentially be tax deductible. Send your donations to Ruritan National and make your check payable to Project FOCUS.

What is the application process?  Here is an approximate timeline for applications submitted to Project FOCUS:

  • A local club or district completes an application for assistance within their area. Download the application HERE.
  • The National Office receives the application via email, the USPS (may take up to 1 week or longer depending on the mail service), or fax to the National Office. When submitting your application, please be sure to submit your approved club or district minutes indicating the approved motion for assistance* If submitting by email- please include the Zone Governor, District Governor, and National Representative for your district.
  • The National Office will acknowledge receipt of the grant request to the designated point of contact, the Zone Governor, the District Governor, and the National Representative assigned to that district. The distribution timeline will begin with this email.
  • Application is shared with the current committee and reviewed for accuracy and scope of request- any requests that are incomplete or require additional information will be reviewed with the designated point of contact of the grant request or returned for clarification. (1 week)
  • The current committee votes on completed grant requests, and a grant amount is assigned, or the application is returned to the designated point of contact with an explanation for the application being turned down. The Grant Response Notification will also be emailed to the Zone Governor, District Governor, and National Representative. (2 days)
  • Grant amounts are distributed and sent to the designated point of contact. (2 days)
  • The designated point of contact is responsible for completing a Grant Completion Form (download that HERE) indicating how the grant was (or is being) used to meet the needs of the local community during their time of need (may take up to 1 month after the funds are distributed to the designated point of contact).  If the distribution of funds exceeds the one-month timeline, a progress report shall be submitted and updated monthly until the distribution is complete. Download the progress report HERE.

How much money can be given for a grant application?  The grant amount would be based on the need and the number of grants being considered at that time, subject to available funds within Project FOCUS not exceeding $10,000 per event request.

When should we request a grant?  The club and/or district should begin the grant process as soon as a need has been recognized and a reasonable estimate of a grant amount has been determined.

How can my club and club members, as well as our district, get involved?  There are many ways to get involved with Project FOCUS:

  • Follow us on social media- Ruritan National Project FOCUS.
  • Encourage your club to make a planned annual gift to Project FOCUS.
  • Have club members check with their employers to see if they offer matching gift programs.
  • Be a boots-on-the-ground volunteer in your area- YOU ARE THE HANDS, FEET, and HEART of RURITAN!