News & Events

Image 6 Big Moments in 2021

The last year proved to be more trying than any of us could have imagined. But while the challenges were extraordinary, even more extraordinary were the countless moments you, your neighbors, and our amazing Arlington organizations stepped up to make our community stronger.

Thanks to your continued support, these moments (and many others) have primed 2022 to be a year of collaborative, compassionate, community-building work. We are so grateful for you, and we can’t wait to see what we’ll accomplish together in the coming year and beyond.

Over $100,000 raised for the Nonprofit Wish Catalog

over 100k raised for wish catalog

What a way to end the year! After almost 2 years into the pandemic, 2021’s holiday season of giving asked us all to dig a little deeper. And you certainly weren’t afraid to rise to the occasion.

By raising over $100,000, the Wish Catalog shows our local nonprofits that we continue to be here for them because they are always here for us and our most vulnerable neighbors, even in the most challenging of times.

“We were so honored to have been part of the Wish Catalog. To know that we are supported in the work we do for our low income residents is meaningful beyond measure.” – Marta Hill Gray, Culpepper Gardens

Over $600,000 in college scholarships awarded to Arlington high school students


“Receiving this scholarship meant a lot to me because it felt like my hometown was supporting me in my college career.” – Anna Tramposch

Arlington Community Foundation has a well-established Annual Scholarship Program that in 2021 awarded over $600,000 in college scholarships to 103 new students, with an additional 85 scholarships being renewed for returning college students.

Generous individuals, families, companies, and organizations fund the scholarships which have their own unique eligibility criteria. In the past decade, with the help of these generous funders, Arlington Community Foundation has awarded more than $5 million to Arlington students attending college.

The scholarships application period for 2022-2023 is open right now! Learn more, apply, and share here.

Over 100 families enrolled in
Arlington’s Guarantee

Arlington's Guarantee

Launched in 2021 with the support of many generous funders, Arlington’s Guarantee is a new guaranteed income pilot that aims to provide cash relief of $500 to 200 low income working families in Arlington every month for 18 months.

Created in partnership with Arlington County Department of Human Services, this new initiative equips families with funds that can be used for whatever is needed most in real time– paying off debt, pursuing education or employment goals, college savings for kids, or allowing parents more time with their children and less time away from home in a second job.

The first 110 participants have already been enrolled in the pilot, with many saying it has given them hope after feeling “incredibly hopeless” for months or even years. One participant, a single mother who works full time, says this assistance will give her the much needed breathing room to finish her GED and attend nursing school.

21 Arlington nonprofits featured in a pandemic response report

Safety Net Nonprofits

The 2021 Safety Net Arlington report highlights the experiences of 21 Arlington nonprofits who partnered closely and convened frequently to address the historic challenges of 2020-2021.

Since the start of the pandemic, these safety net organizations have risen to meet innumerable challenges with the single purpose of ensuring people are safe and supported. After the report was released, the report author and leaders from several of these organizations gathered for a virtual panel discussion about their experiences and insights.

“I gained a lot of strength from these [Safety Net] meetings…I was able to receive ground-level, reliable information from nonprofits and take it directly to the County Board and Manager and formulate requests for assistance.”- Anita Friedman, Arlington Department of Human Services Director

Arlington trailblazers celebrated at annual Spirit of Community Awards

Spirit of Community

“I hope that the lives of all three honorees will inspire you to bold action in our community today and for generations to come.” – Hon. William T. Newman, Jr., Founder & President Emeritus of Arlington Community Foundation

On November 18, 2021, the Arlington community came together to celebrate individuals, groups, and businesses who make Arlington truly special.

The year 2021 marks three decades of service for Arlington Community Foundation. To celebrate this milestone, the annual Spirit of Community Awards recognized three individuals for their selfless commitment to our community over those past three decades… and then some.

In addition to recognizing these individuals, 2021’s Spirit of Community highlighted the inspiring and innovative work of young people and business leaders in our community. You can find the full event recording as well as the individual honoree and highlight videos on this page.

Six local STEM teachers “emboldened” by summer Fellowships

school garden

The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Workforce Development Teacher Fellowship provides Arlington Public Schools high school, middle school, and elementary school teachers with opportunities to learn about work place needs in STEM-related fields and for them to use the experience to enhance student learning to match workplace expectations in a selected industry. STEM Fellows participate in a three-week summer fellowship, receiving up to $4,000 stipend upon completion.

In 2021, one STEM Fellow designed a way to make STEM career pathways more accessible for students (learn more on this podcast); another built geographic information systems (GIS) software and taught his students how to use it to monitor cicadas (watch his full video report); and another developed K-12 curriculum for building school gardens… just to name a few!

“If there’s one word to describe the experience, it’s emboldening. It’s the type of experience that has spurred me to more action, and to better action.” – Andrew Bridges, 2021 STEM Fellow

Don’t miss a moment in 2022. Connect with us: