Binc Launches Matching Grants Pilot Program

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On Monday, the Book Industry Charitable (Binc) Foundation announced the launch of a new Matching Grant Pilot Program aimed at harnessing the goodwill of the community to assist a bookseller in need. Binc will match funds raised by a bookstore (by any method it chooses) dollar-for-dollar up to a maximum of $2,000 to help a bookseller in need in situations not covered by Binc’s existing financial assistance programs.

To qualify for the foundation’s regular financial assistance grants, booksellers must be experiencing a financial emergency due to a qualifying event. The Matching Grant is meant to help when booksellers need assistance in a situation that does not match one of the existing qualifications.

To apply for a Matching Grant, the store owner, manager, or regional independent booksellers association (IBA) executive director must sign on as the sponsor. Situations covered by Matching Grants include emergency auto and home repairs, insurance premiums, and medical expenses.*

Binc outlined the following steps for bookstores that would like to become sponsors for a Matching Grant:

  1. Download the Matching Grant packet containing forms and instructions from the Binc website.
  2. The sponsor (store owner, store manager, or regional IBA Executive Director) signs and submits a Matching Grant Application.
  3. Binc submits the application to the Program Committee for evaluation.
  4. If approved, the sponsor oversees collection of funds at the store/community level on behalf of the bookseller.
  5. Once funds are raised (or the $2,000 mark is reached), the sponsor submits a Request for Funds Form (verified by the sponsor and one other bookstore representative), which reports the amount collected.
  6. A matching check is written by Binc. (Funds can be paid directly to the bookseller or to a third party, such as a doctor.)

As with other Binc financial assistance grants, Matching Grants are intended to assist with unexpected financial hardships. Matching Grants cannot be used for legal fees, college tuition, elective surgery, vacation travel, or celebratory events. Binc’s staff and Program Committee members will make the final determination regarding approved qualifying events.

The Matching Grant Pilot Program, which has a budget cap of $10,000 for 2014, will be evaluated by Binc at the end of the year to determine if it will become an ongoing program.

*Medical expenses may qualify for a direct assistance grant, so booksellers should contact Binc to discuss their particular case.