Manaus Valley Project

The Manaus Fund believes that community organizing is the best way to engage all people in a community to create change and achieve social justice.  We have partnered with the West/ Southwest Industrial Areas Foundation to learn from their decades of work in 29 states and build our region’s capacity for broad-based community organizing. The result is the Manaus Valley Project, which is engaging institutions from Rifle to Aspen and to Vail in building a broad-based organization in the region. Learn more at:



Valley Settlement

Initiated in 2011 with a $1.2 million grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Valley Settlement is a multi-generation program focused on school readiness, elementary school achievement, economic stability and community engagement for families living within the Roaring Fork School District. Valley Settlement focus is those families who are living in poverty and who are not successfully settled or attached to the community in which they live. Through partnerships with funders, local nonprofits, and schools, Valley Settlement works to support and empower these families. The Manaus Fund launched Valley Settlement as a separate nonprofit near the end of 2016. Learn more at:

Third Street Center

The Manaus Fund invested $530,000 in the pre-development phase of this community project. The Third Street Center is a joint effort between the Town of Carbondale, SCoR and the Roaring Fork Community Development Corporation (CDC) to renovate the old Carbondale Elementary School into a green facility that maintains affordable space for community and regional nonprofit and forprofit organizations.
Learn more at:


Basalt Community Campus

The Basalt Community Campus is a cooperative effort between the Roaring Fork Community Development Corporation and the Town of Basalt to redevelop the Pan and Fork Mobile Home Park into a River Park and a mix of hotel, commercial, residential and nonprofit uses. The Manaus Fund was the initial lender to help purchase the property.


Lift Up

In 2005 The Manaus Fund funded Lift Up with a $25,000 grant and a $75,000 loan to purchase property in Rifle to expand its food bank, thrift shop, and administrative facilities. In 2009 The Manaus Fund purchased a building in Parachute and is leasing it to Lift Up as a site in which to operate an additional thrift shop and regional clothing recycling center. Lift Up will raise money over the next three years to purchase the building from The Manaus Fund.



(Formerly Computers for Kids) received $100,000 to open their Partnering for Success Center in Carbondale. The Partnering for Success Center is an authentic learning center and a place where adults learn from youth and youth learn from adults while providing students, adults and businesses with technology, technology training, tools and meeting spaces to work, play, produce and collaborate.


Community Health Initiatives: Red Mountain Adolescent & Family Center

communtiy health Received $30,000 to fulfill staffing needs of its youth treatment program.
The center is dedicated to helping youth and their families recover from the destructive effects of alcohol and substance abuse. Red Mountain treats and educates individuals and families who have been affected by alcohol and other drug abuse.


Woody Creek Community Center (WC3)

Having served the community of Woody Creek for years, George and Patti Stranahan gifted the Woody Creek Community Center to The Manaus Fund to ensure that it would remain a place to celebrate and serve the community of Woody Creek. The WC3 has undergone a full renovation and rejuvenation and has re-opened its doors to the community.


Alpine Legal Services

alpine legal

Received $40,000 enabling them to hire a bilingual staff person to reach out to the valley's Spanish-speaking communities. The intention is to help Latinos draft pleadings so that they may have greater access to justice and civil redress in the court system.


Aspen Public Radio

Aspen Public Radio

Received a total of $120,000 over three years to expand local news coverage in the Lower Roaring Fork and Colorado River valleys through adding a full-time bilingual broadcast news reporter. Aspen Public Radio’s goal is to expand it membership and underwriting base in these areas. A portion of the $120,000 is being repaid through a percentage of incremental revenue from the success of the venture.


Aspen Valley Ski & Snowboard School (AVSC)

Aspen Public Radio

Received $100,000 to develop a clothing business capitalizing on AVSC’s brand awareness in the Valley. Proceeds from the enterprise will be used to fund scholarships for Latino children as well as to fund AVSC programs, creating capacity for bilingual instructors and participants in winter sports.



Thrift Shop of Aspen

Aspen Public Radio

Received $150,000 that will be regenerated from Thrift Shop sales and re-invested in suggested Manaus Fund projects and also a $50,000 matching grant allowing them to complete the construction of their new building in Aspen. The Aspen Thrift Shop was formed in 1949 and supports more than 70 nonprofit organizations annually through their grants program and gives out over $35,000 in college scholarships to local high school students.


People's Press

Aspen Public Radio

Manaus Fund made a $7,500 loan to People's Press to publish the Benton Book. Partial proceeds from the sale of this book will go towards repaying this loan.