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A new Bend group has set its sights on kickstarting small projects that benefit the community. "Awesome Bend" is a new branch of an international organization, the Awesome Foundation.


Bend co-founder Pam Stevenson says the local branch will be opening up this month, with the hopes of providing financial support for ideas that help the community.


"What's unique about the awesome concept is that it's social entrepreneurship, really," Stevenson says. "The projects are meant to better our community to do social good, so they're not about for-profit ventures."


After starting, they plan to give out $1,000 grants every three months for innovative ideas fitting needs that aren't addressed quite as often.


"I know that some people are working on developing an avalanche forecasting center for Central Oregon, which I think would be a useful thing for this community," Stevenson says. 


The chapter is hosting a kickoff event Wednesday, February 18th at Bad Wolf Bakery, to ask potential donors for micro loans. Stevenson believes they'll get more than the 50 supporters they had originally anticipated. 


After gaining initial support, Awesome Bend expects to host "Pitch Nights" every three months to decide on what new projects to support. 


"I've been on the boards of various things like the Humane Society," Stevenson says. "But this is to support innovative ideas outside the box of the standard already established."

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