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Profile for Grant Award Recipient: Olympic Medical Center Cancer Center

Olympic Medical Center Foundation was awarded a $25,000 Community Development grant
for expansion of the Cancer Care Center in Sequim.

Profile:  Olympic Medical Center Cancer Center by Karen McCormick

Few things are more terrifying than receiving a diagnosis of cancer. Beating the disease is one thing, but patients and their families must also face the daunting logistics involved with treatment and recovery. For those living in the rural communities of the North Olympic Peninsula, this often involves grueling trips to Seattle-area hospitals, often on a daily or weekly basis, when resources are already stretched to their limits.

Phil & Linda Walker

Olympic Medical Center opened its Cancer Center in Sequim in 2002, and by 2007 was treating 2,700 patients annually. Nine years later that number had grown to 8,100 patients – an increase of 157%. “We are unbelievably lucky, in a community this size, to have a world-class outpatient cancer center here,” said Phil Walker, board member of the Olympic Medical Center Foundation and avid supporter of the OMC Cancer Center expansion project. Although no patient is turned away, the Center is now at its maximum capacity.


OMC’s planned expansion of the Sequim Cancer Care Center will increase clinical exam space, expand its pharmacy, offer more infusion and chair space, and provide room for communication and educational efforts. This will increase the Center’s capacity by fifty percent, ensuring that the healthcare needs of our growing population will be met. Walker highlights another benefit of the Center’s expansion: “We will now be able to attract and retain the finest medical professionals, including medical and radiation oncologists, RNs and nurse practitioners, and medical assistant staff. Most important, however, is that patients will continue to benefit from the exceptional quality of care they receive, right here at home.”

Kay C. Hobbs and patient

Olympic Medical Center Foundation committed to raising $1 million for the expansion project, and by December 2018 it had exceeded that target. In 2018, First Federal Community Foundation, together with First Federal Bank, gave a combined leadership gift of $150,000 toward the OMC Cancer Center expansion project – an investment that will help bring hope and comfort to recovering cancer patients at a time when they need it the most.

Profile of Grant Award Recipient: Bainbridge Island Child Care Centers

Bainbridge Island Child Care Centers were awarded $25,000 Community Development grant in 2018 to develop a new care facility for school-age children.

Profile: Bainbridge Island Child Care Centers by Karen McCormick

For multiple generations of Bainbridge Island residents, the Bainbridge Island Child Care Centers (BICC) represent everything good about a community.  Founded over forty years ago, the non-profit organization serves the community and its families by providing affordable, accessible programs for pre-school and school-age children where fun and learning are promoted in a creative, nurturing and safe environment.

Faced with the need to find a new location, BICCC launched the Little Red Schoolhouse Campaign to raise funds for renovations to its new 2-1/2 acre campus, providing a permanent home for its school-age programs. The campaign resonated with people like Lily Karsten, whose father brought her to the same pre-school to which Lily now brings her own children.

John Fossett, whose children also attended BICCC, now serves as a trustee for the nonprofit. “At BICCC, my daughter felt loved and included and found comfort that would last her well into young adulthood,” said Fossett. “She still has the friends she made at BICCC.”

First Federal Community Foundation’s $25,000 community development grant award in 2018 to BICCC helped establish a permanent home for BICCC’s school-age programs, ensuring that this vital and beloved agency will continue serving Bainbridge Island families well into the future.


Lily Karsten and Barb Brewis – Three generations at BICCC

“I wanted my daughter to have the same creative and fun experience that I had at BICCC’s Children’s Center.” — Lily Karsten, Parent

Lily Karsten and her daughter, Olivia, visit BICCC’s Children’s Center with Lily’s father, Porter Condon. In the late 1980s, Porter would bring Lily to the same preschool to which Lily brings Olivia today.

Lily Karsten and her mother, Barb Brewis (center) confer with lead BICCC teacher Anne Campbell about the upcoming enrollment of Lily’s younger daughter, Gemma. Anne was Lily’s own teacher when she was a Children’s Center student and mentored Lily when she later worked there as a caregiver.


John Fossett

John Fossett reminisces with Brigitte Wilson, the former teacher of his children, Ellen and Jacob. John, who believes BICCC contributed to his kids’ well-being as young adults, chose to serve as a trustee for the nonprofit.

“At BICCC, my daughter felt loved and included and found comfort that would last her well into young adulthood. She still has the friends she made at BICCC.” — John Fossett, Parent


**All photos by Brofsky Productions

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Jan Simon at 360-417-3112 or email

Celebrating Spring 2019 Grant Award Recipient: Scarlet Road

Staff of Scarlet Road, with staff of First Federal Community Foundation and First Federal Bank: Awarded $10,000 Community Support grant to purchase security equipment and make property improvements to enhance safety of clients and staff.  Scarlet Road was born out of the commitment to see a way out for women and children in the sex industry.  Scarlet Road set out to change social perspectives, help the community understand and serve victims of sexual exploitation, providing long-term support for women and children throughout the Kitsap and North Mason area.

Celebrating Spring 2019 Grant Award Recipient: Bainbridge Island Senior Center

Staff and board members of First Federal Community Foundation and First Federal Bank, with staff and board of the Bainbridge Island Senior Community Center: Awarded $10,000 Community Support grant for new Resource Navigator program.  The navigator program helps identify the needs of seniors and connect them to resources to address them, including transportation, home repairs, in-home and memory care, affordable housing and support groups.

First Federal Community Foundation Releases 2018 Annual Report

First Federal Community Foundation was funded in January 2015 with a generous gift of stock and cash valued at nearly $12 million from the parent company of First Federal Bank, when the bank was converted to a publicly traded company. With this gift, First Federal Bank made clear its commitment to continue its long tradition of supporting the communities it serves.

In that spirit, First Federal Community Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of life in the communities in which First Federal Bank maintains full service branches. We are committed to creating broad impact in our communities through gifts that benefit charitable services, affordable housing, economic development and community development projects.

Since our inception, First Federal Community Foundation has awarded $2,861,500 in grants to nonprofit, government and tribal agencies in Clallam, Jefferson, Kitsap and Whatcom Counties. Of that total amount, $785,000 was invested in our communities during the year 2018.

Click here to view the 2018 Annual Report.