Freeport-McMoRan Foundation announces 2018 Greenlee County Community Investment Fund Grant recipients

Contributed Article

CLIFTON – Four local projects have been selected to receive a total of $300,000 in grants from the 2018 Greenlee County Community Investment Fund process at an awards ceremony held during the Greenlee County Chamber of Commerce Mixer at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 12 at the Blue Door Sanctuary.

Community Investment Funds (CIF) were established to give leaders in communities in the company’s operating areas the opportunity to direct funds from the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation to address local priority issues.

“We believe one of our key responsibilities is to assist communities in envisioning and planning for their own sustainable future when our mines are no longer viable,” said Tracy Bame, President, Freeport-McMoRan Foundation.

“Sustainable Development is a very long-term activity, so it’s critical we work with communities now and on an ongoing basis to create, identify and invest in the opportunities and projects that will diversify the local economy, create a stronger economic foundation for the future, and contribute to their lasting social well-being. Partnershipwith local government, civil society, nonprofit organizations and citizens is absolutely essential, and wecongratulate the organizations receiving 2018 grant awards,” Bame said.

Freeport McMoRan Morenci Operations

The Greenlee County CIF is administered by an investment committee comprised of community leaders selected by the Greenlee County Community Partnership Panel (CPP), a stakeholder engagement process that was established to foster open and ongoing dialog with the community and create opportunities for the company and the community to work together to develop thoughtful solutions that address community issues.

Since starting in 2011, the Greenlee County Community Investment Fund has invested more than $2.2 million in locally identified projects affecting positive change in the following community priority areas identified by CPP members:community and economic development, education and training, environment, and health and wellness.

The 2018 grant recipients are:

Duncan School District

Project: Agricultural Invasive Weed Management Land Lab – $100,000

An educational land lab will be established on property infested by Russian Knapweed, an invasive species that is harmful to agricultural production and the watershed. The lab will serve as a hands-on learning environment for Duncan Schools where students will participate in research-based learning. Additionally, students will work to identify best practices around invasive species management that will be shared with local stakeholders to minimize the spread of Russian Knapweed and prevent further agricultural and watershed impacts across the region.


Project: Teledentistry Software and Organizational Capacity Building – $50,000

ToothBUDDS provides preventative dental care to school-aged students across the region. Attributed to the lack of dental providers in the area, Greenlee County has the lowest percentage of children in Arizona who have had a dental check-up in the last year. Funds will allow ToothBUDDS to use teledentistry software to consult with dental providers when referring patients that require additional dental care. Funding also will be used for organizational capacity support, ensuring the long-term sustainability of this project.

Town of Clifton

Project: Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements – $100,000

This investment will enable the town of Clifton to begin the first steps towards rehabilitating its current wastewater treatment plant. These improvements will ensure that significant infrastructure is in place to supportexisting and future economic development for the residents of Clifton.

Local First Arizona

Project: Graham and Greenlee County Micro-Loan Fund – $50,000

In a community with limited access to small commercial loans, funds will be added to an existing micro-loan fund and available exclusively to businesses serving Greenlee County. The availability of small business loans removesbarriers to capital for both startups and developing businesses prepared to scale up.

For more information about Freeport-McMoRan community investments and programs go or contact Southeastern Arizona Community Development staff member EmilyMuteb at or (928) 865-6235.