Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Cleveland Foundation announces $17.9 million in grants

Classes are done, and I think I am almost fully recovered. While I play catch up on some of my Planning Commission reports (which still may take a week or so) I will post other newsworthy information that has not been reported (or I missed it) anywhere else.


Cleveland Foundation announces $17.9 million in grants

Arts, education, economic development among areas to benefit from awards

CLEVELAND, December 18, 2006 – The board of directors of The Cleveland Foundation today authorized $17.9 million in grants at its quarterly meeting, addressing some of Greater Cleveland's most pressing needs. Programs and initiatives receiving funding this quarter included:

Arts and Culture
The board authorized a $2 million grant to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum to support the building of a permanent library and archive. As part of its educational mission, the museum aims to become the premier international source for research on the discipline of rock and roll music. The Foundation believes that a library and archive are essential for the Rock Hall to achieve that goal.

Economic Development
The board authorized a grant of $1 million toward construction of a new building to house the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Cleveland. The new structure would serve as the signature building for the proposed University Arts and Retail District at the intersection of Euclid Avenue and Mayfield Road, which the Foundation has supported as part of its Greater University Circle Initiative. The district will include retail stores, condominiums and apartments, and is expected to stimulate investment and development in surrounding areas, while also serving students, faculty and staff of nearby Case Western Reserve University.

The Presidents' Council Foundation was also a recipient of a Cleveland Foundation grant in the amount of $82,500. The grant continues Foundation support of the Emerging Entrepreneurs program for African-American entrepreneurs in Greater Cleveland. The program offers monthly educational programs in such areas as leadership, marketing, finance and organization, as well as business networking events and in-depth discussions with local CEOs.

The Literacy Cooperative of Greater Cleveland received $250,000 for ongoing operating support. The Cooperative is working to develop a literacy outreach system for Greater Cleveland, coordinating the region's many disparate literacy services and training providers.

The board voted to continue its support of the First Ring Leadership Academy with a $150,000 grant. The program provides leadership development training to teachers, supervisors, principals and assistant principals from 13 inner-ring suburban school districts around Cleveland.

The Foundation's support for education also extended to the Institute for Student Achievement (ISA), which received a grant of $113,256. The ISA, in collaboration with Columbia University's National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools and Teaching, is charged with identifying Cleveland schools that are enjoying measurable success in educating students at risk for academic failure. The project will pinpoint, describe and share best practices from these schools, which might include public, private, charter or parochial institutions.

The board supported the ShoreBank Enterprise Group (SEC) Cleveland with a $525,000 grant for the group's "Investing in Cleveland's East Side Neighborhoods" initiative. SEC helps Cleveland neighborhoods thrive through an investment fund, and a business incubator based in Glenville. In addition, an employee recruitment and support services program links neighborhood residents with new job opportunities generated by ShoreBank-supported businesses.

Early Childhood and Youth Development
The Child Care Resource Center of Cuyahoga County (also known as "Starting Point") has developed a reputation as one of Ohio's most effective child resource and referral agencies, prompting the board to award a $216,333 grant to fund its core services. The center links families to programs and services that meet their early childcare and educational needs while strengthening the community's ability to respond to them.

Nonprofit Community
Having recognized the need for greater business acumen and leadership training among faith-based and community organizations (FBCOs), The Cleveland Foundation earlier this year launched Project Access. The program is designed to bolster FBCOs in Cleveland and East Cleveland in management, advocacy and organizational effectiveness. Project Access, which recently "graduated" its first class of 45 organizations, received a grant of $545,000 to support its second year of operations. A portion of those funds will be directed to participating organizations for the purchase of equipment or services that expand their business and leadership capacity.

The board also authorized a $200,000 grant to the Cleveland Foundation Summer Internship Program, which gives college students and recent college graduates the opportunity to work in Cleveland-area nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies for an 11-week period. Interns learn about local nonprofits and public agencies and the important roles they play within the community.

Contact: Scott Tennant 216-615-7153