Eunice Boynton’s world unraveled after her husband of 22 years died of cancer in 2005. She tried to look for work despite her fragile mental state, but found none. She sold illegal drugs to survive. Unable to get an apartment because of poor credit, she lived in hotels. When the fear of going to jail drove her out of the drug trade, she sold her possessions to pay the rent … until there was nothing left to sell. In 2008 she moved to Los Angeles, homeless and looking for a fresh start.
Detroit's first festival of light and art transformed the city’s Midtown district into exhibition space for two evenings Oct. 5 and 6. Despite a rainy opening night, thousands took in Dlectricity, an event featuring 35 projects by local and international artists. Inspired by light festivals in Paris and New York, Dlectricity included:
Thousands of community college transfer students will get degrees through ‘Credit When It’s Due’ initiative
More than a dozen states will participate in an initiative to help students who have transferred from community colleges to four-year institutions complete their associate degrees. In some states, 70 to 90 percent of students make the move to four-year colleges and universities before earning two-year degrees. The concept of “reverse transfer” will give them a marketable credential using credits earned at community colleges and then at four-year institutions.
The Kresge Foundation has awarded two-year grants to 66 arts and cultural organizations in the Detroit metropolitan area. The grants totaling $4.2 million were made by Kresge’s Detroit Program, which invests in efforts to create long-term economic opportunity that advances social equity, promotes cultural expression, and re-establishes the city as the center of a vibrant region. A little more than half the funding will support the activities of 55 small and medium-sized arts and cultural organizations. The balance will support 11 large institutions.
Kresge among funders giving community farm and food advocates a chance to work with national organizations
The Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation has selected four community-based activists from Louisiana, Michigan, New Jersey and Texas as the foundation’s first “Everybody at the Table for Health” fellows.
Cindy Moe isn’t a counselor. But as vice president of human resources at Light Corporation, a specialty lighting company in Grand Haven, Mich., Moe was often the one employees turned to with their personal struggles. She would listen, brainstorm with them, call the appropriate agencies with them from her office. It was time consuming, inefficient and at times awkward. Did it help? She hoped so. Then, her company joined a unique program that puts public-assistance experts and employees under the same roof, to help low-income workers who need them.
The Kresge Foundation’s Education Program has simplified its structure so that domestic grantmaking and investing now fall under one of two focus areas: Pathways to and through college. Strengthening institutions. The Education Program had previously organized the portfolio around three focus areas. The revision does not reflect any change in grantmaking strategy. “We’ll continue to support the same kind of activities that are in our portfolio today,” says Bill Moses, the Education Program director.
Constructing a green building was only the first step. Committed to reducing energy consumption and promoting renewable power, The Kresge Foundation had the Center for the Built Environment at the University of California at Berkeley evaluate the performance of its metropolitan Detroit office building, and continues to work on ways to improve energy efficiency.
Four community health centers and one primary-care association will receive awards in recognition of their innovative approaches to primary care delivery and other initiatives that promote health and wellness in low-income communities. The $20,000 awards are part of a National Summit on Community Health Center Lending and Innovation, a two-day event taking place in Metropolitan Detroit next month.
Citizen volunteers’ work monitoring air quality leads to recommendations for reducing harmful emissions
A new report makes the case that citizen volunteers can play a role in monitoring air quality and working to mitigate harmful air emissions. The report, by TriCounty Watchdogs and Global Community Monitor, focused on emissions from diesel-truck traffic. Titled “EXHAUST-ed! Community Exposure to Diesel Air Pollution in California’s Transportation Corridor,” the report details a year-long project in Lebec, Calif., and provides recommendations to reduce emissions.
This week we introduce a new term to talk about one of our Health Program focus areas: Community Health Partnerships. The phrase was coined after extensive discussions about what Health Program staff members hope to achieve and how they expect to reach those goals. “In using the term ‘community health partnerships’ we’ve put the emphasis on health, rather than on health care or sickness,” says David Fukuzawa, who leads Kresge’s Health Program.
PHILADELPHIA – The nation’s largest awards program for responsible finance, the Wells Fargo NEXT Awards for Opportunity Finance, has announced three finalists for the $8.25 million NEXT Opportunity Award. The finalists plan to finance housing and community facilities in economically distressed Nevada, to create supportive housing for people with exceptional needs, or to expand access to affordable primary health care. The $8.25 million award will be divided between two or among all three finalists.
The Kresge Foundation has joined the wave of organizations renovating and re-using office, retail and other space in Detroit. The national philanthropy recently completed the renovation of a 2,500-square-foot office in the city’s Woodward Garden Block. The office space gives Kresge’s Detroit Program a home base close to its work and a convenient space for meeting with grantees and other partners.
The Post-9/11 GI Bill provides more than 2 million eligible veterans with full tuition and fees at public universities, plus a housing stipend, money for books and supplies and a one-time relocation allowance. But many veterans have left that money on the table – not because they don’t value education, but because help can be scarce when life gets in the way.
Kresge awards $1.2 million to Indiana and Wisconsin primary health care associations to strengthen community health centers
The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act will mean huge changes, including increased demand, for health centers serving the nation’s most vulnerable populations. To help federally funded community health centers adapt to a rapidly changing environment, The Kresge Foundation is investing more than $1.2 million in a comprehensive technical assistance program in Indiana and Wisconsin that could be replicated in other states. More than 20 million Americans receive primary care through community health centers.
Community health centers and primary-care associations have until next week to apply for innovation awards for projects that highlight health center successes in: Advancing innovations in the delivery of primary care. Addressing the social determinants of health. And/or building healthy communities. Four awards of up to $25,000 each will be made as part of a National Summit on Community Health Center Lending and Innovation.
Our offices are closed today, Friday, July 6, due to a power failure. The utility company expects service to be restored Sunday. Some staff members are working from other locations, but the switchboard is not in operation and most inquiries will not be received until Monday. We're sorry about any inconvenience.
Applications and scholarships are now available for educational programs that give communities the opportunity to assess and respond to climate-related risks that may be threatening their infrastructure, budgets and resident well-being.
Two dozen Metropolitan Detroit literary and performing artists have been awarded Kresge Artist Fellowships for 2012. Each of the 24 fellowships includes an unrestricted prize of $25,000, rewarding creative vision and commitment to excellence within a wide range of artistic disciplines. The fellowships represent The Kresge Foundation’s desire to advance the artistic careers of Detroit artists living and working in its hometown, as well as elevate the profile of the area’s artistic community.
The development of light-rail transit systems in U.S. cities represents a positive step toward reducing urban sprawl and traffic congestion and revitalizing inner-city neighborhoods. A recent research report by PolicyLink finds light rail also generates new jobs for residents and creates compact, walkable communities centered around transportation.