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Kresge launches $1.5M Memphis grant initiative to support community-driven projects aimed at strengthening neighborhoods

General Foundation News

The Kresge Foundation announced today a new Memphis funding initiative aimed at strengthening neighborhoods and improving the quality of life for city residents. Kresge Innovative Projects: Memphis (KIP:M) will provide up to $1.5 million in grant funding to community-based organizations to support projects that reflect the vision and creativity of Memphians.

KIP:M is inspired by Kresge Innovative Projects: Detroit, or KIP:D, which since 2015 has supported more than 70 projects in Kresge’s hometown. KIP:D has awarded over $6.7 million to Detroit-based organizations for community-driven projects including renovating vacant buildings into community hubs, empowering residents to act on issues impacting their communities, modifying streets and sidewalks to increase walkability and using place-making to turn unused lots into creative green spaces.

“The KIP:M initiative reflects Kresge’s belief that resident-led innovation lies at the heart of civic renewal,” said Kresge President and CEO Rip Rapson. “By supporting resident projects that reflect community identity, energies, and aspirations, Kresge hopes to strengthen and accelerate the revitalization that is currently taking root in neighborhoods across the Memphis landscape.”

KIP:M builds on the foundation’s increasing commitment to Memphis and support for place-based efforts that spur equitable economic and community development. Since 2013, Kresge has committed an estimated $21 million to support nonprofit and government organizations in the city.

“As we’ve deepened our work in Memphis and focused on investments that expand opportunity, we’ve been inspired by residents’ eagerness to drive change and to make a real difference in their day-to-day neighborhood experience,” said Chantel Rush, senior program officer with Kresge’s American Cities Program. “KIP:M reflects our commitment to provide critical resources to seed community-driven transformations throughout Memphis.”

KIP:M grants can support both project planning and implementation activities. Planning grants of up to $35,000 and implementation grants of up to $150,000 are available to qualifying community-based organizations.

First-step applications, which consist of six basic questions, will be accepted through Kresge’s online FLUXX system through May 24 (Prospective applicants must register to apply by May 13.). Select applicants will be invited to share more detailed proposals in late June. Selected projects will be announced in Memphis in September. Recipients will have 24 months to complete grant activities.

To assist prospective KIP:M applicants develop their proposals, Kresge will host several information sessions – webinars and in-person sessions in Memphis. More details on how to participate and additional dates, times and locations will be posted in the coming days.

Update: Additional details about webinars, information sessions, and webinar recordings have been added. 

Webinar: Wednesday, May 1 –  11 – 12 PM EST. Register here.

Webinar: Thursday, May 2 –  6 – 7 PM EST. Register here.

Watch a recording of the KIP:M informational webinar

Information Session: Thursday, May 9, 1 – 3 PM CST. BLDG Memphis; 1680 Jackson Avenue. Register here.

Information Session: Thursday, May 9, 6- – 8 PM CST. Momentum Nonprofit Partners; 630 South Cooper Street. Register here.

Eligibility for KIP:M is limited to organizations that are: (1) located in Tennessee; (2) primarily serve the city of Memphis and (3) that have either 501 (c)(3) nonprofit status or are part of a college or university. Entities that do not have 501 (c)(3) designation may apply with a 501 (c)(3) as a fiscal sponsor. For-profit organizations are ineligible to apply. Please refer to application guidelines and our FAQ for more details.

Learn more about Kresge Innovative Projects: Memphis

Watch a short video on KIP:M

Read KIP:M application guidelines and FAQs in English

Read KIP:M application guidelines and FAQs in Spanish

Read guide to applying for KIP:M in Kresge’s online FLUXX system.

Go to the online FLUXX system

About The Kresge Foundation

The Kresge Foundation was founded in 1924 to promote human progress. Today, Kresge fulfills that mission by building and strengthening pathways to opportunity for low-income people in America’s cities, seeking to dismantle structural and systemic barriers to equality and justice. Using a full array of grant, loan, and other investment tools, Kresge invests more than $160 million annually to foster economic and social change. For more information visit