03/11/2011 in Grantmaking

Gund Trustees Approve First Grants of 2011

The George Gund Foundation made grants at its March meeting to an innovative music education program, two organizations working on public policy related to health reform implementation in Ohio and continuing efforts to revitalize downtown Cleveland.

The Foundation made a two-year grant of $60,000 to the Rainey Institute for El Sistema@Rainey, an after-school instrumental program based on the Venezuelan program that has attracted international attention for transforming the lives of at-risk children through music.

The Health Care Policy Institute of Ohio received $200,000 over two years for research and analysis on issues ranging from Medicaid reform to state and federal health care cost containment proposals. Ohio Grantmakers Forum was awarded $20,000 for a project to facilitate collaboration among Ohio funders on issues related to health care reform implementation.

The Downtown Cleveland Alliance received a grant of up to $250,000 for its continuing efforts to make downtown Cleveland “the most compelling place to live, work and visit in the region.”

The grants were among 59 totaling $3,489,875 that were made to a wide range of arts, human service, environment, education and economic development organizations at the Foundation’s first board meeting of 2011. Trustees also made a $25,000 program-related-investment to the Noteworthy Credit Union so it can expand its loan program for artists.

Other grants of interest include:

  • $180,000 over two years to the Cuyahoga Valley Countryside Conservancy in operating support for its work in protecting farmlands, supporting local farmers and promoting local food.
  • $50,000 to Oberlin College to fund efforts to make the college and the City of Oberlin America’s first carbon neutral community.
  • $80,000 over two years to City Year to support its program in Cleveland.
  • $50,000 to the Cleveland Foodbank for advocacy and public education initiatives.
  • $60,000 to the Greater Cleveland Media Development Corporation for its efforts to build and support a film industry in Cleveland.

The George Gund Foundation was established in 1952 by George Gund, former chairman of the Cleveland Trust Company. The Foundation funds programs that enhance our understanding of the physical and social environment in which we live and increase our ability to cope with its changing requirements. Grants are made quarterly in the areas of education, human services, economic and community development, environment and arts. Foundation commitments to date have totaled more than $542 million.