On the heels of the midterm elections, The George Gund Foundation awarded $19.3 million at its final board meeting of 2022. Among other awards, the Trustees approved up to $500,000 to support the leadership transition for incoming Cuyahoga County Executive Chris Ronayne.
“Thoughtful and transparent leadership transitions must be both a hallmark and promise of our democracy,” said Anthony Richardson, president of The George Gund Foundation. “To be sure, the work of democracy building encompasses robust citizen participation in elections, but it also must extend beyond elections to effective governance.” Supporting nonpartisan democracy is one of the core priorities of the Foundation.
Additional grants reflect the Foundation’s other core priorities of racial equity and climate justice as well as priorities in program areas. Grants include:
- $1,000,000 for ongoing efforts to reduce the infant mortality rate of Black babies in Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, and Summit County, including $500,000 over two years to First Year Cleveland and $500,000 over two years to Birthing Beautiful Communities.
- $1,500,000 to the Amalgamated Charitable Foundation to support the Partnership for Equitable and Resilient Communities (PERC) initiative, which will support the development of equity-based community development strategies that shift power and resources to Black, Indigenous, and Latinx communities.
- $200,000 over two years to the Spanish American Committee, the oldest Hispanic nonprofit agency in Ohio serving as a gateway to socioeconomic success for Latino individuals and families.
- $325,000 to continue the work of the Racial Equity Racial Justice initiative, which includes thirteen local movement leader organizations: Black Environmental Leaders, Building Freedom, Refresh Collective, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Ghetto Therapy, Growing Church Environment, IOBY, Khnemu Foundation, Literacy in the H.O.O.D., Legal Aid Society, Peel Dem Layers Back, See You at the Top, and Thrive Scholars.
- $100,000 to the Achievement Centers for Children to form and operate a public advocacy network of local nonprofit service providers serving children and adults with disabilities and their families.
- $750,000 over three years to Youth Opportunities Unlimited to support the delivery of the planning and career exploration (PACE) curriculum in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, which seeks to equip students in grades 6–12 with career interests, exploration, and pathways.
- $150,000 to the Association of African American Cultural Gardens, which is dedicated to the completion and maintenance of the African American Cultural Garden in Cleveland’s Cultural Gardens.
- $100,000 over two years to Literary Cleveland to assist writers and readers, promote new and existing high-quality literature, and advance Northeast Ohio as a vital center of diverse voices and visions.
- $375,000 over three years to Environmental Health Watch to conduct healthy home services, particularly for low-income, Cleveland neighborhoods with a high prevalence of substandard, disinvested housing.
- $120,000 over two years to Praxis Integrated Fiber Workshop to support the indigo cooperative, which uses and distributes indigo dye made on-site, and provides education about indigo’s harmful past while engaging the mostly BIPOC residents of the Collinwood neighborhood.
- $175,000 to the United Black Fund to support post-event planning, programming, and infrastructure building efforts that build momentum from the FutureLAND conference and help create a more inclusive local tech sector.
- $1,000,000 over two years to Growth Opportunity Partners to continue building its Green Bank, the only Green Bank in Ohio and the first Black-led Green Bank in the country.
Further details on the November 2022 grants can be found at gundfoundation.org.
The George Gund Foundation was established in 1952 by George Gund, former chair 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 three times a year in the areas of climate and environmental justice, creative culture and arts, public education, thriving families and social justice, and vibrant neighborhoods and inclusive economy. Foundation commitments to date have totaled over $904 million.