02/23/2024 in Announcements

The Gund Foundation awards $5.56 million at its February meeting

The George Gund Foundation awarded $5.56 million at its first board meeting of the year, including several grants that have a deep impact on the mental and behavioral health needs of both adults and young people in our community.

Magnolia Clubhouse received a $100,000 grant award to support the launch of a groundbreaking Care Response pilot program in select Cleveland neighborhoods: Cudell, Detroit-Shoreway, Slavic Village, and Union-Miles. Care Response brings a mental health response to people experiencing crises when a law enforcement intervention is not deemed necessary. This model has been shown to significantly mitigate harm, particularly for people of color and those living with serious mental illness who face an outsized risk of arrest, multiple bookings, or physical danger when law enforcement is called to the scene.

Say Yes Cleveland was awarded $200,000 to pursue a rating by the Title IV-E Prevention Clearinghouse as an evidence-based program. This rating would allow Say Yes to be incorporated into Ohio’s Family First Prevention Plan as an approved integrated health prevention service, thereby providing an opportunity to access Title IV-E funds for services delivered to Cleveland Metropolitan School District students who meet the Family First candidacy criteria.

The Mental Health & Addiction Advocacy Coalition was awarded $45,000 for the second phase of an important research study designed to identify and address racial and ethnic inequities in Ohio’s community behavioral health syst­em. According to the Coalition’s study, individuals from racial or ethnic minority groups face additional challenges in accessing quality and affordable behavioral health services, including stigma related to seeking assistance, lack of diversity and cultural competence among providers, language barriers, and distrust in the health care system.

In addition to these awards, the Foundation’s grants reflect priorities outlined in the Foundation’s What We Believe statement as well as priorities across program areas. Grants include the following:

  • $500,000 over two years to the Young Latino Network for capacity building and general operations. The Young Latino Network focuses on building the pipeline of next generation Latino leaders in Greater Cleveland, bridging cultural and socioeconomic divides within the community and building political power through civic education and voter mobilization efforts.
  • $30,000 to As You Sow, a national nonprofit rooted in the belief that corporations must be part of the solution to today’s climate crisis. As You Sow promotes environmental and social corporate responsibility through shareholder advocacy, coalition building, and innovative legal strategies.
  • $600,000 over three years to the NAACP Cleveland Branch for capacity building and general operations. The Cleveland NAACP regards civic responsibility as the cornerstone of a thriving and equitable society, going beyond the important act of voting to also encompass active engagement in community affairs, advocating for social justice, and fostering a sense of unity among our city’s diverse populations.
  • $148,000 over two years to Sankofa Circle to further a post-COVID reinvigoration of the local Collaborative for Sexual Health Equity and Learning and implement its new three-year strategic plan.
  • $80,000 over two years to the Piano International Association of Northern Ohio (PIANO), which will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2025. PIANO brings the world’s best emerging pianists to Cleveland. Its flagship event—the internationally respected Cleveland International Piano Competition—begins with contestants performing their first-round pieces in March and April and ends with live competition rounds in July and August.
  • $900,000 over three years to the Urban League of Greater Cleveland for general operations. The Urban League works to eliminate the racial, economic, and societal barriers that prevent Black Americans and other underserved communities of color from achieving their full potential.

Further details on the February 2024 grants can be found at gundfoundation.org.

In 1952, The George Gund Foundation was established 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, democracy building, public education, thriving families and social justice, and vibrant neighborhoods and inclusive economy. To date, Foundation commitments have totaled over $919 million.