Bringing hope and change to 9 deserving communities
Bringing hope and change to 9 deserving communities
We have all heard stories of the obstacles communities face. This includes preparing for disasters, the challenge of protecting natural resources and water supplies, and the lack of transportation access for low-income residents. But how often do we hear positive news of local governments and organizations partnering in efforts to help resolve such issues and offer tangible solutions? With the help of Partners for Places, nine local communities are doing just that. They’ve come up with viable programs to address the most critical concerns of their regions. The Partners for Places program will be funding efforts across the country from Austin to Missoula to Northampton, projects devoted to neighborhood sustainability, alternative transportation, and increasing resilience to reduce the impact of disasters. This is the power of partnership and a model for how philanthropy can play a vital role in shaping better communities.
The nine communities were awarded a total of $478,936 by the Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities and its partner, the Urban Sustainability Directors Network. Partners for Places helps communities connect local government and philanthropy to invest in projects that promote a healthy environment, a strong economy, and well-being for all residents.
“Partners for Places brings together leaders in city government with leaders in philanthropy to create a nexus of opportunities to advance sustainability,” said Diane Ives, Fund Advisor to The Kendeda Fund. “It’s an honor to work with our local funding partners and draw from their deep base of community knowledge to help make these projects successful.”
In all, six investor funders make up Partners for Places: Bloomberg Philanthropies, The JPB Foundation, The Kendeda Fund, The New York Community Trust, Summit Foundation, and Surdna Foundation. Their investments support the work of the following Round Seven Partners for Places Grantees:
• Austin, TX, $100,000 to launch the Austin 2030 District, a voluntary initiative to reduce energy and water consumption and carbon emissions from Austin buildings. (Partner: The Meadows Foundation)
• Baltimore, MD, $75,000 to increase and enhance resiliency in neighborhoods most vulnerable to the impacts of natural hazards and climate change. (Partner: Baltimore Community Foundation; Town Creek Foundation)
• Bloomington, IN, $34,936 towards establishing and enhancing programs which assist vulnerable populations and create an outreach coordinator position to help meet Bloomington’s new residential energy reduction goal. (Partners: Community Foundation of Bloomington; Monroe County Duke Energy Foundation)
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• Cleveland, OH, $35,000 to mitigate and adapt to climate change by engaging residents in improving tree canopy, transportation mode shift, and entrepreneurship, delivering tangible outcomes for neighborhood resilience and equity. (Partner: Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland)
• Indianapolis, IN, $50,000 to support early action projects in the creation of three vibrant urban village centers in Indianapolis by enhancing Livability, Opportunity, Vitality, and Education. (Partner: JP Morgan Chase Foundation)
• Louisville, KY, $75,000 will go towards implementing a neighborhood-scale greening plan in a socioeconomically and environmentally-deprived neighborhood; this project will assess the impact of the natural environment on human health. (Partner: Owsley Brown Family Foundation)
• Missoula, MT $45,000 to prepare the community to thrive amid increasing summer wildfire smoke and heat by helping Missoulians to be physically, mentally, and economically healthy and resilient. (Partner: Missoula Community Foundation)
• New Orleans, LA $39,000 to create a GIS tool that collects environmental, social, and health outcome data to better inform the City and developers on how, where, and when to incorporate “green”. (Partner: Greater New Orleans Foundation)
• Northampton, MA $25,000 will help develop a Complete Streets plan for Northampton, with an emphasis on equity and prioritization of projects based on socioeconomic status of residents and connectivity. (Partner: Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts)
To date, Partners for Places has awarded over $3 million across North America.
Partners for Places will open an eighth round of funding with a Request for Proposals available in early December 2015. For a comprehensive guide of past funded projects, potential applicants have access to an Idea Bank on the Funders’ Network website, which provides summaries of projects which have met the criteria.
Partners for Places – a project of the Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities is a successful matching grant program that improves U.S. and Canadian communities by building partnerships between local government sustainability leaders and place-based foundations. National funders invest in local projects developed through these partnerships to promote a healthy environment, a strong economy and well-being for all residents. Through these investments, Partners for Places fosters long-term relationships that make our communities more prosperous, livable and vibrant.
Partners for Places is a collaborative effort of the Funders’ Network and the Urban Sustainability Directors Network. For more information on Partners for Places, please visit the Funders’ Network website at https://www.fundersnetwork.org/partnersforplaces/. Funders interested in becoming a part of Partners for Places should contact Ann Wallace at the Funders’ Network.