When you are one, you have only just learned to speak. You move about clumsily and knock things down a lot. You don’t yet know what is possible, but you are burgeoning with life.
Here in Rhode Island, the issue of hedge fund investing of pension dollars has been a source of much conflict and concern. Hopefully with so many financial experts now leading our state government (Tom Sgouros, Seth Magaziner, Gina Raimondo, I’m talking to you!) we can make sure that public pension dollars in Rhode Island are invested wisely.
A rising tide lifts all boats, and a recent study shows that as the economy improves, disabled people are enjoying a bump in their employment numbers. The Kessler Foundation wants to jump on that positive wave and ride it for all it’s worth. By expanding training and employment initiatives, the foundation is looking to fund nonprofit disability organizations who want to take their strategy to the next level with more and better ways to hook disabled people up with jobs.
Bloomberg Philanthropies made our list of most interesting foundations in 2014 because of its wide range of huge gifts, signaling ways the foundation may be forging new giving paths in Michael Bloomberg’s first year outside of the mayor’s office. But there’s one interesting initiative at BP we haven’t talked about much, one that’s been getting big funding and spreading to new areas: Bloomberg’s Innovation Teams.
This initiative is mainly associated with Mike Bloomberg’s wonky obsession with making government more efficient. But it also offers insights into how one of America’s top funders aims to foster economic growth and job creation in U.S. cities, a challenge which has cofounded many foundations and yet is attracting new energy amid a growing focus on urban renewal.
The Robert R. McCormick Foundation is one funder that’s very attuned to young people’s interests in journalism and, as part of its larger grantmaking in this area, has often supported efforts to nurture that interest. Earlier this fall, for example, the foundation renewed its support of Free Spirit Media in Chicago with a two-year grant of $300,000 to expand its youth journalism program. The foundation also made grants to the True Star Foundation and the Community Television Network to support youth journalism.
I’m waiting for the day when organizations are paying to be on my google search results page. Meanwhile, Diane Ravitch already has Teach for America as a parasite for her search results. While in some ways it’s a tribute to the strength of Ravitch’s voice in the education reform debate, it’s also kind of creepy. For people who don’t notice the difference between ads and search results — like kids trying to educate themselves, for example — it could be very misleading and confusing.
With its largest grant to date from the Fund for New Jersey, Fair Share Housing Center (FSHC) is charging ahead with its mission to expand affordable housing and fight exclusionary zoning throughout New Jersey.