2013 Report on Foundation ActivitiesIn 2013, the Foundation made grants for both capital projects and its community-based Strategic Initiatives. The capital grants were not new, but represented payments of multi-year pledges made to several health, education and cultural institutions in the Boston area. The community-based grants were new and were the result of competitive applications submitted in response to RFPs developed for each Initiative area.
The Foundation made grants totaling $13,424,000 in 2013. Grantees numbered seventy-one. Ten grants went for capital projects. Fifty-five grants went to organizations supported through the Foundation’s Disability Inclusion, Youth in the Arts and Access to Opportunity Initiatives. In each of the Initiatives, the Foundation supported not only direct services to specific populations but also efforts geared to systemic change and/or public policies benefiting the targeted constituencies.
Beyond its grant making, the Foundation was represented on the governing boards of two Boston nonprofits - English for New Bostonians and Associated Grant Makers (AGM). At AGM, Foundation staff was also part of a steering committee that helped to launch a Disability Funders affinity group. In addition, the Foundation continued to partner with the J.E. and Z.B. Butler Foundation in quarterly convenings of the Disability Task Force, a group of nonprofit leaders who gather to share information and create strategies for addressing issues affecting the lives of persons with disabilities.
In the early fall, the Foundation announced to its grantees that it would be pausing the funding of its Initiative programs at the end of the calendar year. This decision was made to allow the Trustees the opportunity to step back, re-assess the use of the Foundation’s resources, and plan for how the Foundation can make the best contribution to Boston in the future. While the process will be challenging, the hope is that this will give the current Trustees, as well as the next generation, the resources and flexibility to decide how to best serve the community going forward. With this announcement, Foundation staff are stepping down and the Trustees are taking the lead in guiding the Foundation to its next stage.
The Foundation values its partnerships with all of its grantees, large and small. As it moves forward, the Foundation plans to stay in touch with these organizations and to consider how it might continue to work with them in the future.