The Community Foundation is one of the largest community foundations in the country. Together with its donors, it averages more than $75 million in grants annually to an estimated 2,000 nonprofit organizations, encouraging and strengthening multi-sector partnerships and strategic philanthropy as a whole. Here are some of the ways Future Foundation is benefitting from The Community Foundation’s support.
Strategic Restructuring Fund Opportunity with Communities in Schools of Atlanta
They say that two heads are better than one, and that has certainly proven true in our work with the Communities In Schools of Atlanta Partnership (CIS).
Both of our organizations serve students at Banneker High School–CIS is a partner with Future Foundation and other agencies in the College Park Enrichment Collaborative (CPEC), which serves residents of the Banneker High School Feeder Area and College Park Opportunity Zone who have limited access to culturally appropriate, systemic, and sustained enrichment services.
During the last months of 2014, we worked with CIS to develop a service delivery model designed to ensure that students at risk of dropping out of high school graduate and access concrete post-secondary education and employment options. Through this process, we discovered opportunities for joint partnership since major components of the model are afterschool (Future Foundation) and case management (CIS) services.
Encouraged, we participated in a unique program called FUSE15 (an initiative sponsored by the Mount Vernon Institute for Innovation and the Georgia Center for Nonprofits), which offered nonprofit partners an opportunity to present a business case, issue or challenge and teams using DEEP design thinking methodology – Discover, Empathize, Experiment, Produce – to build their personal skills sets and the capacity of nonprofit partners knowing that their designs and prototypes impacted the Georgia nonprofit community. As a collaborative team with CIS, we selected one of the many ideas generated by the team to pursue: data sharing in real time. This concept envisions an app that enables schools to share information about what they see in our students during the day, while we share what we experience with them during after school programs.
This experience led us to apply for a grant from The Community Foundation’s Strategic Restructuring Fund to strengthen and deepen our partnership. Recently we were notified that we had been awarded a grant for Partnership Assessment, which will enable our two organizations to assess our readiness and suitability as potential partners and examine the different types of partnership models.
We’re excited about the new possibilities ahead as we collaborate with CIS to develop ways to help students more effectively by improving two-way communications and knowledge sharing.