5 big-name funders just announced support for Philly nonprofits - Generocity Philly

Funding

Sep. 17, 2018 2:14 pm

5 big-name funders just announced support for Philly nonprofits

Knight Foundation, Lenfest Institute for Journalism and William Penn Foundation recently donated a collective $38.4 million — and the Rockefeller Foundation and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative may be adding more soon.

Barnes Foundation.

(Photo by B. Krist for Visit Philadelphia)

Full disclosure: Knight Foundation is a past funder of Generocity's Tech in the Commons event series.
Deep pockets coming through. 💰

Here’s who’s been funding Philly nonprofits recently:

1. Knight Foundation and The Lenfest Institute for Journalism

Knight is an especially active member of this list. First up: Last night, Knight announced the $5 million Philadelphia Art and Technology Fund, exclusively benefitting local arts institutions.

The inaugural winners, receiving $2.5 million each to implement new strategies for improving visitor engagement via tech, are the Barnes Foundation and Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA). Technical.ly Philly reports the PMA will create a “‘digital roadmap’ that integrates tech into all areas of operations,” and the Barnes will create a “digital engagement center to work collaboratively across the museum’s departments.”

Knight’s director of arts and technology innovation, Chris Barr, said the Philly-centric fund is a tribute to the institutions that have “led the field” in bringing tech into their work.

Next: Lenfest is being matched by Knight to throw a collective $20 million at the building of a local news accelerator supporting digital journalism innovation over the next five years.

About $10 million of that will go specifically to news innovation efforts in Philadelphia. The nonprofit institute was created in 2016 (known then as the Institute for Journalism in New Media) by the late philanthropist Gerry Lenfest and is the owner of Philadelphia Media Network.

And finally: Delaware River Waterfront Corporation is receiving $4 million toward engagement efforts in designing new public space at Penn’s Landing.

2. William Penn Foundation

The local funder picked 20 arts and culture nonprofits to receive a collective $9.4 million for arts education and public performances within its Creative Communities funding focus.

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Its Arts Education grants total $5.8 million and benefit these orgs:

  • Arden Theatre Company
  • ArtWell
  • Lantern Theater Company
  • Opera Philadelphia
  • Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
  • Philadelphia Orchestra Association
  • Philadelphia Youth Orchestra
  • Play On, Philly!
  • Settlement Music School
  • Taller Puertorriqueño
  • The Clay Studio
  • The Print Center
  • Walnut Street Theatre
  • WHYY

Its New Audiences/New Places grants total $3.6 million and benefit these orgs and their proposed projects:

  • The Barnes Foundation and People’s Emergency Center Community Development Corporation — A two-year series of arts programs at the Barnes and The Bank, a community hub in West Philadelphia
  • New York Live Arts and Philadelphia Photo Arts Center — An exhibit and community engagement series featuring artist Rashaad Newsome in Fall 2019
  • Philadelphia Contemporary — The October 2018 Festival for the People at the Cherry Street and Race Street piers
  • Philadelphia Orchestra Association— Multiple free neighborhood concerts over the next two years
  • Mural Arts Philadelphia — Three public projects about the Rail Park in 2019
  • Theatre Exile — A series of theatre workshops and plays presented in South Philly parks in Summer 2019 and 2020

3. The Rockefeller Foundation and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

This one is still pending, but it’s big news that as of today, two local nonprofits have been named finalists of the Communities Thrive Challenge, a $10 million fund from the New York City-based Rockefeller, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and Dr. Priscilla Chan.

The challenge benefits organizations working to improve “economic opportunity” for low-income Americans. Ten of the 20 finalists announced today will each receive $1 million and tech support by the end of 2018; the others will receive $5,000. The local finalists are:

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