Charity Begins at Home

April 23, 2003 1 min read

Here’s a sampling of other foundations that concentrate their giving geographically and primarily on education.

The Benwood Foundation, in Chattanooga, Tenn., concentrates much of its grantmaking on early-childhood and secondary education in the Chattanooga area. George Hunter founded the philanthropy with his earnings from his Coca- Cola bottling company. Currently, the foundation’s endowment is worth $90 million. In 2001, it awarded a $5 million over five years to the Public Education Foundation in Chattanooga to improve education at nine low- performing, high-poverty schools in the city.

The Girard Foundation, in La Jolla, Calif., that supports K-12 education in San Diego County. In 2002, the $16.5 million foundation provided financing to set up the Principals Development Partnership, an independent nonprofit organization that works to improve preparation, recruitment, and professional development for local principals.

The Rose Community Foundation supports groups in and around Denver, where the philanthropy is located. Education is one of its five program areas. The $240 million foundation, which was established in 1995, granted $1.2 million to the Denver school district in 2001 for a “pay for performance” initiative to study the connection between teacher compensation and student achievement.

The Skillman Foundation, in Detroit, centers its grantmaking around projects that work to improve the lives and education of young people in the Detroit area. The $552 million foundation was established in 1960 by Rose and Robert Skillman. Mr. Skillman was one of the founders of the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Co., now known as 3M. Last month, the foundation awarded three local groups a total of $1.9 million to support school leadership programs.

The Walter S. Johnson Foundation, in Menlo Park, Calif., focuses on projects that improve public K-12 education and youth development. Grants are primarily limited to groups located in northern California. The $105 million foundation announced this year that it will give $250,000 over two years to the New Teacher Center, in Santa Cruz, for teacher-support programs, and $150,000 over three years to the New Haven Unified School District, in Union City, Calif., for a middle school literacy initiative.


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