Grant part of $618,000 awarded during first quarter during competitive grantmaking

Milwaukee, WI - The Greater Milwaukee Foundation invested $50,000 in Southeastern Wisconsin Common Ground's work toward restoring housing in Milwaukee's Sherman Park neighborhood and reversing the decline caused by the foreclosure crisis.

This is the second year the Foundation has provided a grant for the agency's Milwaukee Rising project, which started in 2008. Through Milwaukee Rising, the agency has secured funding agreements from several national banks to contribute toward the local efforts toward rehabbing and selling a total of 100 properties over four years. To date the agency has sold three properties, rehabbed six homes and 21 additional properties are in the works.

"Common Ground's work represents significant progress toward addressing the impact of foreclosures in the city," said Darlene Russell, a Foundation program officer. "The agency's commitment and determination over the past few years with Milwaukee Rising is definitely paying off for the Sherman Park neighborhood and the city as a whole."

Additional grants of $25,000 and above made as a part of the competitive grantmaking process include:

Strengthening neighborhoods

Housing Resources: $45,000 to support the agency's 2012 Healthy Neighborhoods Annual Tour of Homes and series of financial workshops aimed at homebuyers and residents in participating Healthy Neighborhoods.

Rebuilding Together Greater Milwaukee: $40,000 to expand the outreach and support for its Housing Plus program, which works with longtime homeowners to give them the tools they need to help them stay in their homes. The funding will enable it to complete home assessments, make free emergency or essential home repairs, and accessibility modifications. The program will focus on the nine neighborhoods participating in the Foundation's Healthy Neighborhoods Initiative.

Albright Methodist Church: $35,000 to support staff and work underway in the Capitol Heights neighborhood as part of the Foundation's Healthy Neighborhoods Initiative.
Increasing income and building assets

Project RETURN: $35,000 to enable the agency to work with 150 low-income formerly incarcerated men and women find permanent employment.

Community Warehouse: $25,000 to support a full-time operations manager for its new division that develops, grows and supports employment initiatives with the business community.

YWCA of Greater Milwaukee: $25,000 for third year support of the Food Share Employment and Training Services Match Program. The agency works with homeless jobseekers in Milwaukee and aims to serve 300 people in 2012.

CommonBond Communities: $25,000 to support an onsite social worker for Bishop's Creek Family Housing Community, a development that serves 55 low-income families. The social worker will help residents with employment services provided through its Advantage Center.

Strengthening Education

Marquette University: $25,000 to gather and analyze data related to its Milwaukee Summer Reading Project. In 2012, the project will serve 160 low-income students entering grades two through four.

Community Initiatives

Lead2Change: $100,000 to support its work with empowering youth in the areas of youth leadership and service.

Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin: $50,000 to support the Milwaukee Teen Contraceptive Access Program, a part of the Milwaukee Teen Pregnancy Prevention Initiative. The program will train 30 adults to provide accurate information on contraception, increase outreach and marketing, recruit and train teen health promoters.

Bread of Healing Clinic: $50,000 to expand the capacity of the Free and Community Clinic Collaborative, for which it serves as the fiscal agent, by 20 percent. The collaborative consists of 25 free clinics across Milwaukee.

Ten Chimneys Foundation: $40,000 for lead support of the Lunt-Fontanne Fellowship Program.


About the Greater Milwaukee Foundation

The Greater Milwaukee Foundation is a family of more than 1,000 individual charitable funds, each created by donors to serve the local charitable causes of their choice. Grants from these funds serve people throughout Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee and Washington counties. Started in 1915, the Foundation is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the world.

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