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Giving and Philanthropy : Buzz

26 Giving and Philanthropy Articles | Page: | Show All

L.A. Times catches up with Denver's Laundry Truck

The Los Angeles Times spotlighted Denver's Laundry Truck in a feature that called the aid to homelss people "simple and innovative."

An excerpt:

“You need 13,000 watts running through the truck to make it work,” said Tim Reinen, executive director of Radian Inc., a nonprofit design group that worked with Bayaud on the truck. “Then you have six dryers operating simultaneously at 120 degrees heated by propane.”

And an 800-pound generator mounted underneath.

After several redesigns and $90,000 in donations, the truck hit the streets in April. Denver Water, a city utility, lets it hook up to fire hydrants for water and provides a meter to measure how much it uses. Since then the truck has washed 660 loads, or about 10,000 pounds of laundry."

Read the full story here.

Construction Equipment magazine offers comprehensive take on I-70's innovative jobs program

The innovative jobs program for the Interstate 70 renovation project was big news in the construction industry.  Illinois-based Construction Equipment magazine offered a suprisingly thorough look, showing how different constituenices value news differently.

It is a unique program, as the story points out:

"An estimated 350 workers will be drawn from the area and provided with training to build the Central 70 project now and a good career as time goes on."

The training is real -- and funded:

"Using a $400,000 federal grant received last year, CDOT will partner with Gary Community Investments (GCI) to provide more than $1 million for training and support programs, including child care so residents can take advantage of the training opportunities and jobs.  Last year the U.S. Department of Transportation gave CDOT – one of only nine other transportation agencies nationwide – permission to pilot a local-hire program for Central 70."

Read the whole story here.


Bloun Art Info notes major donation to Denver Art Museum

Blouin Art Info noted that the Denver Art Museum will receive significant works as part of a donation from the
Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros,

Here's an excerpt:

"According to CPPC, “The donation seeks to expand the geographical and temporal horizons of these institutions’ collections, expand scholarship, and offer a broader, more diverse and inclusive vision of Latin American artistic production from the 17th century to the mid-19th century.”

CPPC’s colonial art collection was formed with the aim of creating a broad representation of Venezuelan art from the mid-1600s to the mid-1800s. The core is complemented by works from the viceroyalties of New Spain (Mexico) and Peru as well as elsewhere in the Spanish Caribbean."

Read the rest of the article here.     

ARTnews covers MCA Denver grant

The $400,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation will fund "Animating Museums" workshops.


The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver announced yesterday that it has received a $400,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The grant will go toward a three-year program, “Animating Museums,” for which professionals from around the world will be brought to Denver to host a series of workshops.

"Animating Museums" will start this summer with a ten-day residency. The next year, the fellows will participate in a series of webinars related to their fields, and the year after that, they will realize a major project, which the museum said will likely be "a large scale festival or similar activation." Applications to become a participant in the program are currently available at a site launched by the MCA.

Read the rest here.

Government Technology looks at DPS Imaginarium

Government Technology magazine reported on Denver Public Schools' Imaginarium in a feature on innovation in education.


At the other end of the spectrum is the imaginarium, an innovation lab launched last year by Denver Public Schools. Part of its reason for being is to counter traditional approaches to improving education, explained Peter Piccolo, director of innovation at the lab. "My colleagues are making sure the trains go down the tracks while I'm trying to build the rocketship," he said. 

There's also a big difference in the amount of money that governments are willing to spend. Gregory couldn't put a number on the cost of his program, but it probably amounts to little added expense. The cost of provisioning space on CalCloud is low. There is also the cost of the manpower of the developers. Currently, any other expenses are coming out of the state's enterprise IT fund, which already supports approved IT projects that are developed in the lab. But the program is brand new, and the state is still discussing how projects might be funded in the future, said Gregory.

The imaginarium, on the other hand, is a big investment. It has a staff of 20 and a budget this year of almost $6 million, with about $3.8 million coming from the school district and $2 million from philanthropies, according to Piccolo. 

Read the rest here.

Christian Science Monitor reports on GrowHaus

Christian Science Monitor covered The GrowHaus, a nonprofit indoor farm in Elyria-Swansea.


"How can we say that we have this amazing, healthy city, and boast our outdoors life, but we have these communities that don’t have access to healthy food?" says Coby Gould, executive director and cofounder of The GrowHaus. "We are a food-based organization, but ultimately we’re a community development organization -- and we use food as the tool, food as the lens."

The GrowHaus is based in a rehabbed, 20,000-square-foot space that was formerly a flower distribution center. It's surrounded by factories, highways, and rail lines, and the whistle of a freight train interrupted Mr. Gould's comments.

Read the rest here.

Fox News spotlights Denver women brewers making a statement

"Makin Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer" was first produced in December at Goldspot Brewing.


Female brewers in Denver, Colo. are taking a stand against oppression, sexism and anti-LGBT sentiments by collaborating to produce a series of craft brews that will be released leading up to president-elect Donald Trump's inauguration later this month. 

The first batch of "Makin Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer" was produced on Dec. 28 at Goldspot Brewing. Kelissa Hieber, Goldspot's head brewer and one of the group's key organizers, told FoxNews.com that the goal of the project isn't about promoting anti-Trumpism (though she admitted to Westword that many felt "defeated" and "helpless" after the election) but rather to foster unity among likeminded individuals and beer lovers.

"Despite a kneejerk reaction to assume that an inauguration day release insinuates a protest to Trump, however our only desire for this beer to to insight a larger sense of community and to stand up against injustice," Hieber said.

Read the rest here.

Next City spotlights workforce development in Denver

Next City reported on the decentralization and expansion of workforce development by the Denver Office of Economic Development.


Before this year, there weren't many spots in Denver where an unemployed person could get help stepping back into the job stream. A small cluster of employment service centers were huddled in the heart of the city, but most of its 11 districts were largely unserved.

Now that the Office of Economic Development (OED) has decided to divide Denver's job training programs out to private contractors, the number of government-funded work and economic assistance centers will jump seven-fold, going from seven to nearly 50 and spanning across all 11 districts instead of only five.

"People can access these services where they're comfortable instead of traveling [into downtown]," says Denise Bryant, director of the OED's workforce development program. "We have contractors and subcontractors that are now actually in the community."

Read the rest here.

Daily Breeze reports on Toastmasters proposed move to Denver

The Daily Breeze looked at Toastmasters International's proposed move to Denver, and the fight to keep the nonprofit's headquarters in Torrance, California.


"You hear about big companies moving out of California, especially to Texas," Chao said. "We have a couple of clients that have moved to Colorado. The even bigger driver is they can get into the housing market there. Prices are more affordable, and the real estate tax is less. And once they go there they realized they had a lower tax burden."

For companies, taxes are much lower in Colorado than in California. Colorado companies pay 4.63 percent of their company’s net income. California companies pay 8.84 percent, but also have a minimum amount they pay in taxes.

Nonprofits generally don’t pay taxes, Chao said. So moving to Colorado from Orange County would not offer any tax benefit to a group like Toastmasters, even though it may do so for individuals.

Read the rest here.


Inside Philanthropy spotlights "ascendance" of Denver arts

Inside Philanthropy covered the "ascendance" of the Denver arts scene in a story with the headline, "Small Town, Big Art."


As for Madden, his relationship with the Colorado arts community dates back 40 years. A pivotal moment occured in 1985, when he gathered a cadre of Colorado business leaders to form the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts (CBCA) with the goal of creating business and arts partnerships. Madden also founded the Museum of Outdoor Art in 1981, established the amphitheater Fiddler's Green in 1988, and opened the Madden Museum of Art in 2008.

Not too shabby.

And so the CBCA established the John Madden, Jr. Leadership Award in 2010 to recognize a business sector individual who has made significant contributions to advancing arts and culture in Colorado. (Needless to say, Madden was the inaugural recipient.)

Add it all up and the adage rings true: Rome -- or in the case, Denver's impressive arts scene -- wasn't built in a day.

Read the rest here.

Mile High Connects discusses transit equity at Stanford Social Innovation Review

Mile High Connects Executive Director Dace West pushed for transit equity in a piece published by Stanford Social Innovation Review


In 2004, Denver voters approved FasTracks, a $7.8 billion transit expansion, adding 122 miles of new light rail, 18 miles of bus rapid transit, and enhanced regional bus service to the region. Construction is currently under way on the multi-decade project, with four new rail and bus rapid transit lines opening in 2016 alone. Bolstered by early support from the Ford Foundation, local nonprofits and funders came together to take advantage of a historic opportunity and formed MHC in 2011. MHC is a cross-sector collaborative of nonprofits, foundations, businesses, and government leaders in the Denver region that makes an explicit connection between public transit and health equity.

MHC's goal is to ensure that Denver's transit build-out benefits low-income communities and communities of color by connecting them to affordable housing, healthy environments, high-quality education, and well-paying jobs. MHC serves as a backbone organization, influencing local and regional policies, leveraging and deploying resources, and helping residents of low-income communities and communities of color engage directly in decision making that affects their lives.

MHC's first public act was to create the Denver Regional Equity Atlas. The document starkly contrasted the relationship between new transit lines and issues of importance to the region's low-income communities, including the location of affordable housing, job centers, health-care institutions, and high- and low-performing schools, and how they were connected (or not) to the new tax-funded transit lines. Now an online interactive tool used by both community residents and decision makers, the Equity Atlas demonstrates that areas with lower incomes and higher concentrations of people of color have less access to healthy food, walkable blocks, and health centers, as well as significantly higher numbers of households that are burdened with relatively high housing and transportation costs. Over time, the tool has become important not only to document current disparities, but also to show population-level outcomes across the region.

Read the rest here.

Grantmakers in the Arts spotlights Bonfils-Stanton

The organization showcased Bonfils-Stanton Foundation's initiatives and accomplishments in a blog post.


Bonfils-Stanton is excited to be fostering dialogue on diversity and equity in the arts by convening community conversations on how arts organizations can better serve more diverse audiences. President and CEO Gary Steuer wrote a recent blog post detailing their efforts to enhance arts engagement with diverse communities. He writes:
The goal was to elicit honest dialogue about the barriers and successes of engaging diverse audiences… I think we all recognize -- the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation included -- that this can be difficult work. It can sometimes be uncomfortable, it can take us out of our comfort zone, and to do it right sometimes requires significant institutional change.
Two projects worth highlighting -- both in dance -- would be their partnerships with Wonderbound and Cleo Parker Robinson Dance. The Foundation was instrumental in guiding the evolution of Wonderbound, a modern dance company committed to working with live music performed by local musicians of all types and integrating other art forms from poetry to visual arts. Wonderbound has embedded itself as an agent of change within a community perceived as challenged, the epicenter of Denver's homeless population.

Cleo Parker Robinson Dance is Denver's most prominent African-American cultural organization with a national and international profile. The Foundation just recently committed to a significantly increased level of support (a 400% increase!) in order to invest in building a stronger infrastructure to enhance development, communications, and the operations of their school and theatre.

Read the rest here.

Chronicle of Philanthropy spotlights Bonfils-Stanton

The Chronicle of Philanthropy profiled the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation and examined its focus on the arts in Denver.


In late 2012, the foundation’s board decided to go all in. It hired Gary Steuer, then Philadelphia’s chief cultural officer, to lead the transition.

Although the foundation is relatively small -- it made $3.5 million in grants during the last fiscal year -- Mr. Steuer believes it can be a leader in Denver by attracting support from other funders.

"The breadth and quality of the cultural sector in Denver has grown exponentially over the past 20 years," he says. "At the same time, the philanthropic growth has been in foundations that explicitly exclude arts and culture."

Read the rest here.

Endless Vacation names DBG to top 10 gardens list

Endless Vacation named Denver Botanic Gardens to a list of the world's top 10 botanic gardens.


Colorado's dry climate is on spectacular display at the Denver Botanic Gardens, which are split between three locations: the main, 24-acre York Street enclosure; the larger Chatfield meadow and historic homestead; and the Mount Goliath alpine-wildflower garden. Exhibitions change with the seasons (one focused on Dale Chihuly was on view most recently), and the 5,258-square-foot Science Pyramid learning center just opened.

Read the rest here.

WSJ reports on Denver's SeedPaths

The Wall Street Journal reported on the Denver-based IT skills program, SeedPaths.


A few months ago, Edgar Cordova was a college student piling up debt and struggling to balance his studies with odd jobs.

Today, the 20-year-old is working for a Boulder software developer. "For the first time, I can afford things I need," said Mr. Cordova, the son of a janitor.

What changed his trajectory is SeedPaths, a computer-coding "boot camp" that runs an eight-week course for low-income adults, with the help of federal funds. The Denver company partners with county workforce centers, which tap the federal Workforce Investment Act to cover the $6,000 cost.

Read the rest here.
26 Giving and Philanthropy Articles | Page: | Show All
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