Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Foundations think out of box to aid Detroit

In the city of Detroit, major foundations -- Kresge, Community Foundation, Kellogg, just to name a few -- have agreed to take on greater risk in projects that need major investment -- a light-rail system and tackling blight for instance. This is an unprecedented role for the foundations, who traditionally engage in more low-key, behind-the-scenes, and specific social issues. As a native Detroiter, this news gives me hope that the revitalization of Detroit will continue to progress with great success.

Foundations are giving differently in Detroit, in a manner unseen in other American cities. And the $366 million "grand bargain," is a prime example of that.

It's philanthropy's biggest calling and its biggest collaboration in Detroit history, credited as the cornerstone in the city's bankruptcy.

The joint agreement by 12 foundations, in which private funds as well as $195 million from the state and $100 from the Detroit Institute of Arts, will be used to shore up city pensions and protect the art collection from creditors.

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