News
Member news plus local and national philanthropic reporting

  • December 16, 2020 9:45 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (Tuesday, December 15, 2020 by Desu.edu) DSU is a Philanthropy Delaware member.  Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott, who has already become one of the most significant benefactors for racial equity causes, announced today that her second cycle of charitable donations has been completed, bringing her 2020 total of giving to an unprecedented $4.158 billion to 384 nonprofit and charitable organizations, including a $20 million gift to Delaware State University. The gift marks the largest single gift ever received by Delaware State University.

    Ms. Scott, recently listed by Forbes as one of the world’s “most powerful women,” noted in her statement that in selecting the recipient organizations, she and her advisors “took a data-driven approach to identifying organizations with strong leadership teams and results, with special attention to those operating in communities facing high projected food insecurity, high measures of racial inequity, high local poverty rates, and low access to philanthropic capital.”

    Today’s recipients, culled from an initial list of 6,490 organizations, included 15 other Historically Black Colleges and Universities besides Delaware State University, and, locally, the YMCA of Delaware.

    Delaware State University President Tony Allen responded to the announcement, saying, “Ms. Scott’s gift is not only a reflection of her enormous generosity, but also a clear commitment to a more equitable and just society – one that wholly recognizes that in our country’s history we have sometimes stumbled, but focuses nonetheless on the American tradition of cooperative uplift.  The award is a force multiplier for some of the nation’s most important institutions and the great many students they have propelled forward to change the world.”  

    Allen indicated that the $20 MM is an unrestricted gift, which will be used for specific strategic investments to grow the University, extend its intellectual capital to help solve some of the global community’s most pressing problems, and enhance sustainability for generations to come.  Most notably he highlighted:

    • The recently developed Global Institute for Equity, Inclusion, and Civil Rights, an institute designed to build the capacity toward an inclusive economy;
    • The ongoing acquisition of Wesley College and the creation of an integrated College of Health and Behavioral Sciences focused on preparing the next generation of health care professionals and practitioners;
    • A healthy investment into the University’s endowment which will open up additional scholarship opportunities for students while simultaneously increasing the institution’s financial resiliency in the face of future challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Board of Trustees Chairwoman Dr. Devona Williams reflected on the significance of Ms. Scott’s gift, saying, “It is a truly transformational gift that will provide the resources to enable our fine University to continue to grow, flourish and meet its very important mission of providing the highest quality education to the most diverse student body in the nation who will become our future leaders. We are both honored and humbled to receive it.”

    The grant wraps up an historic fundraising year for the University.  Amid millions of dollars in financial loss as a result of COVID-19, the institution raised more than $32 MM from a variety of notable corporations, foundations and alumni.  Those awards have included gifts from Bank of America, Laffey-McHugh Foundation, Barclays, Testing for America, JPMorgan Chase, Delmarva Power/Exelon, and many others. 

    In announcing JPMorgan Chase’s recent $1 MM gift, Market President Tom Horne emphasized the reason that more partners than ever are being attracted to the University: “For us, the right partners are those with great vision, a shared commitment to access and excellence, and a desire to create more opportunities for their clients and customers. Delaware State University has proven to be a noteworthy institution in all three areas. And we are proud to be standing with them.”

  • December 16, 2020 11:05 AM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 16, 2020 by Press Release) – Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware is a member of Philanthropy Delaware. Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware announced today the recipients of its social determinants of health grant cycle through its donor-advised fund, BluePrints for the Community.

    The grant cycle opened in September, originally set to total $1 million, in response to the continuously growing needs that existed prior to, but have been exacerbated by, the pandemic. Highmark Delaware decided to increase funding in accordance with the volume and quality of the projects and programs it received, totaling more than $1.9 million.

    “We are not at all surprised by the excellent grant proposals we have seen through this grant cycle and we are proud to support 17 grant recipients in the tremendous work they are doing,” said Nick Moriello, president of Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware. “It was a difficult decision process and we applaud all the organizations that applied for their dedication to our community. They have exemplified that we are all in this together, and Highmark and BluePrints are privileged to take part.”

    Key areas of social determinants of health that were considered included economic and financial stability, access to education, transportation, health and health care, including dental/oral health, and neighborhood and environment factors.

    “Our Delaware nonprofits have again stepped up to answer the call for those in need and we couldn’t be more proud. While we weren’t able to support every proposal, we ask our colleagues to join us in congratulating the recipients and in, not just applauding the efforts of all our nonprofit friends, but in supporting them,” said Rita Landgraf, Director of University of Delaware’s Partnership for Healthy Communities and Professor of Practice and Distinguished Health & Social Services Administrator in Residence. Landgraf serves as the chair of the Blueprints for the Community Advisory Council.

    Recipients and their projects/programs include:

    1. Catholic Charities - Diocese of Wilmington will receive funding to support its Behavioral Health Services Program for low income families to address emotional, behavioral, and mental health concerns.
    2. Children and Families First DE requested funding to establish an EnVision Center site to serve residents of an identified Section 8 housing neighborhood with supports and wrap-around services.
    3. Culture Restoration Project, Inc. will use funding to transform a vacant lot into an impactful arts and culture space for the community in a high needs area called the Sankofa Healing Space.
    4. Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition will receive a grant to support breast health education, screening, navigation, and virtual programs in New Castle, Kent, and Sussex Counties.
    5. Delaware Center for Horticulture requested funding for their Neighborhood Tree Steward Program, which addresses health through green spaces and natural modifications to neighborhood environment.
    6. Family Promise of Northern New Castle County, Inc. will use grant funding to expand services for their Hospitality Center and Network which provides assistance to quickly move families into permanent housing.
    7. First State Community Action Agency requested support for their Home is Health Program to provide in-home assessment of risk factors, installation of Healthy Homes kits, and community education.
    8. Great Oaks Charter School – Wilmington will use their grant to support students and their families in New Castle County with mental and physical health services and community intervention.
    9. Jewish Family Services of Delaware’s Employment Support Network will receive funding, which will use volunteers from different professions to support unemployed individuals in response to the effect COVID-19 has had on unemployment.
    10. NCALL Research, Inc. requested funding to expand their Opioid Outreach and Restoring Central Dover Programs in order to continue current services to the residents of Central Dover and begin serving Dover Housing Authority neighborhoods.
    11. Neighborhood House, Inc. will receive support for a Wellness Coach to serve students engaged with their Learning Hubs program in the Southbridge area.
    12. Sojourners' Place was approved to receive funds in support their comprehensive Transitional Housing Program, which will provide education services, job skills and employment training to help homeless adults become self-sufficient.
    13. Survivors of Abuse in Recovery will get funding to support their Children and Teen Project to provide mental health services to teen-aged survivors of sexual abuse and assault statewide.
    14. Sussex County Habitat for Humanity requested a grant for their Home Stabilization Affordable Housing Initiative, which addressing weatherization, improves accessibility, and provides financial coaching and energy efficient solutions to lower costs for 345 low-income families.
    15. Tidal Health’s Wagner Wellness Program was approved for funding to purchase a mobile health van that will provide health screenings, multidisciplinary health services, education and outreach in low-income rural communities.
    16. United Way of Delaware, Inc. requested funding to expand the $tand By Me Program in response to COVID-19 to provide financial coaching statewide.
    17. Westside Family Healthcare was approved for funding for it Feeding Families Program to address food insecurity, expand access to fresh foods, provide routine nutrition counseling, and teach patients how to better manage their chronic disease.

    Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware, along with its enterprise-wide social determinants of health (SDOH) team at Highmark Health, aims to address the confluence of medical and non-medical drivers of poor health outcomes. Enterprise efforts include Highmark’s free and anonymous online resource tool Highmark Community Support, powered by Aunt Bertha. Highmark Community Support is an online, social care network that connects people with social service resources, such as food pantries, transportation services, housing and utility needs, child care, and niche needs for populations like veterans and seniors. Highmark Community Support can be accessed at Highmark.auntbertha.com. Highmark is also a sponsor of the Gravity Project, an organization developing consensus-driven structured data standards to support use and exchange of SDOH data that can help identify and measure social barriers, strengthen continuity of care and provide important insights into the intersection between health and social care.

    About Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware

    Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware serves approximately 441,000 members through the company’s health care benefits business. It is an influential company in the market generating an economic impact of $135 million and supporting more than 1,000 direct and indirect jobs across the state. Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information, visit www.highmarkbcbsde.com.

    About BluePrints for the Community

    BluePrints for the Community, the donor-advised fund of Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Delaware at the Delaware Community Foundation, has contributed over $17 million to the community since its inception in 2007. It was established to serve Delawareans, with emphasis on, but not limited to, the needs of the uninsured and underserved, and to reduce health care disparities in minority population and address social determinants of health.


  • December 15, 2020 10:00 AM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 11, 2020 by Brenda Bouw Theglobalmail.com) - The holiday season is a time when Canadians turn their attention to giving back. That’s particularly the case this year as the COVID-19 pandemic has left many in need of financial support.

    In fact, financial advisors say they’ve been having more discussions with clients about charitable giving in recent weeks, and that the topic is becoming a larger part of financial and estate planning, in general.

    “Philanthropy is becoming more and more important as an overall goal when you talk about planning, especially for high-net-worth Canadians,” says Glen Brown, managing director and head of Manulife Private Wealth in Toronto. “And this time of year is when people give a lot of thought to giving. I think we are going to see more of a focus on this issue because of COVID-19.”

    Tannis Dawson, vice-president of high-net-worth and business succession planning at TD Wealth Advisory Services in Winnipeg, says she’s hearing from more clients who are either looking to give more or to give back in different ways this year.

    “With many stores not open [due to the pandemic] and people not getting together, more people are giving donations in a person’s name in lieu of gifts,” she says.

    Regardless of how or how much you give, there are ways to give back that not only make you feel good but can also be tax efficient. Here are some of the options for investors to consider:

    DONATE SECURITIES

    Many investors choose to donate investments such as stocks or investment funds directly to charities as a way to give back and avoid paying capital gains taxes.

    “Capital gains aren’t taxable if the securities are donated to a charity in-kind,” Ms. Dawson says.

    She uses the example of an investor who buys shares of a company for $8,000 and donates them when the value reaches $10,000. The investor will receive a donation tax credit for $10,000 and will not pay taxes on the capital gain of $2,000. Also, if the charity sells the stock, it will receive the $10,000 tax-free.

    Business owners can make the same transaction through their corporations, Ms. Dawson says. The difference is that the $10,000 donation will be a straight deduction from the business’s expenses. Similar to the personal donation, the $2,000 gain on the investment isn’t taxed.

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    She adds that the corporation can only deduct a donation of up to 75 per cent of its income for the year during which it’s made. Any amount above that can be carried forward for use in future years.

    Employees can also donate stock options to a charity, which are taxed and can be substantial depending on the size of the options. The key point is that they have to make the donation within 30 days of the date at which they exercise the options and in the same calendar year, Ms. Dawson says.

    “If you were going to make a charitable donation, anyway, it makes sense to do it that way to reduce the taxes,” she says.

    CREATE A FOUNDATION OR DONOR-ADVISED FUND

    Many high-net-worth families choose to set up a foundation to distribute their wealth to charities. The two main types are a private foundation and a donor-advised fund. With a private foundation, the donor can distribute grants to charities and is responsible for all of the administration. Meanwhile, with a donor-advised fund, a public foundation handles the administration and distributes the funds based on the donor’s wishes.

    The advantage of both options is that the donor receives the tax deduction immediately while distributing the funds over a longer period of time, says Kevin Burkett, portfolio manager at Burkett Asset Management Ltd. in Victoria.

    Mr. Burkett, who also operates the accounting firm Burkett & Co. Chartered Professional Accountants through which he advises clients on options to create a long-term legacy with their funds, often collaborates with the Victoria Foundation, a community foundation in British Columbia that can serve this purpose.

    He says more investors are choosing donor-advised funds, leaving the administration to someone else while keeping the more fulfilling job of choosing which charities to support.

    “Donor-advised funds can be a very efficient means of establishing an ongoing funding stream [for charities] without placing yourself under the administrative burden of registering and maintaining charitable status,” Mr. Burkett says. “It’s a great way to avoid becoming mired in complexity.”

    DONATE THROUGH INSURANCE

    A growing number of investors are also using life insurance policies as a way to donate to charities, which usually enables them to make a larger gift.

    Ms. Dawson says the most common ways to donate include assigning a charity as a beneficiary in a will, which means the estate gets the tax credit, or changing the policy beneficiary to a charity and receiving the tax credit while alive.

    In the latter example, the donor would receive a tax credit for the fair market value of the policy at the time of transfer, as well as any annual premiums paid.

    “When you pass away, the policy goes to the charity, which ends up with more money,” Ms. Dawson says.

    It’s also possible for charities to take on the premiums, but Ms. Dawson says the organization should be contacted first to ensure it’s on board with this option.

    HOW ADVISORS CAN HELP

    People interested in making larger financial donations should speak with their advisor to ensure both they and the charity are getting the most out of the gift, Mr. Burkett says.

    “Co-ordinating with different advisors can also bring a lot of benefits,” he says.

    For example, Mr. Burkett says advisors at his firm work with accounting professionals to set up donations using securities or to establish a donor-advised fund.

    Philanthropy is a growing area for advisors and a part of the wealth management process that Mr. Burkett says his team – and many of his clients – enjoy the most.

    “We love these sorts of questions. They give us an opportunity to lean into both sides of the business, bring them together and sync up the advice to the end client,” he says.

    “Clients are also expecting more from their investments … and many are driven by a wider purpose other than investment returns.”

    Mr. Brown says advisors should be including philanthropy in their wealth planning strategies with clients.

    “If you’re providing holistic planning, this is one of the areas you need to focus on,” he says. “Philanthropy is an excellent way to ensure you’re on the pulse of the family as an advisor."

  • December 14, 2020 4:13 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 1, 2020 by Philanthropy.com) - The uprisings that followed the killing of George Floyd brought renewed attention — and new donations — to organizations that focus on racial justice and overhauling criminal justice. Now those groups are looking to make even greater headway under the Biden administration.

    The American Civil Liberties Union is placing special emphasis on racial justice this year. Ronald Newman, the ACLU’s national political director, says securing broadband internet access for low-income residents is one issue that may actually get bipartisan support in a divided Congress. Low-income urban neighborhoods — often predominantly African American — suffer from inadequate access, just as many low-income rural neighborhoods do. Inadequate internet speeds can affect work, schooling, and obtaining critical information about the pandemic, Newman says.

    “You can see the landing space for potential bipartisan progress,” he says.

    He also hopes to see Biden take action to help close the racial wealth gap. In November, Biden said he supported canceling $10,000 worth of student debt, but progressives are pushing for the cancellation of all student debt. That would help close the racial wealth gap since Black people are far more likely than whites to be behind on student-loan payments.

    As President Trump pointed out during the debates, Biden has a mixed track record on racial and criminal justice — he supported a 1994 crime law that led to mass incarceration in the 1990s.

    “Both Biden and [Vice President-elect] Kamala Harris have things in their background that cause people who look at this work closely to question where they’re coming from,” says Ann Jacobs, executive director of the Institute for Justice and Opportunity at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. “They are among a large group of people who now say, ‘We got this wrong.’ They’re going to need to be pushed to do things that might not flow easily from their lips or their pens.”

    Philanthropy has played an important role in supporting advocacy that has reduced the prison population over the past decade, Jacobs says. The current fashion of supporting grassroots groups led by people of color is a positive step, she says, but foundations need to continue to support existing programs, like her institute, that serve large numbers of people — especially during this economic downturn when government contracts are being cut back. The Institute for Justice and Opportunity engages in advocacy to eliminate barriers to housing and education for former prisoners and also uses the resources of its parent, the City University of New York, to educate about 1,000 students a year who are currently or have been incarcerated.

    “We’re stronger as a large diversified community,” Jacobs says. “There needs to be some attention paid to sustaining all the components of this work long enough for the economy to bounce back.”

    Vivian Nixon, executive director of College & Community Fellowship, a New York City program that helps women recently released from prison earn college degrees, wants to see the federal government again allow prisoners to receive Pell Grants. Biden wants to reinstate Pell eligibility for formerly incarcerated people, but he has not said whether he would like to make current prisoners Pell eligible.

    Nixon acknowledges that President Trump has helped boost fundraising for groups like hers, but she thinks foundations and other donors will keep up their support during the Biden administration as they realize that additional policy and regulatory changes are possible.

    “There’s a sense of urgency that will cause people to hang in there,” she says.
  • December 14, 2020 3:27 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (Dec. 10, 2020 by Holly Quinn Technical.ly)  - Delaware State University is a Philanthropy Delaware Member. Delaware State University's College of Business (COB) will launch a COVID Recovery Lab  for New Castle County businesses.

    Called Bounce Forward, the initiative is an online platform designed to serve as a “springboard” for businesses in New Castle County to not only return to normal operations after the negative impact of the COVID pandemic, but also move forward, the university said. The project will be funded with $500,000 of CARES Act funding via an Innovate Grant from New Castle County.

    County businesses will have access to COVID-related biz info, best practices and relevant workforce training through the Recovery Lab, as well as expert consultation to help them through the pandemic and beyond.

    “The College of Business is eager to leverage the collective expertise of our faculty, staff and students to support the businesses of New Castle County,” said Dr. Michael Casson, dean of the COB, the principal investigator of the grant.

    The platform is expected to be completed and launched in January 2021. Per a press release, it will include:

    • A data repository that will provide relevant and on-demand, real-time industry-specific data and best-practices necessary to respond efficiently and effectively to dynamic economic conditions.
    • Virtual business training courses tailored to specific industry opportunities, guidelines and best practices.
    • Applied research and consulting that empowers businesses with the necessary analytics and knowledge to provide both a platform that ensures resiliency as well as a springboard for businesses to propel into innovative products and design that meet the demands of new economies. It will also include a peer-to-peer forum feature.
  • December 09, 2020 2:38 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 6, 2020 by Pleasantonweekly.com) - Wells Fargo is a Philanthropy Delaware Member. Wells Fargo Foundation funding $9.5M NeighborhoodLift initiative. 

    Homeownership may seem like a distant dream for many in the Bay Area, but a returning Wells Fargo program aims to help make it a reality for residents of six Bay Area counties.

    On Tuesday, Wells Fargo announced the launch of the NeighborhoodLIFT program in the Bay Area -- a $9.5 million project aiming to boost home ownership in the region by providing $25,000 in down payment assistance to 359 eligible homebuyers.

    "The economic fallout caused by COVID-19 has only exacerbated the housing affordability challenges in the Bay Area," said Max Seetho, Wells Fargo Bank region president for the Silicon Valley, in a statement.

    "While affordability and inventory continue to pose challenges, this initiative will make a positive impact on the lives of more low- and moderate-income families by putting them on a pathway to housing stability, wellness, and wealth accumulation through successful homeownership," Seetho said.

    Wells Fargo Foundation is providing the money, but the program is a collaboration between national affordable housing organizations Community Housing Development Corporation and Neighborhood Works.

    Residents of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Solano counties who earn 80% or less than the median household income in their respective county are encouraged to apply.

    In order to be eligible for the assistance, interested individuals must be pre-approved for a housing loan from a participating NeighborhoodLIFT lender and complete an eight-hour course on homebuyer education.

    "The required homebuyer education provided by trained professionals better prepares NeighborhoodLIFT homebuyers to achieve their goal of sustainable homeownership," Lisa Hasegawa, regional vice president, Western region with NeighborWorks America said.

    NeighborhoodLIFT also allocates $525,000 of the $9.5 million to local housing counseling organizations to assist 700 interested homebuyers with housing counseling.

    In the Bay Area, nearly half of renters use more than 30% of their income on housing, and for the bottom 25% of cost-burdened renters, rent takes more than half of their income, according to a 2020 Harvard study.

    Those staggering statistics make it hard for individuals or families to accumulate wealth and build equity, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo said, but putting people on the path of homeownership is a part of the solution.

    "We have much more work to do to broaden economic opportunity in the Bay Area and it's heartening to see Wells Fargo launch an initiative that embraces homeownership as the surest path to financial resilience for our families struggling on modest incomes," said Liccardo.

    Don Gilmore, executive director of Community Housing Development Corporation said the $25,000 of down payment assistance is only part of the support offered in the region and encouraged prospective homebuyers to layer assistance.

    The California Housing Finance Agency is one of the agencies Gilmore is talking about. And though their down payment assistance is not hefty as the LIFT program, the state agency has higher assistance rates specifically for teachers, firefighters and veterans.

    Gilmore also noted that NeighborhoodLIFT is unique "in how it changes lives by moving away from the uncertainty of renting by making homeownership more affordable, achievable, and sustainable."

    Tuesday's expansion of the NeighborhoodLIFT program marks Wells Fargo's 80th program launch and follows similar Bay Area initiatives in 2012 and 2017 that provided 536 homeowners with down payment assistance.

    Fairfield resident Montie Cross, a retired technology company worker was one of those 536 individuals who purchased her family's home with NeighborhoodLIFT down payment assistance.

    "This is my first-time owning a home so working with the credit counselor to prepare for the steps to qualify for a mortgage made everything go smooth," Cross said in a statement. "This is my house now and I don't need to rent any longer."

    Since 2012, Wells Fargo has invested $511 million in NeighborhoodLIFT and other LIFT programs across the country as part of Wells Fargo Foundation's commitment to donate $1 billion in support of housing affordability solutions.

    In the Bay Area, the Wells Fargo Foundation financed 34 affordable housing developments and supported the construction or renovation of 4,045 rental homes for residents at risk of homelessness as a result of climbing housing costs.

    Applications open on February 1, 2021 and will remain open for a week only. If 359 or fewer individuals apply, all that are eligible will get the down payment assistance. If there are more than 359 applicants, eligible individuals will be chosen through a lottery system, Gilmore said.

    Interested individuals should visit www.wellsfargo.com/lift for additional information and steps to apply. To see participating lenders and sign up for approved homebuyer education courses, visit www.communityhdc.org/lift.

  • December 09, 2020 2:22 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (Decemer 3, 2020 by Holly Quinn Technical.ly) - When COVID-19 hit last spring, forcing schools to close for the rest of the year, high school seniors got a lot of attention for a senior year full of canceled milestones. No prom, no senior trips and no graduation ceremony as we knew them.

    And then there was the question of whether college-bound students would be able to safely start their freshman year on campus.

    The class of 2020 faced a lot of challenges due to the pandemic, but one thing about the timing that was fortunate was that for students who did plan to attend college, the campus visits and application process — which normally happens between the spring of 11th grade through the fall of 12th grade — was finished.

    The class of 2021 has had that entire period disrupted.

    So, when New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer put out a call for education pitches for CARES Act grants, TeenSHARP and DelawareCAN founder Atnre Alleyne and his team came up with a proposal for a program that targets high school students who are interested in college, but have less access to college application resources due to the pandemic.

    The initiative, New Castle County Goes to College, was awarded $245,000.

    “For an organization of our size, that was a powerful investment,” said Alleyne.

    The goal? To reach 1,000 New Castle County students from early fall, when it began, through the end of December, the deadline for the funds. And not just teens who know they’re college bound — teens lacking support, knowledge or inspiration, who think college is not an option.

    Compared to TeenSHARP, which prepares small cohorts of marginalized students for acceptance at elite colleges, New Castle County Goes to College’s focus is broader and extremely accessible.

    For example, some of the funds are being used to produce the one-hour “College Knowledge” TV show on DETV, airing on Channel 28 on Tuesdays at 7:30 and streaming on DETV’s Youtube channel.

    This week’s episode discusses college affordability.

    Students can also text TeenSHARP at 302-581-8114 to receive updates and “nudges” to make sure they’re staying on track in their college application process, a service available in both English and in Spanish through a partnership with Ventas Latinas Delaware.

    The program has also been able to contract 1440 Films to produce some soon-to-be-released videos, in a full circle of sorts: TeenSharp was selected by 1440 Films as its annual Project Giveback pro bono project, a film featured at this year’s TeenSHARP Signing Day.

    “[The grant] was cool, because we would never be able to afford 1440,” said Alleyne.

    TeenSHARP was also able to help out some of the families in the program by hiring parents and students to do outreach.

    An all-virtual program that aims to uplift marginalized students has its challenges, Alleyne says, but he sees his students pivot and adapt as needed.

    “There is a digital divide, but there’s also what I call digital resilience,” he said. “One of our students, Daniela, lives in a trailer, in close quarters. She’s been accepted into prestigious programs that were now virtual. We’ll do whatever it takes to support you, but we recognize that the world is unkind and requires resilience.”

    While the initial county-funded College Knowledge initiative ends at the end of the month, Alleyne hopes to continue on with it, by obtaining sponsors for the DETV show and other projects. If you’re interested in sponsoring, donating or volunteering as a tutor or mentor, go to TeenSHARP’s Make a Difference page. Students interested in accessing College Knowledge resources should fill out the sign-up form.

  • December 09, 2020 2:14 PM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 3, 2020 bHolly Quinn Technical.ly) -  Jordan Bonner, a University of Cambridge graduate from Middletown, has been named the DCS program director and community liaison. 

    Delaware College Scholars (DCS), a college prep program for high-achieving, under-resourced public high school students, has a new program director and community liaison.

    Jordan Bonner attended St. Andrew’s School in Middletown before earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology at Wesleyan University and his master’s degree in psychology and education University of Cambridge in England this past spring,

    Bonner will direct the three-week summer residential portion of the DCS program, manage community partnerships, and serve as a resource for freshman and sophomore college students.

    Bonner was recently selected to serve as a National College Attainment Network advocacy fellow where he will engage in national policy discussion surrounding the Pell Grant, and has been selected for the 2021 Leadership Delaware class. He is also serving as the first research associate at Virginia Union University’s Center for the Study of HBUs, where he focuses on connecting HBCU education scholars for collaboration to “rewrite the narrative.”

    “Jordan is the embodiment of what we want for our program,” said DCS Executive Director Dr. Tony Alleyne. “To have his drive, energy, innovation and dedication full-time has already increased the capacity of DCS to a new height which is exciting for all of our scholars — past, current and future.”

  • December 02, 2020 11:50 AM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (November 24, 2020 by Rachel Lundberg WCNC.com) - Bank of America is a Philanthropy Delaware Member. This move is part of a $1B, 4-year commitment to advance racial equity and economic mobility at HBCUs, community colleges.

    Bank of America selected 21 community colleges and historically Black colleges and universities, including Central Piedmont Community College, to give $1 million over the course of the next four years.

    "We were lucky enough to win the day and get an investment to Central Piedmont," Bank of America market president for Charlotte Charles Bowman told WCNC Charlotte. 

    Bowman said the money and collaboration are all part of a program to connect students of color to jobs.

    "Not only is this a great thing for Central Piedmont, which is a huge resource here for us, but it’s also a win for the students who are going to come through the program and a win for employers who will get job-ready people," Bowman added.

    Bowman believes many best practices will be shared nationwide between the selected schools in order to narrow gaps recognized at CPCC.

    Central Piedmont president Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer said equity is one of the school's strategic goals

    "When we examined our student data, we recognized that in three years, our African-American students were only completing at just around 19%," Dr. Deitemeyer said. "Our Latin students were only at 13%. Yet those students deserve equal access to opportunity and this grant and investment were calling a bridge to careers project."

    This investment from BoA will help CPCC utilize specific resources for these students to stay in school, better highlight career paths and create the foundation needed to have a successful, long-term career.  

    According to Central Piedmont, the road map for how these initiatives will roll out is already underway, and students will begin to see those changes in 2021. 

    The bank told WCNC Charlotte they are very proud to call Charlotte home and hope their efforts to create permanent change will encourage other companies, businesses and people to do the same. 

    "We know that philanthropy alone won’t solve those issues," Bowman said. "We need a lot of people to join in this effort to make Charlotte stronger, better, more vibrant than it was before."

  • December 02, 2020 11:32 AM | Philanthropy Delaware (Administrator)

    (December 1, 2020 by Delaware Business Times) - The Delta Dental Community Care Foundation today announced that it is giving $25,000 to the Food Bank of Delaware. This announcement falls on Giving Tuesday, a global generosity movement that encourages people and organizations to do good, which has deeper resonance amid the challenges presented by COVID-19.

    “As a result of the pandemic, food insecurity rates and reliance on food banks are skyrocketing like never before,” said Kenzie Ferguson, vice president for foundation and corporate social responsibility for Delta Dental of California and its affiliates in a statement. “Fighting food insecurity is not only the right thing to do for our communities during these trying times, but it also aligns with our mission to promote oral health.”

    Dental caries, or the disease that causes tooth decay, has been linked to food insecurity – a disruption in food intake or eating patterns due to a lack of resources – in numerous studies. Delta Dental of California and its affiliates, through the Foundation, employee support and corporate giving, have strengthened food banks across its enterprise states for years. As the economic crisis caused by the pandemic continues, it became clear it was time to increase that support exponentially.

    “We are so thankful for Delta Dental’s incredible generosity,” said Food Bank of Delaware Chief Development Officer Larry Haas in a statement. “Thanks to this donation, we will be able to provide 75,000 meals to Delawareans struggling to make ends meet. The pandemic has negatively impacted so many of our neighbors. Prior to the pandemic, approximately 121,000 Delawareans experienced food insecurity. Now more than 164,000 are oftentimes uncertain where their next meal will come from. Thanks to generous partners like Delta Dental, we are able to ensure that no Delawarean goes without.”

    Today the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation is announcing $2.5 million in funding to food banks across 15 states and Washington, D.C.  This is in addition to $11 million in previously awarded grants in response to COVID-19. Foundation support in 2020 totals nearly $15 million, including $70,000 to nonprofits in Delaware.

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