grantmaking

From the cohort: Stax Music Academy

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by Adrianna Christmas I am extremely honored and grateful to have been a part of MMI’s first Institute for Nonprofit Excellence cohort. The yearlong experience has been extremely impactful to my organization and my growth as a leader. It offered much more than funding. It was a brilliant model that provided training, an executive coach, […]

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Cohort one, year one: INE in action

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by Doug Waddill There are invisible lines everywhere we go.  There are boundaries of cities, states, and counties that are real, but they cannot be seen with the naked eye.  There are more figurative “lines” that occur as well.  For example, when one moves from hungry to full or from a run to a sprint.  […]

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Our strategy: introducing the Institute for Nonprofit Excellence

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by Kiesha Davis With a multitude of challenges, the nonprofit sector working with community to support those needs are often pushed beyond their own capacity to do so. Sector leaders, and those all to often focused on serving communities of color, are routinely faced with a barrage of competing interests calling for their attention and […]

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#SaveTheNEA – MMI’s guide for support

by Deron Hall For more than 50 years, the NEA has been tasked with ensuring arts-based funding across every congressional district in the United States. This year was no different, with $148 Million allocated to arts and culture programs across the nation through state arts agencies, regional arts agencies, and grants directly from the National […]

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Visible Community Music School at Su Casa

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by VCMS Staff At Visible Community Music School, we’ve just finished our first semester working with kids in the Berclair/Graham neighborhoods through a partnership with Su Casa Family Ministries.  With the help of Su Casa staff, Tim Jewett and Ceci Fortier, we were able to give piano and guitar lessons to 15 eager and excited students […]

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The real work of collaboration

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by Doug Waddill Ever since the dawn of the motivational poster, we have been inundated with clichés about how working together will make us stronger.  I know right now you are picturing the rowboat on the water with the bold letter caption underneath reading “TEAM — Together Everyone Achieves More,” the framed quote of “Teamwork […]

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Untapped potential

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by Kiesha Davis Do you ever think of how much young people could accomplish if we listened to them empathetically? I mean, really listen? Take for example the traditional dynamic of funder and grantee relationships. The prevailing practice in the philanthropic community is to play in to the position of power with grantees, often with […]

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Q&A with Alberto Mejia of Creative Action

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MMI: Let’s start with a bit of background on Creative Action. Tell me about the organization’s work, a little about the history and how/when you became involved. Alberto Mejia: Creative Action’s mission is to spark the emotional, social and academic development of young people through cultural arts and creativity. Owning the fact that I’m relatively […]

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Angel Street tackles after-school transportation challenges

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What began as a small children’s choir for a women’s Christmas event is now a fully operational after-school music-mentoring program. Angel Street serves girls ages 8-18 through musical performance training, songwriting, production, private music lessons and more. The all-girl environment provides a safe place for participants to share their voice both inward and outward. With […]

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Transforming Arts Education – Center-Staging Blackness, Teaching Artists & Philanthropy

By Justin Laing & Sister I’Asia Thomas In Pittsburgh there’s a grantmaking program sponsored by The Heinz Endowments called the Transformative Arts Process (TAP) building the field of folks who work at the intersection of African American neighborhoods, arts, culture and youth. In that spirit of field building, Sister I’Asia and I write this post […]

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