Callahan Foundation Announces 2020 Spring Grant Recipients

The Callahan Foundation is pleased to announce it has awarded $216,000 to 26 Northeast Ohio nonprofits and initiatives in its Spring 2020 grant cycle. These organizations embody the Callahan Foundation’s mission, demonstrating superior leadership and creating value for those in need through programs in higher education, the arts and social services.

Birthing Beautiful Communities: Birthing Beautiful Communities is an innovative organization that supports pregnant women at highest risk for infant mortality. A first-time grant recipient, the organization was founded and is operated mainly by Black women to address and improve systemic structures that lead to Cleveland infants dying at high rates (especially Black newborns, which face an 18.1% infant mortality rate). The organization was awarded $3,500 for its prenatal education and childbirth programs, which use culture, education, advocacy, support and engagement (CEASE) to holistically support more than 400 clients to deliver full-term, healthy babies and achieve equitable birth outcomes.

Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland: The Boys and Girls Clubs of Northeast Ohio’s (BGCNEO) mission is to inspire and enable youth who are most in need to reach their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. BGCNEO serves more than 9,000 youth across four counties in 39 locations. In 2020, BGCNEO was awarded $3,500 in continued support for their dance instruction and exposure programming, which gives low-income youth similar chances to learn and explore interests as their higher-income peers, along with allowing them to develop social-emotional skills.

Cleveland Clinic: The Cleveland Clinic was awarded $20,000 to help fund initiatives that support the health, well-being, and safety of caregivers on the frontlines of COVID-19 in Northeast Ohio, as well as their families. These frontline caregivers (such as doctors, nurses, and other medical providers) are challenged in unprecedented ways; the Cleveland Clinic’s support initiatives will help to relieve stress, to care for health workers if they fall ill, and to ensure they have all the tools needed to save lives from COVID-19.

Cleveland Orchestra: Each year, the Cleveland Orchestra’s Friday Morning Concerts grow in popularity, bringing 1,600 Cleveland-area high school students to Severance Hall. The Orchestra was awarded $25,000 for subsidization of tickets for high school students to attend the concert series, inspiring and enriching lives through extraordinary musical experiences.

Cleveland Rape Crisis Center (CRCC): CRCC’s mission is to support survivors of rape and sexual abuse, promote healing and prevention, and advocate for social change. For those in the Deaf/Hard of Hearing (HoH) community, outreach and direct services can be even more complicated, because of the isolation created by communication barriers and the culture of the insular community. The first-time grant recipient was awarded $5,000 to provide services to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community to ensure that the population has access to mental healthcare and advocacy services.

Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities (Cuyahoga DD): The Cuyahoga DD supports and empowers people with developmental disabilities to live, learn, work and play in the community, serving over 12,000 people of all ages with developmental disabilities annually. Low expectations, lack of self-advocacy skills, and limited knowledge and experience with post-secondary opportunities prevent many students with developmental disabilities (DD) from pursuing post-secondary education and careers in the competitive workforce. A first-time grant recipient, the Cuyahoga DD was awarded $3,500 towards their job-readiness programming.

The Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP): The Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP) stretches across 33,000 acres running 20 miles along the Cuyahoga River valley between Akron and Cleveland. The Conservancy’s mission is to enrich lives and communities by inspiring use, appreciation, and support of CNVP and to ensure its preservation. The organization was awarded $5,000 to provide scholarships to children from underrepresented families to attend “All the Rivers Run,” the Cuyahoga Valley Environmental Education Center’s residential program. “All Rivers Run” provides a first, real-life exposure to national parks, and the ecosystems and cultural history the parks protect, for 2,297 students.

CWRU Inamori Ethics Prize Events: The Callahan Foundation supports the Inamori Ethics Prize events by awarding $20,000 and honoring the year’s recipient. The Inamori Ethics Prize honors those who embody ethical leadership, and exemplify founder Dr. Kazuo Inamori’s philosophy: “people have no higher calling than to serve the greater good of humankind and society.” The 2020 Inamori Ethics Prize recipient is Judge Silvia Alejandra Fernández de Gurmendi, a leading figure in international justice, humanitarian law, and human rights, and the first woman to serve as president of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center (DVCAC): DVCAC’s mission is to provide services that foster safety and healing to those affected by child abuse and domestic violence, and to prevent abuse through education, advocacy and systemic change. The agency has been a leader in Cuyahoga County for over 43 years, addressing issues of violence and abuse through programs for crisis and early intervention, helping people heal from abuse and have healthier relationships, community education to better understand the dynamics and warning signs of abusive relationships, and training and advocacy for systems to better respond to family violence. The organization was awarded $10,000 for general operating support.

Downtown Cleveland Alliance (DCA): The DCA’s mission is to make Downtown Cleveland the most compelling place to live, work, and play in the region. Now in its 14th year of providing services and leadership to all stakeholders in the downtown community, DCA remains the only organization wholly dedicated to the current and future vitality of Downtown Cleveland. DCA was awarded $10,000 towards their SEEDS Workforce Readiness Program, which will allow DCA to provide work experience and training to the clients of a local mens’ homeless shelter, and ultimately help them overcome significant barriers to employment and housing.

Family Promise of Greater Cleveland: Family Promise is a family homeless shelter that offers an individualized, outcomes-based approach to helping homeless families achieve a more stable future. Its mission is to inspire and empower homeless families to transform their lives, become self-sufficient and fulfill their promise. A first-time grant recipient, Family Promise was awarded $7,500 to support the shelter and stabilizing services that it provides for approximately 95 homeless families a year.

Great Lakes Science Center (GLSC): The GLSC was awarded $7,500 for their Cleveland Creates program for 6th and 7th grade students (CC6 & CC7) in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, as well as their Creating Connections program for 8th grade students – developed because of the success of collaboration brought about by CC6 and CC7. The Cleveland Creates program is a strategic priority built on GLSC’s STEM expertise, which uses Inquiry-Based Learning and interactive projects to challenge students and encourage creativity, experimentation, perseverance, and self-efficacy.

Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity: Cleveland Habitat connects families who earn 30-80% of the area median income ($22,116-$58,956 for a family of four) to homeownership, providing zero-interest mortgages, training, and partnership. The organization, a first-time grant recipient, was awarded $5,000 to support home construction for the Buckeye-Woodhill neighborhood transformation project. Throughout the project’s duration, Cleveland Habitat plans to construct 40 new houses and rehab 10 vacant homes in the neighborhood, and provide exterior repairs for 50-75 existing residents.

The Haven Home: The Haven Home works to eliminate family homelessness by providing emergency shelter to women and children experiencing homelessness and awaiting a bed at local family shelters. Families stay at The Haven Home until a bed opens at a family shelter, where they are transferred and then receive assistance with housing, education and life skills. A first-time grant recipient, The Haven Home was awarded $5,000 towards its Volunteer Program, where 150 volunteers execute on the organization’s mission by providing meals and snacks to families, sorting donations, caretaking, and hosting events, college prep, and job readiness workshops.

Hiram House: The Hiram House enriches the lives of youth by providing an opportunity to live, play and learn in an environment that is racially, ethnically and socioeconomically diverse through programs that enhance a child’s independence, creativity, leadership development and social interaction. A first-time grant recipient, Hiram House was awarded $1,000 towards subsidized camping costs for children living below the poverty line, ensuring they have a positive and enriching summer experience.

Intermuseum Conservation Association: ICA-Art Conservation’s (ICA) mission is to preserve and conserve art and material culture for the present and the future. ICA serves museums, libraries, historical societies, government agencies, corporations, and private individuals in caring for their art, historical, and cultural objects and collections, as well as thousands of participants of all ages and backgrounds though education outreach programs. ICA was awarded $25,000 in general operating funds to staff conservators and the Director of Education and Outreach as they work to provide expertise and educational opportunities to allied professionals, students, and members of the public.

Joseph’s Home: The mission of Joseph’s Home is to provide a nurturing, caring environment for men without resources who have acute medical needs, helping them heal and achieve independence. As the only medical respite provider in Northeast Ohio, the organization aids homeless men 18 and older experiencing medical conditions who are too sick or unstable to live on the streets but well enough to be discharged from the hospital. A first-time grant recipient, Joseph’s Home was awarded $1,000 to help purchase an electronic medical record system.

Karamu House: The mission of Karamu House is to produce professional theatre, provide arts education, and present community programs for all people while honoring the African-American experience. Karamu furthers this vision by delivering culturally-responsive arts education programs and services for youth and life-long learners, particularly in the Fairfax neighborhood. The organization was awarded $5,000 to support Karamu’s Arts Academy, which offers numerous benefits for the physical, emotional, mental, and academic well-being of children.

Kinnect: Kinnect’s mission is to transform values, beliefs, and actions to achieve permanency for all children in the shortest time possible. The children and families Kinnect serves often struggle with generational substance abuse, homelessness, incarceration, and other challenges, which result in safety concerns about their children. Kinnect was awarded $5,000 towards organizational infrastructure to support the growing scope and scale of services for families and children.

Lake Erie Ink: Lake Erie Ink (LEI) is a writing space that facilitates high-quality, out-of-school creative writing workshops and in-school project-based programs to improve youth’s access to the arts. LEI reaches more than 3,000 youth in Cleveland, encouraging critical thinking and teaching literacy skills that can be utilized throughout a student’s school career and into adulthood. LEI was awarded $3,500 for general operating support to aid their mission of providing creative expression opportunities and academic support to youth in the Greater Cleveland community.

The Legal Aid Society: The Legal Aid Society was awarded $20,000 towards their “Access to Education” program, which helps to remove barriers to success for low-income students so children can fully engage and participate in school by solving legal problems within and outside the school setting.

Nature Center of Shaker Lakes: The Nature Center was awarded $5,000 for their Applied Science for Kids (ASK!) program, an educational initiative launched in partnership with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District to help connect children to nature while improving their academic performance – now in its eighth year. As the organization’s largest educational program, ASK! serves over 5,000 students each year and is central to the Center’s mission to conserve a natural area, connect the Cleveland community with nature, and inspire environmental stewardship.

Scranton Road Ministries: Scranton Road Ministries was awarded $7,500 for their Youth Jobs Partnership (YJP). Youth Jobs Partnership (YJP) is an outcomes-driven workforce development initiative that provides evidence-based job training and placement services. In 2020, the program will provide 475 traditionally under-served Cleveland young adults with best practice job training, and help participants transition into sustainable continuing education and career pathways.

Shooting Without Bullets: Shooting Without Bullets uses artistic activism to shift culture, policy, and perspective around issues of social justice affecting Black and Brown youth in the arts and society. The organization engages in cultural production, providing arts and social justice education, programming and experiential learning to youth, and advocating with and for those at the core of SWB’s mission.  The organization was awarded $5,000 towards general operating funds.

Thea Bowman Center: The Thea Bowman Center’s mission is to affirm and sustain the strength of the people of Mt. Pleasant in a trusting environment that promotes health and well-being through education and resources. The Mt. Pleasant community in Cleveland is made up of adults, families and seniors all with incomes below 150% of the federal poverty level. The organization was awarded $5,000 toward their Senior Outreach Connection program, supporting a program assistant who will help engage African American males in senior programming.

Towards Employment: Towards Employment empowers people to achieve and maintain self-sufficiency through employment. Two-thirds of individuals served by Towards Employment have had no post-secondary education, and half of this group have not completed high school. Two thirds have criminal backgrounds. The organization was awarded a $5,000 grant towards their Career Pathway program, which enhances the economic mobility of over 400 low-income individuals and their families by providing industry-informed skills training with wrap-around services and a clear pathway to career advancement.