Cleveland Foundation Announces $16.2 Million in Grants for 1st Quarter

Release Date: 03.28.2012

The board of directors of the Cleveland Foundation has authorized $16.2 million in grants to local nonprofit organizations for programs in public education reform, youth development, economic transformation, and other vital areas.

Among those receiving funding this quarter:

Economic Transformation

The board authorized a grant of $1.75 million to Case Western Reserve University for continued support of its Great Lakes Energy Institute (GLEI) within the School of Engineering. GLEI focuses on research and education initiatives to support a transition to sustainable energy. This grant will specifically fund electrical grid research and education efforts. 

“The Cleveland Foundation’s support of the Great Lakes Energy Institute goes back to 2007,” said Robert Eckardt, executive vice president at the Cleveland Foundation. “Our initial grant enabled the creation and launch of GLEI. We recognize the importance of the institute’s role as a national leader in developing new energy technology and growing the region’s economy.”

Also in support of Cleveland’s economic transformation, the board awarded $750,000 to BioEnterprise Corp. for the continued development of the Health Tech Corridor and the regional biomedical industry. 

Public Education Reform

A grant of  $700,000 will support the portfolio of new and innovative schools strategy for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD),  a strategy endorsed by Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and CMSD CEO Eric Gordon. The overall goal of the plan is to triple the number of Cleveland students enrolled in high-performing schools and eliminate failing schools by 2018.

Earlier this month, the George Gund Foundation also approved $700,000 for this portfolio strategy. Over the past five years, the two foundations have jointly allocated more than $15 million in grants for the CMSD and the development of high-quality charter schools.

Youth Development

The board authorized two separate grants in support of MyCom, short for My Commitment, My Community, the youth development initiative that serves Cuyahoga County children from kindergarten through college.

MyCom grants:

  • Neighborhood Leadership Institute is the MyCom lead agency for neighborhood engagement. The institute was awarded $825,000 to develop a neighborhood engagement strategy for each of the eight MyCom inner city neighborhoods, specific to that neighborhood’s youth development needs.
  • Youth Opportunities Unlimited  received $500,000 to support the MyCom summer jobs program for youth in MyCom neighborhoods. This grant will fund 375 jobs. The Cleveland Foundation funding, along with City of Cleveland and business community support, will make possible a total of 825 jobs this summer.

Other Grants

Among the other grants awarded this quarter:

  • $200,000 to Hattie Larlham Community Living  to establish an innovative vocational training program for adults with disabilities. The organization has set up a number of training programs throughout the Northeast Ohio area, including Hattie’s Doggie Day Care and Boarding. This grant supports the establishment of the first Cleveland-area pet care and boarding operation, to be located on Brookpark Road in Cleveland. Two existing sites operate in Akron and Twinsburg.
  • $200,000 to the Positive Education Program  to relocate a day treatment center to better serve the most behaviorally challenged students in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. The services of a current center in Lakewood will move to the former Margaret Ireland Elementary School. This grant will fund renovation of the school building for this purpose.
  • $1 million to Ideastream  to support expanded health programming on WCPN and WVIZ through the Donald J. Goodman and Ruth Weber Goodman Fund of the Cleveland Foundation.


Established in 1914, the Cleveland Foundation is the world’s first community foundation and one of the largest today, with assets of $1.8 billion and 2011 grants of $80 million. Through the generosity of our donors, the foundation improves the lives of Greater Clevelanders by building community endowment, addressing needs through grantmaking, and providing leadership on vital issues. The foundation tackles the community’s vital issues – economic transformation, public-school improvement, youth development, neighborhood revitalization, and arts advancement – and responds to the community’s needs.

For more information on the Cleveland Foundation, please visit