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Cleveland Neighborhood Safety Fund launched, advisory board set

First of its kind $10 million donor-advised fund will support evidence-based interventions

Release Date: 10.4.2023

Cleveland — Today, Mayor Justin M. Bibb, the Cleveland Foundation and community partners announced the advisory committee and launched the application process for the new City of Cleveland Neighborhood Safety Fund. The $10 million fund is housed at the Cleveland Foundation and was seeded in July with American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) money from the City (Ord. 486-2023).  

The fund will provide grants for community-driven, evidence-informed programming serving Cleveland residents that address the root causes of violence under the guidance of a nine-person advisory committee. Through a public Request for Proposals (RFP) process, this group will recommend grant funding to nonprofits and/or government agencies working to enhance safety across the city.  

“This first-of-its-kind fund is a unique opportunity to not only address violence in the short term, but to look for longer term, holistic solutions,” said Mayor Bibb. “The members of the advisory committee understand the importance of this work and are committed to working together to move the city forward.” 

The members of the nine-person committee are:  

Community Appointees: 

  • Habeebah Grimes, Mental health professional 
  • Yvonne Pointer, Survivor and victim advocate 
  • Tre’Vonte Roey, Hoops After Dark participant 

Cleveland Mayoral Appointees: 

  • Joyce Pan Huang, Director of City Planning 
  • Sonya Pryor-Jones, Chief of Youth & Family Success 
  • Angela Shute-Woodson, Director of Community Relations & Senior Advisor, Community and Government Affairs 

Cleveland City Council Appointees: 

  • Stephanie D. Howse-Jones, Ward 7 Councilwoman 
  • Danny Kelly, Ward 11 Councilman 
  • Richard A. Starr, Ward 5 Councilman 

The overarching goal of the Neighborhood Safety Fund is to support programs and organizations that target the root causes of violence, particularly among young people. The grants will align with the City’s multi-year comprehensive approach to violence prevention and will be made to eligible 501(c)3 organizations. 

“We applaud the City of Cleveland for launching the Cleveland Neighborhood Safety Fund and for its efforts to scale safety solutions that stop the cycle of crime. We all know the causes of crime. By investing in proven prevention interventions, the city will grow the building blocks for community safety,” said Shakyra Diaz, Chief of Federal Advocacy for the Alliance for Safety and Justice. 

Recently, the committee prepared for the RFP launch and allocation of the first $1 million in grantmaking by the end of 2023. The plan is to allocate $1 million for each of the first three years of the fund, then 5 percent of the fund balance each year over the life of the fund. 

“I hear it from my constituents and my fellow council members every day: the violence needs to stop,” said Blaine Griffin, Cleveland City Council President. “I’m grateful to the members of the community, the mayoral appointees and the councilmembers who have stepped up to help tackle this extremely difficult issue confronting our community right now.” 

Applications for first-round funding will be open from Oct. 9 through Nov. 15. An informational session for prospective grantees will be held via zoom on Oct. 16 at 1:00 p.m. Click here to register. 

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