Strategic Philanthropy Class Announces Winner of $10,000 Grant
GREEN BAY — Over the past four years, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Strategic Philanthropy class has awarded $45,000 to viable organizations dedicated to an urgent need in the Brown County area. Each year, these funds are made possible by a grant from the Learning by Giving Foundation founded by Doris Buffet.
This year’s recipient is Howe Elementary School. Howe displayed what the UWGB students perceived as the best initiative to promote literacy among children in our area while incorporating an arts component into the curriculum. Students appreciated the school’s collaboration with the Howe Community Resource Center to enable disadvantaged children to continue reading during the summer. The students observed that Howe has a well- trained and dedicated staff with the ability to handle the challenges presented by such an endeavor. The class also congratulates two other finalists — the YMCA of Greater Green Bay and the Green Bay Boys and Girls Club.
“This year’s class ‘pushed the envelope’ by encouraging applicants to be creative, and asking that they integrate authentic arts experiences with literacy instruction,” says Prof. Lora Warner, who teaches the Strategic Philanthropy class. “We were very pleased with the response. There is growing recognition of the multiple benefits that come from kids being involved with music, visual, and performing arts.”
Throughout the semester, UWGB students researched topics such as addictions, declining water quality, cutbacks in opportunities for kids to participate in the arts, and the achievement gap. They developed a request for proposal, reviewed proposed projects, and site-visited three area organizations. Students worked toward consensus to choose the eventual recipient, Howe Elementary School.
The majority of children living in inner city Green Bay do not read proficiently at early ages, setting them up for future academic challenges. The public is often unaware that there is a large gap in reading achievement between underprivileged children (many of whom are racial/ethnic minority students) and their economically better-off counterparts. This year’s philanthropy class studied this so-called “achievement gap” and agreed that their $10K should address this important community need.
“While a $10k gift can go a long way, more help is certainly needed,” said student Mark Petroski. “There are many organizations in the area which tackle the issues of literacy and instruction in the arts for school aged children here in Brown County. We urge you to pick up the phone or your laptop and get involved. A little can go a long way.” More information can be found on the UWGB students’ blog: https://uwgbphilanthropy2016.wordpress.com/.
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– Photos by Dan Moore, Marketing and University Communication