Working To Enhance The Quality Of Life
In Baltimore And In Maryland.

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Past Grants

The following grants are in excess of $5,000 and were awarded in 2020.

Education

Baltimore Corps

$79,000
Baltimore, MD

Relaunched in 2019, the Baltimore City Mayoral Fellowship recruits a cohort of 10-15 graduate and undergraduate interns to work on executive-level projects in City agencies and departments over 10 weeks during the summer. Baltimore Corps, in partnership with the Mayor's Chief of Staff's office, selects, places and oversees programming for the Fellowship, including weekly speaker sessions, community service and a final symposium. The Fellows program aims for 100% completion, 90% level of satisfaction, and hiring of 3 candidates within a year of program completion.  Fellows will reflect the demographics of Baltimore City.

Baltimore Education Research Consortium (BERC)

$200,000
Baltimore, MD

BERC pursues long- and short-term data analysis and research, and subsequently interprets and shares the findings with Baltimore City Public Schools, community leaders, and other stakeholders. This grant will strengthen BERC’s core operating budget, which will support the onboarding of a new executive director and maintain the robust data archives that are the foundation of BERC’s work. 

Baltimore Kids Chess League, Inc.

$40,000
Cockeysville, MD

Sponsored by the Abell Foundation and Baltimore City Public Schools since 2004, Baltimore Kids Chess League (BKCL) offers an academic extracurricular program that serves more than 150 children from kindergarten to 12th grade in 21 schools.  Due to Covid, BKCL has migrated to a new virtual format, using the innovative “Think Like A King” chess software to move students through chess strategy sessions, assigning a chess rating based on each student’s level of play, and effectively matching opponents with an equivalent level of chess skill.  Teams practice weekly under the auspices of trained chess coaches and compete in novice, local, state, and national chess tournaments sponsored by the United States Chess Federation. 

Baltimore Urban Debate League

$26,000
Baltimore, MD

The Baltimore Urban Debate League (BUDL), a national initiative, has reintroduced debate into Baltimore’s public school classrooms over the last two decades as a strategy to engage and inspire students from our city’s most under-resourced schools. BUDL has reached thousands of students from 4th grade to 12th grade, and changed their personal and academic trajectories by helping them discover their voice and reach their potential through debate. This grant will support the expansion of the Debate League to 53 schools (including 11 high schools) and serve over 8,500 students in the 2019-2020 school year.

Baltimore's Promise, Fiscally Sponsored by Fund for Educational Excellence

$275,000
Baltimore, MD

The Summer Funding Collaborative (SFC) is an aligned fund that directs resources to high-quality summer programs for low-income children in Baltimore City. In 2020, the SFC included 13 public and private funders that, collectively, distributed $3.5 million to 74 programs, funding a projected 9,500 seats. This grant includes funding for between 15-20 nonprofit organizations that will be determined in late winter 2021 through the SFC’s request for proposals as well as a fee for Baltimore’s Promise, the SFC’s administrative backbone.

Baltimore's Promise, Fiscally Sponsored by Fund for Educational Excellence

$75,000
Baltimore, MD

Launched by a diverse group of civic leaders in 2014, Baltimore's Promise is a collaboration to create a cradle to career pipeline to success for youth in Baltimore City by coordinating strategy, identifying quality programs, establishing shared outcomes, building public will, and advancing good policy. In Year 6, the work will focus on the expanded implementation of the Grads2Careers occupational training scholarships for graduates from Baltimore City Public Schools, a demonstration of the new Youth Data System, a planning and implementation effort around Young Adult Literacy, a landscape analysis of out-of school programming and a continuation of the Summer Funding Collaborative.  Baltimore's Promise also is serving as the backbone for a $4.3 million fund to support food and other needs in Baltimore as a result of the COVID pandemic.

Carnegie Institution for Science

$25,000
Baltimore, MD

BioEYES is a week-long, hands-on biology unit delivered by Carnegie Institution science outreach educators and co-teaching by City Schools science teachers using live fish as subjects. The program meets the Common Core science standards, and it demonstrates—and prepares teachers for—a student-centered lab approach to science instruction. BioEYES allows Baltimore City 8th grade students and teachers access to the world of high caliber, Nobel Prize-level science. In a recent study (Shuda, Butler, Farber, and Vary, 2015), the authors found significant gains in students’ knowledge and attitudes towards science as a result of BioEYES.
It is expected that up to 2,500 8th grade students and 45 science teachers will experience BioEYES in the 2020/2021 school year via online or in person instruction with a goal to produce 8 new Master Teachers.

Digital Harbor Foundation, Fiscally Sponsored by Fund for Educational Excellence

$38,684
Baltimore, MD

COVID-19 has exposed the lack of both devices, and as importantly, connectivity in the homes of Baltimore City school children. Coordinated by the Fund for Educational Excellence, this grant is part of a City Schools Tech Initiative to pilot the use of mesh-internet installed on the roofs of four high-poverty schools. These cost-effective access nodes tap into school broadband and provide free internet to homes in a four-to-eight-block radius of the school, serving an anticipated 820 students.

Fund for Educational Excellence

$40,000
Baltimore, MD

The Fund for Educational Excellence is a Baltimore-based education intermediary that supports public education through its fundraising and collaboration with Baltimore City Public Schools, community-based research, convening stakeholders, and serving as a fiscal sponsor to education non-profits. This grant will enable the Fund to produce a Transportation report and act on its recommendations in CTE and School Choice, to raise federal and national funding for City Schools, to stewart $25 million as fiscal sponsor to 20 non-profits, and to recognize excellence among school principals. 

Fund for Educational Excellence

$20,000
Baltimore, MD

The Abell-funded Baltimore City Schools report,  "Preparing All Students for Economic and Career Success" (2019) uncovered issues and made recommendations for improving the school system's Career and Technical Education program. As a working group created a four-year Master Plan for CTE, a number of questions arose that required more data collection and analysis. This grant has enabled City Schools to contract with Project Evident to analyze CTE coursework, facilities, teacher recruitment/training and student career interest. Final CTE program recommendations will enable the Master Plan to be complete by Summer 2020.

Green Street Academy, Inc.

$150,000
Baltimore, MD

Green Street Academy, a Baltimore City Charter school for 870 6th-9th grade students, plans to construct and program a 7,000 square foot state-of-the-art STEM Innovation Center facility. This Center is envisioned to be the hub of the school, bringing together CTE programs in Construction, Design and Health, internships and jobs, dual enrollment, college counseling, and collaborative space for school day and afterschool applied learning/making and entrepreneurship programming. The Innovation Lab is expected to open in January 2021, and will serve over 600 students in afterschool, internship and summer programs. 

GreenLight Fund

$250,000
Boston, MA

With the support of over 25 local and national funders, GreenLight Fund will launch GreenLight Baltimore as the 10th city in its growing network. Over the next five years, GreenLight Fund Baltimore will bring 3-4 social innovation non-profits into the city with the potential to fill gaps in Baltimore's social service landscape and make a significant, measurable impact on the lives of low-income residents. GreenLight embeds itself in the local community, engages local partners to identify critical gaps, researches proven nonprofit programs, and then launches and manages selected programs to achieve impact in the Baltimore region.

Improving Education

$75,000
Baltimore, MD

The Abell Foundation has supported the work of Jarrod Bolte and his non-profit, Improving Education, over the last four years as they use improvement science to change the way schools work to improve reading outcomes for children. In 2020/21, City Schools has contracted with Improving Education to launch and faciliate a Networked Improvement Community (NIC) of 19 schools to assist teachers, administrators, and community providers in redesigning instructional and support mechanisms to improve early literacy outcomes for students from K through fifth grade. Working with 40 Literacy Coaches, 200 teachers and 6,000 students, Improving Education will share its literacy protocols in school innovation and early literacy instructional design.  Abell Foundation funds will enable Improving Education to continue some deep coaching work in the 19 schools to inform future practice. Improving Education expects to increase the number of participating students in grades K-5 meeting grade level reading proficiency by 15 percentage points from the beginning to end of year.

NorthBay Education

$200,000
North East, MD

NorthBay Academy is a sixteen-week, residential educational program provided to 300 Baltimore City Public Schools sixth graders during the first semester of the 2020 school year as a response to the Covid pandemic.  Students attending NorthBay Academy will be provided hands-on science instruction, character-building activities, teamwork and challenge based activities, and individualized reading tutoring, alongside their typical routine of virtual instruction provided by their classroom teachers.  The Academy is designed to accelerate student learning and provide educational stability for students whose instruction may be impeded due to the challenges of virtual learning.

Reading Partners

$40,000
Baltimore, MD

Since 2012, Reading Partners has provided high quality literacy tutoring by recruiting, training and supervising comunity volunteers to serve children in Baltimore City elementatary schools. With the support of 650 volunteers and 29 Americorps members, Reading Partners will serve up to 600 K-4th grade studentsin 16 Title I schools  in the 2020/21 school year. While that instruction may be virutal, in person, or a hybrid, Reading Partners expects that 81% of tutored students will meet their primary individualized end of year literacy growth goals.

Safe Alternative Foundation for Education, Inc.

$10,000
Baltimore, MD

The SAFE Center youth facility opened in 2015 in order to provide West Baltimore middle school students with 1,250 hours of supervised, afterschool, weekend, and summer programming annually.  Focusing on learning opportunities in the areas of literacy, STEAM, and health and fitness, the SAFE Center works primarily with students from Franklin Square Elementary/Middle School.  The current Abell Foundation grant is designed to address the challenges with remote learning by establishing an in-person learning pod for 22 middle school students. This learning pod provides students with access to the resources they need to attend school on-line as well as receive assistance from SAFE staff who can provide classwork assistance, monitor work completion, and provide a structured learning environment for the students.

STEM Champions of Baltimore Inc.

$30,000
Catonsville, MD

Over the past seven years, STEM Champions of Maryland has developed as a staging ground to prepare 375 students in 32 middle and high schools throughout the city for competition in numerous STEM based events as a part of the National Science Olympiad competition, the largest broad-based STEM competition in Baltimore.  STEM Champions of Maryland trains teacher coaches to provide robust curricula and materials for each of the 18 Science Olympiad activities.  STEM Champions also brings over 200 STEM professionals and volunteers together to work with teachers in afterschool practices and to facilitate the annual Citywide Science Olympiad competition.

Strong Schools Maryland, Fiscally Sponsored by Fund for Educational Excellence

$35,000
Baltimore, MD

Strong Schools Maryland, founded in spring 2017, is an educational advocacy organization with a goal for an adequately funded education system in which virtually all Maryland students graduate on time from high school. Strong Schools is committed to securing the legislative votes to override the gubernatorial veto of the 2020 Blueprint for Maryland’s Future.  Now, working as a permanent organization, Strong Schools will continue its grassroots statewide advocacy to monitor the full implementation of the Kirwan Commission recommendations.  

Teach for America - Baltimore

$125,000
Baltimore, MD

Teach for America: Baltimore has been recruiting and developing teachers and leaders to expand educational opportunities for Baltimore's children growing up in poverty since 1992.  Today, there are 1,200 Teach for America alumni and teachers in Baltimore--80% continue to engage in work impacting low-income communities.This grant will continue TFA's work in 1. recruiting top talent ( 95 new and diverse teachers--over 50% people of color); 2. building leaders in the classroom, schools and City (a total of 20 TFA principals and 3rd year teacher retention rate of 66%) and 3. Connecting TFA network to accelerate educational outcomes in Baltimore (the 2nd year of a new network strategy engaging alumni in collection impact).

The Community School

$20,000
Baltimore, MD

Certified in 2014 as a small non-public diploma-awarding high school, The Community School in Remington has successfully served struggling students who have failed in Baltimore City Public Schools for over 30 years. This storefront school provides up to 22 14-19 year olds with an interdisciplinary academic and mentoring high school program that reinforces basic skills, while individualized instruction builds knowledge and skills for college, competitive employment, and community contribution. Over 40 volunteers support teachers and work individually with students. The Community School boasts a daily attendance above 95% and a college enrollment rate of 65%.

The Ingenuity Project

$370,000
Baltimore, MD

The Abell Foundation launched The Ingenuity Project for advanced math and science in 1994. Today, Ingenuity prepares and launches the next diverse generation of nationally competitive STEM leaders in Baltimore City Schools, serving 830 students in grades 6-12. This grant will enable Ingenuity to expand and improve access to students of color and students living in concentrated poverty by establishing a community-driven vision and systems to produce equitable outcomes for all students, supporting its new middle school program at James McHenry School in West Baltimore, and refining individualized support and STEM enrichment, including the high school practicum experience for all participants. Ingenuity will continue to serve as the exemplary accelerated math and science program that prepares Baltimore City students for selective colleges and STEM careers, demonstrating both excellence and equity.

The Literacy Lab

$75,000
Baltimore, MD

The Literacy Lab employs a professionalized tutoring workforce that provides one-on-one, small group, and whole group literacy interventions to 690 students annually.  A replication of the acclaimed Minnesota Reading Corps, Literacy Lab embeds rigorously trained reading tutors in PreK classrooms and provides 1:1 tutoring in schools to children in Kindergarten through third grade.  Literacy Lab tutoring participants are between 1.5 to 5 times as likely to be on grade level than students who started at the same grade level and received no tutoring.  Approximately 20% of participating students will achieve literacy benchmarks and end the school year on grade level.

The Urban Alliance Foundation, Inc.

$35,000
Washington, DC

The Urban Alliance Foundation (UA) was founded in 1996 in Washington, D.C. with the goal of providing young people with meaningful work experiences and access to better jobs.  The overarching goal of the Urban Alliance is to equip youth to successfully transition to the working world by providing paid internships, mentoring from an adult professional, case management, trainings focused on college and career skills, and post internship wrap around support.  This current Abell Foundation grant will support their CTE program focused on providing internship placements in the area of construction.  In partnership with employers, the Urban Alliance CTE program prepares high school seniors for careers in construction and related industries through sector-based internships, industry training, professional mentoring, and case management.  

TNTP, Inc.

$50,000
New York, NY

TNTP has recruited, prepared and placed an average of 110 non-traditional teachers annually in Baltimore City Public Schools since 1997. Their efforts, both policy and programmatic, to increase the number of high quality teachers of color entering Baltimore City and Maryland public schools have resulted in a pool that is 50% black and 60% people of color. TNTP will continue its policy work at the State level to successfully adopt new Teacher License regulations that will remove certification barriers and advocate for a legislative grant program that will remove financial barriers for teachers of color.

University of Baltimore Foundation

$50,000
Baltimore, MD

The University of Baltimore School of Law Truancy Court Program (TCP) identifies young people who are at risk for delinquency, substance use, gang involvement, and other behavioral problems linked to truancy and school disengagement.  The primary goal of the TCP is to reduce truancy by reconnecting students and their families with their schools in order to break the school-to-prison pipeline.  The holistic approach utilized by the TCP involves multiple components that include mentoring, continual and consistent follow-up and oversight, tutoring, social services referrals, legal guidance, and the powerful presence of a retired judge who leads the effort. 

Urban Teachers

$100,000
Baltimore, MD

With Abell Foundation start-up funding, Urban Teachers launched a new model of teacher preparation in 2009, recruiting outstanding college graduates, training them in a year-long clinical preparation, providing classroom support over four years, and linking their certification to demonstration of effective teaching practices and student learning gains. In summer 2020, Urban Teachers will begin training another 100 new incoming Resident Teachers who co-teach with mentor teachers for the first year of a four-year commitment. This grant will enable Urban Teachers to embark upon a strategic planning process to reaccess and design a new business and financial model that will garner more earned reveue and reduce costs without impacting program quality. This model will further reduce reliance on philanthropy to 20% of the total budget, and reduce the financial burdens on teacher candidates.

In summer 2020, Urban Teachers will begin training another 100 new incoming Resident Teachers who co-teach with mentor teachers for the first year of a four-year commitment.

Youth Baltimore Uprise, Fiscally Sponsored by Bmore Empowered Inc.

$10,000
Baltimore, MD

Youth Baltimore Uprise (YBU) is a nonprofit, mentoring organization operating in West Baltimore.  The program is targeted at building leadership, social awareness, and social emotional skills for thirty middle school aged youth who live in the Sandtown/Winchester neighborhood.  The mentorship component of Youth Baltimore Uprise entails regular connections between the six founding members and the thirty students they support.  Student participants will regularly have guest speakers addressing a range of topics.  Each month, students participate in a field trip, providing an opportunity for hands on learning outside of the community.    

Workforce Development

Baltimore City Health Department, Fiscally Sponsored by Baltimore Civic Fund

$250,000
Baltimore, MD

The Baltimore City Health Department, in partnership with the Mayor's Office of Employment Development (MOED), Baltimore Corps, Jhipiego, and Healthcare Access Maryland, is launching a $12.4 million initiative to control the transmission of COVID-19 through contact tracing and public health education outreach.  The initiative will hire 300 unemployed Baltimore residents and train them as contact tracers and community health workers, who will work for up to eight months, earning $38,000 a year plus benefits.  Those trained will build Baltimore's public health infrastructure, helping to coordinate care for residents needing assistance.  With support from MOED, those trained will be placed into unsubsized employment.  

BioTechnical Institute of Maryland, Inc.

$80,000
Baltimore, MD

Since 1998, with support from the Abell Foundation, BTI has trained over 450 Baltimore City residents as entry-level technicians in the growing bio-pharma industry.  Students first complete BioSTART, BTI’s six-week bridge program, which was started so that BTI could admit students with lower math scores.  Students move on to the Laboratory Associates program, where students continue training for 10 weeks and complete a 100-hour internship.  Of the 40 students to be trained in 2021, BTI estimates that 29 (or 73%) will graduate and of those who graduate, 22 (or 76%) will be placed into research laboratory and manufacturing technician positions, at an average wage of $17/hour.  

BUILD

$125,000
Baltimore, MD

Turnaround Tuesdays is a BUILD jobs initiative in which residents meet at Zion Baptist Church on Tuesday mornings from 9 am to 11 am to receive help in finding employment.  Over 125 people participate in Turnaround Tuesdays each week, completing a 10-week leadership training curriculum that focuses the skills needed to sustain employment.  The jobs movement is working:  last year, 181 people were placed into jobs, earning an average wage of $15 per hour.   According to BUILD, 74% of those placed have remained employed at least a year.  Retention is higher (84%) at anchor institutions such as Johns Hopkins Medicine and the University of Maryland Medical System.  BUILD is establishing an employment pipeline to “good paying jobs” at these and other long-standing large, anchor institution employers, encouraging them to hire people with criminal records.  

Byte Back

$100,000
Washington, DC

Byte Back is a Washington, DC nonprofit organization that trains low-income adults with no computer experience in learning the basic fundamental skills of how to turn on a computer, use a mouse and use Microsoft Office applications.  Byte Back then works step by step with students to build upon those skills, preparing students to earn industry-recognized IT credentials.  Last year, with support from the Abell Foundation, Byte Back expanded its programming to Baltimore.  In 2021, with continued support from Abell, Byte Back plans to enroll 100 Baltimoreans into its classes, with 76 completing.  Byte Back will help 36 graduates who earn IT certifications to obtain careers in IT, tracking their job retention for a year.

CASH Campaign of Maryland

$120,000
Baltimore, MD

The Baltimore CASH Campaign—Creating Assets, Savings, and Hope—was launched in 2001 to increase access to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a powerful work incentive and poverty-alleviation tool, lifting more families out of poverty than any other federal aid program.  Now a program of the CASH Campaign of Maryland, Baltimore CASH plans to serve 7,500 Baltimore residents by operating 15 to 20 free tax preparation sites, continuing its efforts to build high volume sites that can provide quality tax preparation, and asset development services.

Center for Urban Families, Inc.

$300,000
Baltimore, MD

The Center for Urban Families (CFUF) works to strengthen urban communities by helping fathers and families achieve stability and economic succes.  STRIVE Baltimore, the cornerstone of CFUF's programming, is a strict, demanding, three-week workshop that focuses on workplace behavior, appearance, and attitude.  Upon completion of training, STRIVE graduates are placed in jobs, and are followed by STRIVE staff for two years.  Last year,146 participants graduated from STRIVE Baltimore, with 132 graduates (or 90%) being placed into jobs; 70 former graduates were also placed into jobs, bringing the total number of job placements to 202. STRIVE graduates placed in employment earned an average of $13.01 per hour, and 90% remained employed for at least six months.

Civic Works, Inc.

$100,000
Baltimore, MD

The Center for Sustainable Careers (CSC) has built a multi-tiered green career “pathway out of poverty” by training and placing Baltimore City residents in the infastructure remediation and residential energy-efficiency industries.  Across its programs, CSC has maintained an average job placement rate of 93%.  Since 2014, 81% of graduates have remained employed for at least one year.  Over the next year, with funding from the Abell Foundation, CSC will train 80 Baltimore City residents for entry-level positions as well as 24 incumbent workers. .  

Job Opportunities Task Force

$150,000
Baltimore, MD

In January 2006, in partnership with the Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. (ABC), Job Opportunities Task Force (JOTF) launched Project JumpStart, a pre-apprenticeship construction program designed to provide low-income Baltimore City residents with 13 weeks of pre-apprenticeship training.  Since its inception, Project Jumpstart has served over 1,300 Baltimore residents, almost all of whom are African-American men (96%) with a criminal record (75%).  With funding from the Abell Foundation, Project Jumpstart plans to serve 145 new students and maintain its 75% job placement rate.  

Maryland New Directions

$120,000
Baltimore, MD

Maryland New Directions, Inc., (MND) is a private, nonprofit, career counseling and job placement agency that provides occupational skills training, including the Commercial Transportation Careers training program.  MND also provides other employment services, including computer literacy training, walk-in job search and application support and individual job coaching.  Funding from Abell will support MND in assisting more than 425 job seekers in Baltimore.

Mayor’s Office of Employment Development, Fiscally Sponsored by Baltimore Civic Fund

$75,000
Baltimore, MD

The Mayor’s Office of Employment Development (MOED) operates one of the largest summer employment program among larger cities, last year employing 8,600 young people between the ages of 14 and 21 for five weeks.  In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, MOED plans to operate a smaller initiative, employing 4,000 youth in jobs with over 100 non-profit and government partners.  Many youth will work remotely for an average of 20 hours a week for five weeks, earning $11 per hour.

NPower, Inc.

$100,000
Brooklyn, NY

In 2016, with support from the Abell Foundation and others, NPower replicated its IT training program for low-income young adults in Baltimore.  NPower's core training program provides students with 16 weeks of hands-on classroom instruction in hardware and software.  The academic portion focuses on teaching fundamental IT skills, including networking, cloud computing, coding and service management.  Following the classroom instruction, students earn their CompTIA certification and have the option to take additional certificate exams.  NPower participants then enter a seven-week paid internship, working four days per week, while one day is spent in professional development activities in the classroom.  In the coming year, NPower plans to enroll 150 low-income young adults into training, graduating 135 and placing 122 into employment. 

PIVOT, Inc.

$75,000
Baltimore, MD

PIVOT was founded in October 2017 in response to the dramatic gap in services geared towards women in reentry in Baltimore City and the lack of coordinated services specifically targeting workforce development for women. The PIVOT model was designed to establish cooperative relationships between service providers in workforce development, public health, substance abuse treatment and mental health, human services and other supportive services such as legal aid, transportation, clothing, housing, childcare, family reunification, financial education and more.  Funding from the Abell Foundation will support 45 women being served by Pivot during the grant period.

Rose Street Community Center

$300,000
Baltimore, MD

Since February 2000, with support from the Abell Foundation, the Rose Street Community Center (Rose Street) has offered small weekly stipends (no more than $10 a day) to community residents in exchange for participation in daily community cleanups or gang mediation meetings.  Last year, Rose Street served more than 120 people per week. Nearly 20% of those served each week (an average of 22 people) reside in Rose Street’s six transitional houses.  Those residing in the houses participate daily in community cleanups. Once they have secured employment, Rose Street staff assists them in obtaining permanent housing.  Over half of those served each week (approximately 70 people) are high-risk youth ages 15 to 24.  Rose Street holds morning meetings with the youth where the youth identify and de-escalate disputes.  Rose Street also connects the youth to programs and services available in the community.

Rose Street Community Center

$50,000
Baltimore, MD

The Rose Street Community Center, with support from the Abell Foundation, serves over 120 people per week, providing transitional housing for over 20 people a week.   Funding of up to $50,000 will provide rental assistance to Baltimore City crime victims over a period of two years. 

South Baltimore Learning Center

$50,000
Baltimore, MD

South Baltimore Learning Center (SBLC) has provided adult education services for nearly three decades, serving over 700 adult students each year.  Three years ago, with funding from the Abell Foundation, SBLC established an office and classroom at the Regional Skills Training Center in Park Heights.  Working with sector skills training programs, SBLC provided 60 students with remedial instruction in math and reading.  On average, students gained 2.5 levels in reading and 4.0 levels in math. These gains were achieved over an average of 30 hours of instruction.  With continued funding from Abell, SBLC will enroll 81 students into remediation programming, with the goal of 55 (or 68%) achieving the reading and math levels required to enroll in the sector skills training programs.

The Work First Foundation

$200,000
New York, NY

With funding from the Abell Foundation, in 2009, America Works (through its nonprofit Work First Foundation) launched the Baltimore Ex-Offender Reentry Employment Program.  The program provides a two-week-long job-readiness workshop for cohorts of six to seven ex-offenders.  The program targets ex-offenders under 40 years of age, and those who have been recently released from prison or jail.  To date,1,318 ex-offenders have graduated from the two-week training course, with 804 being placed into jobs (a 61% job placement rate).  Participants earned an average of $9.39 at placement, with 65 percent remaining employed for six months or more. Since June 2017, the Baltimore City court system has been referring low-income individuals to the program as they await trial, rather than jailing them because they cannot afford to pay bail.  To date, 305 pretrial defendants have enrolled into the program.  Of those, 227 have gone to trial, with 78 percent experiencing a positive outcome.

Vehicles for Change, Inc.

$390,000
Baltimore, MD

Since 1999, the Abell Foundation has supported Vehicles for Change (VFC) in making low-cost cars available to low-income job seekers in Baltimore City. In 2015, with funding from Abell, VFC launched an automotive technician repair program.  VFC hires men and women who have been recently released from prison or who have been granted work release (usually in small cohorts of seven to eight people).  All program applicants have successfully completed the 600-hour Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Auto Maintenance and Light Repair training program while incarcerated.  At VFC, they receive three to five months of paid work experience, earning $9 an hour.  The on-the-job experience is designed to build the trainees’ resumes and overcome any reservations that employers have about hiring returning citizens.  All trainees must pass at least four ASE certification tests.   The program is working:  of the 150 trainees who enrolled since the beginning of the program, 13 are still in training, 131 wer placed into full-time employment and only six have not completed because they were on work release and had to return to prison.  All of the 131 graduates have been placed into employment, with an average starting hourly wage of $16 per hour.  Funding from Abell will support the training and job placement of 56 to 60 Baltimore residents.

Vehicles for Change, Inc.

$120,000
Baltimore, MD

Since 1999, the Abell Foundation has supported Vehicles for Change in making low-cost cars available to low-income job seekers in Baltimore City. With funding from Abell, VfC plans to award 40 repaired and Maryland-inspected cars to Baltimore City residents referred by the following sponsoring agencies:  Center for Urban Families, Humanim, Living Classrooms, JOTF’s Project Jumpstart, and the Biotechnical Institute of Maryland.  

Health & Human Services

Advocates for Children and Youth

$50,000
Baltimore, MD

Advocates for Children and Youth (ACY) is an independent organization dedicated to promoting the interests of children and families in Maryland through research, policy development, community outreach, media relations, and government relations.  ACY is one of the leading champions of policies in Maryland that advance the interests of children across a broad range of issues, including education, child welfare, juvenile justice, and health care.  This grant supports ACY's child welfare program, which focuses on the needs of foster and homeless youth in Maryland.  

An End to Ignorance, Inc.

$50,000
Baltimore, MD

In March 2020, An End to Ignorance launched a food rescue and distribution effort in Baltimore in response to rising levels of food insecurity at the start of the Coronavirus pandemic.  Started as a small, neighborhood-based food relief effort in Greenmount West, the program has grown rapidly and now distributes 500-600 twenty-pound boxes of food and household goods through a network of community-based partners throughout the city.  This grant provides general operating support for An End to Ignorance.  

B'More Clubhouse, Inc.

$30,000
Baltimore, MD

B’more Clubhouse is certified as a psychiatric rehabilitation program.  It operates like a community center, where members have the opportunity to build a structure and support system that helps them obtain employment, further education, and affordable housing. As Clubhouse members, program participants contribute to the decision-making and implementation of all Clubhouse operations.  This grant supports B'more Clubhouse's general operations.  

B-360 STEM Education Program, Fiscally Sponsored by Fusion Partnerships, Inc.

$20,000
Baltimore, MD

B-360 STEM Education is a youth development program that utilizes dirt bike culture to equip youth and young adults with the skills and confidence to pursue STEM opportunities in school and beyond, while also promoting public safety through appropriate dirt bike riding practices. Youth learn and apply engineering theory to build and repair their own dirt bike.  This grant provides B-360 with general operating support.  

Baltimore Community Rowing

$25,000
Baltimore, MD

Reach High Baltimore, a project of Baltimore Community Rowing, was founded in 2011 to bring the sport of rowing to Baltimore City middle and high school students. The program provides programming year-round and serves about 125 students a year.  This grant supports the program's efforts to increase enrollment from the neighborhoods closest to the Baltimore Rowing Center, by funding a second bus route, which will provide transportation to students living in Cherry Hill and Westport.   

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