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The following grants are in excess of $5,000 and were awarded in 2021.
Attendance Works / Community Initiatives
Attendance Works will partner with the Success For All Foundation (SFA) in Baltimore City to provide an integrated attendance mentoring strategy, paired with intensive tutoring to negate learning loss and narrow equity gaps. Training for at least 22 tutors on how to effectively respond to absences and promote attendance is modeled after the Success Mentors initiative in New York that successfully yielded reduced absenteeism of nearly two weeks (9 days of school) for around 60,000 students between the years of 2010 and 2013.
The Baltimore Corps Mayoral Fellowship Program provides fifteen undergraduate seniors and graduate students a ten-week, full time, internship in high priority City Hall offices/agencies, working on Executive-level projects under key directors. In addition to their work assignments, participants attend weekly luncheons with pertinent speakers, do community service projects, and enjoy planned social events around the City. The ultimate goal of the Mayoral Fellowship is to encourage talented individuals, with an interest in public service to seek permanent positions within City government.
Baltimore Kids Chess League, Inc.
Sponsored by the Abell Foundation and Baltimore City Public Schools since 2004, the Baltimore Kids Chess League (BKCL) offers an academic extracurricular program that serves more than 750 children from kindergarten to 12th grade in thirty schools. 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's Promise / Fund for Educational Excellence
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 2021, the SFC included 13 public and private funders that, collectively, distributed $3.46 million to 87 programs, funding a projected 9,500 seats. This grant includes funding for between 5-10 non-profit organizations providing summer experiences that will be determined in late winter 2022 alongside funding for high dosage tutoring programs to provide layered support to funded summer providers.
Baltimore's Promise / Fund for Educational Excellence
In support of general operations for Baltimore’s Promise, including their work with literacy demonstration models, philanthropic funding collaboratives, the Grads2Careers program, and city-wide data compilation and analysis focused on youth.
Baltimore's Promise, Fiscally Sponsored by Fund for Educational Excellence
The Grads2Careers initiative seeks to establish a pathway for City Schools graduates who are not enrolled in four-year colleges or universities into well paying, high-demand, and high-growth occupations in the city and region. Phase I saw the 18-21 year old population served by Grads2Careers meeting the targets of 70% enrollment, 70% completion, and 70% or more participants being placed in job or enrolling in college. On a systems level, the initiative seeks to build capacity at the Mayor's Office of Employment Development, City Schools, and with occupational skills-training providers as these various entities work together to better serve the 18-21 year old population seeking to enter the workforce directly after high school.
Building Our Nation's Daughters, Inc. (BOND)
In support of Building Our Nation’s Daughter’s efforts to support 230 Black single mothers and daughters utilizing a two-generation approach that provides academic, social-emotional, and personal development support for mother-daughter pairs.
Building STEPS, Inc.
Building STEPS partners with non-academic-criteria Baltimore City high schools and provides college going support including STEM seminars, summer internship experiences, college workshops, tutoring support, and college counseling. Students are identified by their school counselor and are admitted through an application process. Participating students must meet the 3.0 GPA threshold and have strong school attendance. This grant from the Abell Foundation will enable expansion into the tenth grade in order to provide an additional year of programming to improve foundational math skills, boost SAT scores/college math readiness, and expand college persistence programming.
Carnegie Institution for Science
In support of delivering the BioEYES’ genetics curriculum to 8th grade students across Baltimore City. BioEYES provides a one-week curricular unit that meets critical academic standards in science using hands-on, project-based learning to 25 schools and 2,250 students annually.
Code in the Schools
In support of the Code in the Schools youth apprenticeship pilot, which will provide 72 youth apprentices with 450 hours of paid on the job training and culminate in seven-week internships with technology industry partners.
Commodore John Rodgers / Fund for Educational Excellence
In support of the Baltimore Early Education Model of Reaching Excellence, which will expand implementation of the Tools of the Mind curriculum and executive functioning (EF) centered learning from 10 to 27 classrooms, serving approximately 500 students.
Fund for Educational Excellence
The Fund for Educational Excellence is a Baltimore-based non-profit organization that supports public education through its fundraising and collaboration with Baltimore City Public Schools, convening of education stakeholders, and serving as a fiscal sponsor to non-profit organizations. The Fund acts as an independent ambassador, drawing upon its understanding of education needs in Baltimore City, as well as strong relationships with the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, to ensure the best possible education for our city’s public school students. The organization provides stewardship for over $20 million in private philanthropic support for programming targeted towards Baltimore City students.
Higher Achievement Baltimore
The Higher Achievement model provides multi-year, out-of-school programming in the areas of academics enrichment, family engagement, and high school placement support for middle school students in fifth through eighth grades. Each child participating in the program receives around 400 hours of programming. Program outcomes from 2019-2020, yielded 69% of students increasing one letter grade in math or maintaining As and Bs through the second quarter. Through the support of the Abell Foundation grant, Higher Achievement is currently engaging in an expansion plan that seeks to double their footprint by expanding to two additional schools by the Fall of 2022.
Holistic Life Foundation, Inc.
The Holistic Life Foundation (HLF) through its Mindful Moments program provides schools the opportunity to address climate and culture through a multi-tiered approach. The program is currently active in 23 schools and serves 3700 students throughout Baltimore. All students attending HLF schools receive the tier one supports by participating in the daily meditations and engaging in the classroom push in services provided by the mindfulness coaches. The most intensive, tier three students are able to self-refer or be directed by a teacher to report to the Mindful Moments room where they have time and space to decompress, cool down, talk to a caring adult, and ultimately return to the classroom better prepared to learn. The mindfulness practice, forwarded by the Holistic Life team equips students with much needed coping, relaxation, and centering techniques that can be employed universally, both inside and outside of the school setting.
Students in the iMentor program receive classes preparing them for college and career access during the school day via a weekly course that is facilitated by an iMentor’s school-based program manager. Through their iMentor classes, each student works to develop an individualized Post-Secondary Pathway (PSP). iMentor participants leverage high-impact mentoring relationships to explore careers, become competitive for jobs, secure employment, and succeed in a targeted profession.
Libraries Without Borders
Libraries Without Borders has partnered with Stillmeadow Community Fellowship Church and three local Baltimore City Schools to develop a permanent learning space that builds on the church’s existing role as a community anchor institution. This learning space provides after school and enrichment opportunities, summer programming, and other community services like food distribution and access to digital resources. The Stillmeadow Learning Center will also provide adult learning opportunities through a multitude of community partnerships.
Maryland Alliance of Public Charter Schools
The Maryland Alliance of Public Charter Schools (MAPCS) is a non-partisan group that serves as a voice for charter school communities. MAPCS helps to advocate for equitable and transparent conditions for public charter schools, offers support to new and existing public charter schools, and drives the discussion around innovative educational practices that lead to positive outcomes for students. In Baltimore City, thirty charter schools serve 20% of the public school students or around 13,000 students annually.
New Leaders - Baltimore
With the help of Abell Foundation start-up funding in 2005, the New Leaders Program has trained 375 leaders and developed 126 new principals making them the leading provider of training for principals and school leaders in City Schools. The New Leaders program seeks to train high quality principal candidates to lead schools, support teacher retention, and build teams. There are currently 112 New Leaders alumni actively working in education in Baltimore City, including 46 principals representing 29% of all principals in the district.
Patterson Park Public Charter School Inc.
Patterson Park Public Charter School is seeking to open a second campus within the Bayview area of Southeast Baltimore on the grounds of the Our Lady of Fatima complex. When at full capacity, Clay Hill Public Charter School (CHPCS) will serve 540 students and their families in Baltimore City. Key activities for phase one of the project include roof repair, window repair, an electrical upgrade, kitchen equipment installation, classroom and corridor improvements, bathrooms and health suite upgrades to become ADA compliant, as well as internet and technology installation. This grant will help with construction costs in preparation for opening of the new charter school in fall of 2021.
The Play On Purpose Freedom School program serves 200 students for six weeks during the summer and is open to students citywide. The Freedom Schools program provides a research-based, multicultural curriculum that emphasizes high-quality literacy and character-building activities, parent/family involvement, civic engagement and social action, intergenerational servant leadership development, sports, and fitness.
STEM Champions of Baltimore Inc.
Over the past seven years, STEM Champions of Maryland has developed as a staging ground to prepare 375 students in 30 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.
Success for All Foundation, Inc.
The Success For All Foundation, based out of the Johns Hopkins School of Education is developing a new middle school tutoring initiative, entitled ThemeReads. Summer of 2021 would be targeted for the research and development of the main program components of this middle school tutoring initiative. The implementation phase of ThemeReads will be paired with a matched evaluation of the program, comparing gains from pre-test to post-test for students participating in the intervention.
Teach For America-Baltimore
Teach For America’s organizational mission is to find, develop, and support equity-oriented leaders, to transform education and expand opportunity for children, starting in the classroom. Teach For America Baltimore utilizes a strategy of recruiting a diverse group of leaders from across the nation to commit at least two years of teaching to high needs classrooms. For the 2020-2021 school year, Teach For America seeks to strategically recruit and place 83-92 diverse corps members in difficult to staff teaching positions in low-income schools, alongside providing ongoing support to nearly 1300 alumni leaders working in various roles including principals, non-profit leaders, or other positions with the capacity to impact education throughout the city.
The Be.Org, Fiscally Sponsored by Bmore Empowered, Inc.
The Be.Org’s, Be.Virtual STEM based instruction and mentorship program is offered as an after school and summer experience for thirty students annually. By the end of the program, participating students will develop skills in C+ coding and will create a virtual reality curriculum module, using Unity software. This experience provides a pathway for students to receive their entry level Unity industry-recognized certification after 10 months of participation.
The Community School
The Community School is a state-certified, non-public school that provides individualized academics and mentoring for high school students who require an alternative educational route. The Community School educates up to twenty-two students a year, providing significant mentoring in a small environment to help their students achieve success personally and academically. In addition to a rigorous, yet individualized, college preparatory curriculum, The Community School offers mentoring around personal habits, skills, and responsibility.
The Ingenuity Project
The Ingenuity Project provides students with rigorous math and science courses and experiences that prepare and inspire a pursuit of advanced STEM learning. The program provides gifted programming to a cohort of diverse students that reflects the race, ethnicity, gender, and income of Baltimore City. Ingenuity middle school programming currently takes place at four locations throughout the city, while the high school program, taking place at Baltimore Polytechnic High School, aligns to the highest standards in math and science, enabling every student to participate in a research or STEM practicum experience.
The Literacy Lab
In support of The Literacy Lab’s expansion of evidence-based, small group, and individualized literacy tutoring to serve over 1,000 students in Pre-K and K-3 classrooms in Baltimore City Public Schools during the 2021-2022 school year.
The Maryland Book Bank, Inc
In support of the Maryland Book Bank’s plan to equip three evidence-based high-dosage tutoring programs in Baltimore with books matched to each student’s individual reading ability and interest.
In support of general operations for Thread, a community that is committed to ending social isolation and creating a new social fabric of diverse individuals deeply engaged with young people facing the most significant opportunity and achievement gaps.
The University Supported Middle School Tutoring Pilot is a project connecting Towson University and Morgan State University students with middle school students at AFYA public charter school in a tutoring relationship designed to boost literacy skills. The program will enable 20-30 college students to serve as university tutors that will be matched with two middle school students each for whom to providing literacy tutoring throughout the year.
The UMBC Reach Together Program (RTP) provides high-dosage tutoring for 350 students across four schools in south Baltimore (Arundel, Cherry Hill, Lakeland, and Westport) during the 2021-2022 school year. Alongside the intensive tutoring at these four schools, the UMBC math project will provide teacher level coaching to an additional six schools.
University of Maryland Baltimore Foundation
The Positive Schools Center (PSC) in an initiative housed within the University of Maryland School of Social Work that partners with school leaders and school staffs to build restorative and supportive schools. The Positive School Center collaborates with school leaders to ensure trauma-responsive educational approaches and restorative practices are integrated into every area of the school by providing training, staff and leadership coaching, direct community supports, and technical assistance.
University System of Maryland Foundation
In support of the Nurturing Excellence for Undergraduate Success (NEXUS) research project, which analyzes City Schools students currently in the USM pipeline and identifies graduation barriers and intervention opportunities for students at the greatest risk of dropping out.
In support of general operations for Urban Teachers, a rigorous four-year teacher recruitment and training model that features a 14-month clinical teacher residency. In 2022, Urban Teachers will support 364 residents and teachers.
Art with a Heart
Each year, Art with a Heart teachers and assistants provide engaging, educational, and interactive visual arts classes to vulnerable Baltimore children, youth, and adults. Funding from the Abell Foundaiton will support HeARTworks, a workforce development program that uses art as a vehicle to teach job skills; HeARTwares, Art with a Heart's social enterprise/retail store that sells HeARTworks participants’ artwork; and arts integration, Art with a Heart's engaging visual arts programs that supplement academic curricula in Baltimore elementary/middle schools.
Bon Secours Baltimore Health System Foundation
Funding from the Abell Foundation will support Bon Secours Baltimore Community Works' Returning Citizens program, which is designed to help 100 returning citizens break the cycle of incarceration. All program participants will receive behavioral health assessments and financial education; 70% are expected to complete TYRO, an intensive, five-week life skills course; and 65% will be placed into jobs, occupational skills training or higher education programs.
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. During the pandemic, Turnaround Tuesday has been holding weekly online orientation sessions on Monday, and transitioned its 30-hour essential skills training to a four-day, 16-hour online session. Last year, Turnaround Tuesday placed 202 people into jobs, most of which are defined by Turnaround Tuesday as being quality jobs, or those that pay over $16 per hour and offer medical and vacation benefits as well as a career pathway. In 2021, Turnaround Tuesday expects that 100 of its 225 placements will be in quality jobs.
CASA de Maryland, Inc.
The Baltimore Welcome Center provides employment placement services for day laborers and low-income workers who begin to assemble early in the morning in the hope of being selected for jobs in construction, landscaping, home improvement, sanitation, and other day-to-day, physical labor-intensive jobs. In the coming year, CASA plans to place workers in 1,700 daily jobs, 40 temporary/seasonal jobs, and 35 permanent jobs; to provide 50 people with legal consultation on immigration, employment, or housing matters; to provide 500 people with basic financial education/counseling, and 300 low-income households with free tax preparation services; and to educate 200 eligible Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs) about the naturalization process.
CASH Campaign of Maryland
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 in 2022 by operating 11 free tax preparation sites.
Center for Urban Families, Inc.
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, CFUF placed 37 STRIVE graduates and 159 other participants into jobs, earning an average wage of $14.12 per hour.
Civic Works, Inc.
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 infrastructure remediation and residential energy-efficiency industries. Across its programs, CSC has maintained an average job placement rate of 88%. Since 2010, 80% of graduates have remained employed for at least one year. Last year, 83% of program participants had a significant history of arrest and conviction and over 63% were formerly incarcerated. Over the next year, with funding from the Abell Foundation, CSC will train 100 Baltimore City residents for entry-level positions as well as 24 incumbent workers.
Downtown Partnership of Baltimore
The Mayor’s Office of Employment Development (MOED) and the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore (DPOB) are collaborating on a transitional employment initiative, where over the course of a year, MOED will hire 60 unemployed local residents and connect them to DPOB for three-month employment placements in DPOB’s Downtown COVID Cleaning Corps. Funding from the Abell Foundation will ensure that the COVID Cleaning Corps has the equipment needed to clean streets, alleyways, and other public places as businesses return to their downtown offices. Abell funds will be used to purchase sensors that the Cleaning Corps members will install on trashcans throughout downtown Baltimore. The sensors are designed to improve trash collection.
Grow Home, Inc
In support of the Baltimore Builders Workforce Development Program, providing 65 youth from the Brooklyn/Curtis Bay neighborhood with paid, on-the-job work experience in maintaining community gardens and completing other community improvement projects.
Direct Service Professionals (DSPs) are the front line staff who work closely with individuals diagnosed with an intellectual or developmental disability. To respond to the critical need for trained workers, Humanim, with support from the Abell Foundaiton, will recruit and train 130 DSPs to meet and exceed all DSP required state trainings/certifications. Abell funding will also support Humanim and Obran, a worker cooperative conglomerate corporation, to help 30 DSPs to launch a worker-owned alternative staffing company. Obran will recruit the employee-owners, and work with them to establish and organization structure. The employee-owners of the newly formed worker cooperative will deliver quality services to employer partners and share in the company's prosperity.
Jane Addams Resource Corporation
The Jane Addams Resource Corporation (JARC) Baltimore trains unemployed and/or underemployed Baltimore City residents in welding and computer numerical control (CNC) at the Regional Skills Training Center on Park Heights Avenue in West Baltimore. With funding from the Abell Foundation, students receive hands-on training and earn industry-recognized credentials in a work-like environment. Beyond technical skills training, JARC Baltimore provides employment readiness and financial support services to trainees during and after training. Graduates are placed into jobs earning an average starting wage of $16 per hour.
Living Classrooms Foundation
Project SERVE enrolls up to 150 returning citizens a year, providing them with paid, on-the-job work experience. Once participants have worked with Project SERVE for four to six months, they are placed into entry-level jobs with public and private employers. In 2019, the program maintained a 60% job placement rate, a 56% job retention rate after one year of employment, and a low recidivism rate of 9%. With funding from the Abell Foundation, Project SERVE will expand its case management and wraparound services to support 60 additional participants.
Maryland New Directions
Maryland New Directions, Inc., (MND) is a private, nonprofit, career counseling and job placement agency that provides one-on-one job coaching for immediate job placement as well as occupational skills training for careers in the transportation and logistics industry. Funding from Abell will support MND in assisting more than 200 job seekers in Baltimore.
In support of providing 150 young adults from underserved neighborhoods with IT certification training and paid internships in the IT industry. Within one year of graduating, participating students are employed with an average starting wage of $16 per hour.
Rose Street Community Center
Since February 2000, with support from the Abell Foundation, the Rose Street Community Center (Rose Street) has offered small weekly stipends 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 five 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. Roughly a third of those served each week (30 to 40 people) are in recovery or active addiction. They participate in a morning motivational meeting and receive a small stipend for bus transportation. 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.
Southeast Community Development Corporation
In support of providing youth who reside in the McElderry Park and Ellwood Park neighborhoods with paid work opportunities eliminating trash and reducing illegal dumping to create a safer and cleaner environment.