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The Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan has awarded nearly $1.2 million in grants to 46 organizations through the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Funds. Each grantee organization is performing critical work within the seven counties of southeast Michigan; Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Washtenaw, St. Clair, and Livingston.

Last year, the Community Foundation awarded $720,000 to 33 organizations from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Funds.

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation established these endowment funds at the Community Foundation to provide support to issue areas that were important to Mr. Wilson during his lifetime: Caregiving, Design and Access, Community Assets, and Youth Sports. Endowment funds are designed to grow over time and provide funding in perpetuity for charitable causes according to the Wilson Foundation’s wishes.

“The grants stemming from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Funds are a true testament to Mr. Wilson’s values,” said Mariam C. Noland, President of the Community Foundation. “His legacy will live on through the impact created by each organization’s grant-funded project.”

The endowment funds at the Community Foundation are complementary to the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation’s efforts to create immediate impact within the communities of Southeast Michigan and Western New York. To learn more about grants offered by the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation directly, please visit RCWJRF.org.

The following grants were awarded from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Foundation Funds administered by the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan through an open, competitive application process:

Grants from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Fund for Caregiving

  • American Cancer Society – $25,000 for Caregiver Resource Guides for cancer patient caregivers in Wayne County
  • Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute – $25,000 for cancer caregiver programming at the Institute’s Weisberg Cancer Treatment Center in Farmington Hills
  • Cancer Support Community of Greater Ann Arbor – $23,478 for cancer caregiver psychosocial support programs
  • Certified Senior Solutions – $25,000 for a caregiver employer education and resource program
  • Chaldean Community Foundation – $25,000 for a caregiver training and education program overseeing adults with developmental disabilities
  • Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit – $14,270 for a caregiver support group program
  • JVS – $18,975 for family and professional caregiver training for people living with dementia
  • Jewish Hospice and Chaplaincy Network – $25,000 for a curriculum to train volunteers on caregiver well-being
  • Leeway Health Education Foundation – $25,000 for a web-based video pilot series for African-American cancer patients and caregivers
  • Universal Dementia Care – $ $25,000 for workshops and self-care sessions for caregivers of persons with dementia in vulnerable communities.

Grants from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Fund for Design and Access

  • Fraser First Booster Club – $28,000 for a universally designed swing set at McKinley Barrier Free Park
  • Hazon, Inc. – $27,000 for the design of an interactive community-building connector trail along the Oakland Avenue
  • Huron-Clinton Metroparks Foundation – $35,000 for the development of multi-use trails in the Stony Creek Metropark
  • MotorCities National Heritage Area Partnership – $41,000 for the Fort Street Bridge Interpretive Park
  • Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit – $33,000 to open the museum campus to walking and biking in Midtown
  • Potawatomi Mountain Biking Association – $35,000 for construction of sustainable mountain biking and outdoor recreation trails
  • Project Evergreen – $50,000 for the renovation of Pingree Park on Detroit’s East side
  • Southwest Detroit Business Association Inc. – $41,000 for the Iron Belle Connector in Southwest Detroit
  • Wayne State University – $50,000 for a family-friendly park at Warren and Woodward Streets

Grants from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Fund for Youth Sports

  • Clark Park Coalition – $20,000 for the expansion of sports sampling and recreational free play for youth in southwest Detroit
  • Detroit Horse Power – $20,000 for the expansion of summer and afterschool horseback riding and youth development programs
  • Detroit PAL, Inc. – $25,000 for the expansion of the “Girls Changing the Game” program
  • Friends of Rutherford Pool – $21,240 for increased recreation, water safety, and lifeguard training opportunities for Ypsilanti area youth
  • Hamtramck Warriors Soccer – $15,000 for a year-round youth soccer program
  • Matrix Human Services – $25,000 for an afterschool and evening recreational program that exposes Detroit youth to fitness, basketball, boxing, and mentoring
  • Motor City Grounds Crew – $25,000 for youth free play sports activities and youth coaching clinics in four Detroit community parks
  • Motor City Tennis Club – $25,000 for the implementation of a tennis program with teachers and youth in Detroit
  • Playworks Education Energized Michigan – $25,000 for professional development and consultative support for 70 adult “play leaders” at Detroit’s Summer Fun Centers
  • City of Port Huron – $25,000 for the purchase and installation of a bike pump track and related equipment in Optimist Park
  • Racquet Up Detroit – $10,000 for improvements to squash facilities
  • University Liggett School – $25,000 for a new youth sports coach academy in southeast Michigan
  • Wayne State University – $24,892 for a yoga-based, youth training development program
  • Wayne State University – $25,000 for the expansion of a unique youth sports-centered program offered in partnership with the Detroit Housing Commission
  • City of Wyandotte – $20,000 for renovation costs of a youth softball and baseball field
  • YMCA of Blue Water Area – $25,000 for the design and implementation of an annual coaching skills development program in Port Huron
  • YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit – $25,000 for the expansion of a neighborhood-based youth sports program
  • YMCA of Monroe – $25,000 for the Monroe County Sport Sampling and Nutrition Project

Grants from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Fund for Grosse Pointe Community Assets

  • Chamber Music Society of Detroit – $11,550 for a new series of chamber music concerts at the Grosse Pointe War Memorial
  • Full Circle Foundation – $23,780 to formalize a job training program for special needs adults, ages 18 – 26, transitioning out of the school system
  • Grosse Pointe Artists Association – $25,000 to build capacity to better respond to community requests for more arts programming
  • Grosse Pointe Foundation for Public Education – $25,000 to support “The Leader in Me” program in Grosse Pointe elementary schools
  • Grosse Pointe Historical Society – $25,000 for building awareness of the history of each of the Grosse Pointes and attracting web visitors, researchers, participants, and supporters
  • Grosse Pointe Symphony Orchestra Society – $13,500 for increasing outreach and accessibility
  • Grosse Pointe War Memorial – $25,000 for SummerFest 2018
  • Services for Older Citizens Inc. – $17,500 for technology upgrades to build capacity
  • University Liggett School – $25,000 for a community education series focused on child well being and community improvement

For updates on the next granting cycle, please visit cfsem.org/WilsonFunds

About the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan

The Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan is a full-service philanthropic organization leading the way to positive change in our region. As a permanent community endowment built by gifts from thousands of individuals and organizations, the Foundation supports a wide variety of activities benefiting education, arts and culture, health, human services, community development, and civic affairs.  Since its inception, the Foundation has distributed over $1 billion through more than 65,000 grants to nonprofit organizations throughout Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Washtenaw, St. Clair, and Livingston counties.  For more information, please visit http://www.cfsem.org.      

About the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation is a grantmaking organization dedicated primarily to sustained investment in the quality of life of the people of Southeast Michigan and Western New York. The two areas reflect Ralph C. Wilson, Jr.’s devotion to his hometown of Detroit and greater Buffalo, home of his Buffalo Bills franchise. Prior to his passing in 2014, Mr. Wilson requested that a significant share of his estate be used to continue a life-long generosity of spirit by funding the foundation that bears his name. The foundation has a grantmaking capacity of $1.2 billion over a 20-year period, which expires January 8, 2035. This structure is consistent with Mr. Wilson’s desire for the foundation’s impact to be immediate, substantial, measurable, and overseen by those who knew him best. For more information, visit www.rcwjrf.org  



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