Apply for the 2018 Atlanta Community Investment Fund

Posted March 14, 2018
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
A community garden in Atlanta, supported by the Casey Foundation's Community Investment Fund

Jason Miczek for the Casey Foundation

The Casey Foundation’s Com­mu­ni­ty Invest­ment Fund (CIF) is offer­ing res­i­dents in sev­er­al South­west Atlanta com­mu­ni­ties a shot at receiv­ing small grants that offer a big oppor­tu­ni­ty for last­ing com­mu­ni­ty change.

With awards between $500 and $5,000 each, the pro­gram works by build­ing on exist­ing neigh­bor­hood strengths while spurring inno­va­tion. The fund is open to grass­roots orga­ni­za­tions and res­i­dents seek­ing to build improve­ment projects in Adair Park, Capi­tol Gate­way, Mechan­icsville, Peo­plestown, Pitts­burgh and Sum­mer­hill, known col­lec­tive­ly as NPU‑V.

Now in its fourth year, the Com­mu­ni­ty Invest­ment Fund has helped grow local lead­ers. A board com­prised of exist­ing NPU‑V res­i­dents decide which projects are fund­ed, enabling peo­ple vest­ed in the com­mu­ni­ty to grow its capac­i­ty to thrive. In exchange for their time and effort, CIF board mem­bers receive train­ing and oth­er devel­op­ment oppor­tu­ni­ties to strength­en man­age­ment, net­work­ing and lead­er­ship skills.

You know, 2017 was the year we dis­cov­ered that our wings work,” said Bran­di Hicks, exec­u­tive direc­tor of Rae of Light Foun­da­tion, Inc., reflect­ing on her project’s Col­lege Clin­ic for mid­dle and high school stu­dents in NPU‑V.

Grantees have devel­oped projects that give res­i­dents resources and also, a voice. Rich Lau­pus pro­duced a doc­u­men­tary project on the his­toric Sum­mer­hill neigh­bor­hood called, There’s Some­thing About Sum­mer­hill,” with 100 hours of videos and more than 3,000 pho­tos. His goal: to take sto­ries that are in the shad­ows and bring them into the light.”

In doc­u­ment­ing the past, Lau­pus pro­ject­ed a promis­ing future.

Young peo­ple are mov­ing into Sum­mer­hill now and there’s a divide,” he said. The old folks don’t know the new folks, and vice ver­sa. But when we lis­ten to each other’s sto­ries, we open a win­dow to each oth­er. We all want to be heard. And besides, how can we sculpt a future if we pave over the past?”

The appli­ca­tion for the 2018 Com­mu­ni­ty Invest­ment Fund is avail­able now and will be accept­ed through March 19. Projects will receive addi­tion­al con­sid­er­a­tion if they sup­port the fol­low­ing pri­or­i­ties of the 2018 CIF Board:

  • involve more than one community;
  • include com­mu­ni­ty remembrance;
  • address equi­ty and/​or equal­i­ty (through convening/​discussion);
  • include a pol­i­cy and advo­ca­cy com­po­nent (afford­able hous­ing, men­tal health, city bud­get & social justice);
  • include human ser­vices (men­tal health, addic­tion, home­less­ness, access to ser­vices etc.); and
  • sup­port edu­ca­tion and engage­ment for chil­dren and youth.

The dead­line for 2018 sub­mis­sions is 5 p.m. on Mon­day, March 19. If you have ques­tions, please con­tact Pao­la Ayala.

Down­load the application

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