Arlington, VA - Hundreds of philanthropists, grantmakers, and foundation representatives will experience firsthand the cutting-edge, innovative reforms taking place in Greater Philadelphia as a result of strategic grantmaking. Philadelphia serves as both the backdrop for the 2011 Council on Foundations Annual Conference and a model city for philanthropy in action. The conference features 10 off-site learning sessions that highlight local philanthropic projects impacting education, community revitalization, economic development, and workforce collaboration.
|WHAT:||Council on Foundations Annual Conference|
|WHEN:||April 10-12, 2011 (Off-Site Sessions take place on Monday, April 11)|
|WHERE:||Philadelphia Marriott Downtown
1201 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
|HOW:||Members of the media should request press credentials from the Council on Foundations’ Media Relations Department at email@example.com. Meeting locations will be provided when credentials are granted.|
The descriptions and times of each off-site session are as follows:
Philadelphia’s Education Reforms in Action (9:30 a.m.–5 p.m.): Philadelphia is a leader in constructive educational reforms, including Promise Academies that have longer school days and years, 74 charter schools, and a groundbreaking contract with the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers. Participants in this session will learn how these practices work, how educators effectively apply learning resources, and what barriers exist to sustainability and replication. The session will begin at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown with a discussion on bringing about a “system of great schools” with Dr. Arlene Ackerman, superintendent for the School District of Philadelphia. The group will then tour the Mastery Charter School – Lenfest Campus for a presentation on the Mastery Model and perspective on the reform agenda. This will be followed by a visit to the proposed PointGrays Promise Neighborhood led by Universal Companies President and CEO Abdur Rahim Islam. The final stop will be the Vaux Promise Academy and includes a presentation by Principal William Wade.
The Importance of Anchor Institutions in Community Revitalization (Noon–5 p.m.): Anchor institutions serve as strong catalysts for revitalization by providing jobs and services to residents and incentives for reinvestment. See how philanthropy has helped anchor institutions in Camden, N.J., create positive change. Camden Mayor Dana Redd, and other local stakeholders—including Jim Gibson of the Center for the Study of Social Policy and Wendell Pritchett, chancellor of Rutgers University – Camden Campus—will discuss the importance of an institution's relationship with the community. Tours will include the Camden waterfront; the North Camden and Cramer Hill neighborhoods; a former prison location and future site of the Kroc Center; Rutgers Camden Campus; waterfront institutions (USS New Jersey and Adventure Aquarium); Cooper Plaza; Lanning Square; and the Parkside neighborhood, including Lourdes Hospital.
Arts as an Economic Engine (Noon–5 p.m.): According to the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, cultural organizations in the Philadelphia region and their audiences spend $1.3 billion each year, generating 40,000 jobs and $158 million in tax revenue for state and local governments. This session focuses on how Philadelphia nonprofits and foundations are using the arts to drive economic development. Case studies include the Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation, Crane Arts Building, and the Hispanic Association of Contractors and Enterprises (HACE). The tour will conclude at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, where participants will hear from Jeremy Nowak, president and CEO of The Reinvestment Fund, and have the chance to take in performances during the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts.
Take Community Health and Wellness to a New Level (Noon–5 p.m.): Learn how three different programs are promoting health and wellness in ways that can be replicated anywhere in the United States. Participants will head to Pottstown to visit North Coventry Elementary school and hear from students and facility about the Owen J. Roberts School District’s Fit for Life wellness campaign. The second stop on the tour will be Freedom Valley YMCA at Pottstown to discuss the Pottstown Early Action for Kindergarten Readiness (PEAK) program with teachers and administrators. The program is providing coordinated preschool quality improvements to ensure all children enter kindergarten healthy and ready to learn. The final visit will be to Creative Health Services and Community Health Dental Center. The medical facility housing both agencies provides a Federally Qualified Health Center look-alike facility with on-site mental health services. Participants will learn about the successes and challenges of co-locating service providers.
Forging Community Partnerships to Revitalize a Steel Town (Noon–5 p.m.): Located in Chester County, Coatesville is a former bustling steel town with one of the highest poverty rates in Pennsylvania. Participants will have the opportunity to see up close how public and private dollars are transforming this community. The tour will include the construction site of a new hotel and business center and a visit to the historic Scott Middle School to learn about the school district’s commitment to the Coordinated School Health Program model and the Coatesville Youth Initiative. The event will conclude at the two-year old Brandywine Center, which includes low-income senior housing, a health center, dental care, and behavioral health services. Presenters include Angelo Romaniello, assistant superintendent for the Coatesville Area School District; Mike Lucas, director of ChesPenn Health Services, Ed Frey, Coatesville plant manager, ArcelorMittal; Terrence Farrell, chair, Chester County Commissioners; and Karl Marking, president, Coatesville City Council.
Gaining Ground: Strategies to Increase Access to Better Food in Urban Areas (Noon–5 p.m.): Many would say that the national conversation on “food deserts”—geographic areas in which people lack access to healthy, fresh food—started in Philadelphia. This visit highlights several ways public-private partnerships are addressing the nutritional challenges of these areas. Learn how a citywide farm-to-school program is improving nutrition education with tours of Greensgrow Farm and Fresh Grocer Progress Plaza. Panel discussions will include representative from Philadelphia School District, Fair Food, The Food Trust, and The Reinvestment Fund.
The Journey Home (1–4 p.m.): Learn how local funders, including the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, are partnering with community-based nonprofits to end homelessness and create a national model for philanthropic leadership. Northern Home and Project H.O.M.E. are two such programs that are helping some of the city's most vulnerable residents break the generational cycle of poverty. Attendees will have the opportunity to hear about the history of each site, speak with tenants about the impact each program has had on their lives, and understand why each local funder chose each organization.
Timely Collaboration to Help Low-Skilled Adults Advance Their Careers (2–5 p.m.): This session showcases the Roots to Re-entry Partnership at Bartram’s Garden where ex-offenders receive job training in landscaping and horticulture, as well as life skills support and job placement services. Participants will also see the Pennsylvania Partnership for Direct Care Workers at the Breslin Learning Center, where they will meet with trainees who are low-income job seekers and home health care workers seeking family-sustaining wage jobs in the health care sector. These initiatives are part of the $4 million Job Opportunity Investment Network, a public-private collaboration successfully working to “skill up” adults for the post-recession economy.
The Delaware Riverfront Transformed (2–5 p.m.): Be among the first to see results from successful partnerships between philanthropy and the public sector in achieving waterfront development. This two-part tour includes a visit to the Central Delaware Riverfront with a walking tour of Race Street Pier Park led by Tom Corcoran of the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation. The second stop will be at the Philadelphia Navy Yard and includes a presentation of the Navy Yard Master Plan by John Grady of the Philadelphia Industrial Development Cooperation, as well as a walking tour of the key redevelopment projects.
Going Beyond Contributions: Leveraging the Power of People through Volunteerism (2–5 p.m.): Corporate foundations and giving programs are learning the power of harnessing their employee base to supplement philanthropy and achieve greater social impact. Participants will visit the region’s largest hunger relief organization, Philabundance, serving low-income residents most at risk of hunger or malnutrition. Attendees will also take part in a hands-on volunteer experience by sorting food donations and packing boxes for delivery to local food cupboards, shelters, and emergency kitchens. There will be a discussion on creative ways to energize employee volunteers, best practices working with nonprofits, and communicating success.
The Council on Foundations (www.cof.org), formed in 1949, is a nonprofit membership association of grantmaking foundations and corporations. Members of the Council include more than 1,750 independent, operating, community, public, and company-sponsored foundations, and corporate giving programs in the United States and abroad. The Council’s mission is to provide the opportunity, leadership, and tools needed by philanthropic organizations to expand, enhance, and sustain their ability to advance the common good.
Council on Foundations