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Johnson Center receives grants for new web platform on Michigan's philanthropic history

Posted on July 20, 2012

Grand Valley State University’s Johnson Center for Philanthropy has received two grants totaling $30,000 to be used toward a project that will produce a new interactive web-based platform about Michigan’s nonprofit and foundation history over the past 40 years. These two grants are in addition to a previous $500,000 investment from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to launch the project.

The grants from The McGregor Fund and the Guido A. and Elizabeth H. Binda Foundation, will provide partial funding for the Johnson Center's “Our State of Generosity” project. The project will provide the international nonprofit and philanthropic field with insights on Michigan’s experience in growing philanthropy. The goal is to offer information that can enhance the effectiveness of philanthropy in other states and emerging societies. It is expected to launch during the summer of 2013.

New details of how Michigan has nurtured a collaborative infrastructure for volunteerism, nonprofits, and philanthropy will be shared through audio and videotaped interviews of key philanthropic leaders, narrative descriptions of major projects and their impact, as well as access to original documents of major nonprofit and foundation infrastructure organizations. The web-based platform will also provide access to themes, principles of leadership, lessons learned developed in to “how-to” guides, and lesson plans for classrooms on philanthropy, nonprofits, and service. 

The four organizations whose documents will be made available are the Council of Michigan Foundations (serving grantmaking foundations), Michigan Nonprofit Association (serving state nonprofits), Michigan Community Service Commission (managing federal funding for volunteerism and service), and the Johnson Center for Philanthropy (Grand Valley’s academic center on philanthropy).

The mission of “Our State of Generosity” is to capture, preserve, analyze, and share the developments and experience that has made Michigan a philanthropic leader. By capturing those lessons learned, a blueprint can be made for other states and nations.

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