When Jay Williams, president of the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving arrived last year, he promised to practice a new way of leading: collaborate in order to challenge the status quo and take measured risks during a time of many challenges and opportunities. In 2017, the Hartford Foundation, serving 29 communities in the Greater Hartford region, awarded 2,385 grants amounting to more than $34.5 million to the region's nonprofit agencies and educational institutions, all with the goal of improving the quality of life in our region.
While these facts and figures are significant, the real story is about you. It is about how our region’s donors, nonprofits, policymakers and our overall community came together for good.
In 2017’s annual report, you will read stories about the impact all of us made to enrich lives and secure a better future for those who live in our region. These stories focus on the community issues we collectively care about and how the Foundation was able to address them through the lens of three strategic priorities: education, economic opportunity, and vibrant communities.
“Traditionally, an annual report is an opportunity to look back. This report certainly does that, recognizing the efforts of many who are working to improve life in the Greater Hartford Region,” Williams said. “My aspiration for the Hartford Foundation is to help launch our community into a new era by thinking differently, acting differently and leading differently. As the largest community foundation in the state, we have the responsibility to protect the legacy entrusted to us by donors and, at the same time, use our assets effectively to live our mission. We can and will do both.”
This year’s annual report demonstrates how the Foundation is aligning its work and the generosity of its donors to the needs of our community. For example:
We recognize that in an increasingly global society and economy, Greater Hartford's cultural and linguistic diversity is an asset to build upon. In our second year as a member of the statewide Immigration Strategic Funders Collaborative, the Hartford Foundation awarded six grants totaling $109,835 to support the region's organizations that support immigrants. These organizations conduct outreach, distribute information, offer legal clinics for pathway screening, provide educational support and deliver workshops for undocumented youth.
Homelessness is a solvable problem.
In 2017, the Foundation invested $1.33 million to help a coalition of partners move closer to ending homelessness. Our investment, combined with those of other funders, will continue to support integrated efforts to keep more families in their homes and provide access to stable housing.
Connecticut has the fourth highest home foreclosure rate in the nation. A three-year, $235,000 grant to the Connecticut Fair Housing Center will support both research and direct support of neighbors facing foreclosure on reverse mortgages.
More than half (54%) of our state’s released offenders will return to prison in three years, often because they cannot find work. The Foundation’s support of both the sixth Annual Greater Hartford Reentry Employment and Resource Fair and the new one-stop Reentry Welcome Center aims to help reduce recidivism by connecting these potential employees to support resources and actual job opportunities.
Doretta Andonucci, the Hartford Foundation’s communications manager, and annual report editor, shares, “Each year I am amazed at the generosity and creativity of our donors. Sometimes we see a parent looking to help other people’s children take music lessons. Other times it’s a family wanting to honor the memory of a loved one by supporting access to mental health care or a college scholarship. While the Foundation has the resources and vision to connect individuals with the tools to give, it begins and ends with the compassion of everyday people.”
The 2017 Annual Report is available online in an interactive video format, or as a PDF at hfpg.org/ar2017. Or contact the Communications and Marketing Department at 860-548-1888 to request a print copy.
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving is the community foundation for Hartford and 28 surrounding communities. Made possible by the gifts of generous individuals, families, and organizations, the Foundation has awarded grants of more than $720 million since its founding in 1925. For more information about the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, visit www.hfpg.org or call 860-548-1888.