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Annual Report

2023 Grants in Action

Photo courtesy of Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, which used a recent Trust grant to improve care across the region.

For a century, The Trust has woven together the generosity of thousands of New Yorkers to help their neighbors secure stable housing and good nutrition, while also ensuring access to great art, comfortable green spaces, and meaningful civic influence.

2023 was no different.

“While New York teetered on the edge of recession and newcomers poured into the city fleeing dire conditions in other parts of the world, we proved once again that The Trust can use a combination of philanthropic support for direct services, research, and advocacy to make our region more accessible and welcoming for all its residents, from the newest to the oldest,” said Shawn Morehead, our vice president for grants.

This snapshot of our grantmaking provides a glimpse into the incredible work of the thousands of nonprofits that make our region an unparalleled place to live, work, and play. We’re grateful to the charitable New Yorkers whose legacies fuel our grantmaking and make this work possible.

Helping New Yorkers Secure Stable Housing

For the first time in history, New York City’s homeless shelter population is greater than 100,000. For many unhoused New Yorkers, the path to a stable home is rife with challenges, particularly given New York’s affordable housing deficit. Homeward NYC is using a Trust grant to help residents overcome these obstacles by providing more than 400 unhoused residents and hundreds of formerly homeless residents with supportive resources to remain permanently housed. Our Delacorte Fund, which allows unrestricted giving, contributed to this grant.

Advancing Reproductive Health Care

Just months after five local Planned Parenthood affiliates merged as Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, Covid-19 struck, forcing them to delay operational changes that could have drastically improved care. Our grant helped the agency institute these changes by streamlining operations and policies across its 23 clinics. To date, Planned Parenthood has optimized its reproductive health services for more than 100,000 patients across 31 counties. Our Rebecca and Nathan Weiss Fund, which improves the delivery and accessibility of health services, helped make this grant possible.

Photo courtesy of Imani Winds, which is using a Trust grant to create a digital platform for musicians to produce and share their work.

Developing Media Literacy Skills in Long Island Schools

The rapid spread of misinformation on social media has made media literacy an essential skill. With renewed support from The Trust, Stony Brook University is expanding its News Literacy Education program to the Hampton Bays and Malverne school districts to prepare young people for informed media consumption. The grant supports curriculum development, training for teachers, and a news literacy outreach program for families and community members in partner districts. The Wallace Fund for Youth-Long Island, which supports learning and enrichment opportunities for children and youth, made this grant possible.

Strengthening New York’s Arts Sector

As part of our efforts to strengthen small arts organizations, we made a three-year grant to the Grammy-nominated Imani Winds to create a digital platform for musicians to produce and stream their work. The group is subsidizing recording and production fees and providing artists with individual consultations. By helping artists expand their digital footprints, Imani Winds hopes to create new, meaningful opportunities for New York’s artists and audiences. Our Jane W. Kitselman Fund supports classical chamber music and helped make this grant possible.

Photo courtesy of JCC Brooklyn‘s Camp for Children who are Blind or have Low Vision. A Trust grant helped the JCC launch this camp, which is now getting ready for its second summer.

Championing Inclusive Opportunities

Few NYC-based summer camps exist for visually impaired young people, a deficit that limits educational and social development opportunities. We’re helping meet this need by supporting the establishment of a Brooklyn summer program for school-aged children with blindness and low vision. Run by Jewish Community Center (JCC) Brooklyn, the camp offers inclusive recreational activities that teach social and life skills and provide participants with an equitable camp experience. Our David Warfield Fund supports services for those with visual disabilities and helped make this grant possible.

Grantees Floating Hospital and Care for the Homeless provided this mother and daughter, along with hundreds of other migrants, with free vaccinations and other primary care. Photo by Rebecca Smeyne/CKA

Ensuring Migrants Receive Essential Health Care

In response to New York’s ongoing influx of migrants, many of whom are unvaccinated children, we supported a vaccination program that prioritizes recent migrants in neighborhoods in Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx. The program is led by the Floating Hospital and Care for the Homeless. Each agency vaccinated 700 migrants and is advocating for further vaccinations as part of a comprehensive public health approach to care for new migrants. Our Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial Fund focuses on health and welfare and is one of several funds that made this grant possible.

Supporting Youth Activism

Following the 2020 protests for racial justice, Avenues for Justice launched a virtual media advocacy program as an alternative way for justice-involved young people to make their voices heard. With renewed support from The Trust, the group is continuing to provide a creative advocacy outlet for participants through digital literacy and restorative justice classes. To date, the program has helped equip and empower 50 young people to become activists. The Bear Sterns Award invests in innovative programs benefiting New Yorkers and supported this grant.

Improving Literacy Through Arts Programming

Currently, only half of New York City students enter fifth grade as proficient readers. To address this challenge, we made a two-year grant to Young People’s Chorus for a school chorus program for fifth graders that combines choral education with teaching techniques that develop foundational literacy skills like phonological and phonemic awareness, comprehension, and vocabulary building. Our John Paul Itta and Tony Murray Fund, which supports arts and music education, helped make this grant possible.

Advancing Sustainability in Westchester County

Because climate action must occur at the local level, Sustainable Westchester provided technical assistance to the cities of Peekskill and Yonkers to create community thermal energy networks. These networks connect multiple buildings together and leverage heat generated by existing infrastructure, such as municipal sewers, to deliver heating and cooling while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and saving the cities money. Sustainable Westchester’s work is creating a model that other municipalities can adopt. Funds for this grant come partially from our Henry Phillip Kraft Memorial Fund for environmental protection and improvement.