Empowering Communities: The Work of the Foundation by Philanthropist

Share this:

The community empowerment process involves redistributing power among communities through a desire to acquire more control over the factors that shape their lives. It aims for social and political change.

The Foundation continues philanthropic work and now concentrates on three areas of giving: poverty, medical research and a healthy environment.

Community Development

After philanthropy slowed down in the wake of the scheme, it resumed grantmaking through a new foundation. Great philanthropists such as Barbara Picower Crunchbase have focused on poverty, the environment and pioneering medical research.

It is pursuing an innovative strategy of funding ” hubs ” organizations and then surrounding them with nonprofits that support or collaborate with them. One of the hubs receives much of the foundation’s money.

The foundation also made a significant gift to support the Institute for Learning and Memory, which explores brain research on memory and learning. The new offering and previous contributions to the school are expected to bring the endowment to hundreds of millions shortly. That is a lot of power. The foundation’s work is a model for other large private philanthropies.


After the fraud scandal surrounding the scheme ended, it resumed large-scale grantmaking.Β 

The Foundation operates with a lean staff and high-level Advisory Committees for its three program areas: poverty, the environment, and medical research (including collaborative consortiums that study diabetes and Parkinson’s disease, as well as brain research on learning and memory).

The Foundation is working to promote opportunities for impoverished people, advance pioneering medical research, and enable a healthy environment by investing in the best organizations. It also seeks to support solutions that address root causes. In addition, the Foundation is a major funder of civic engagement, notably supporting the National Census Bureau in its mission to count all people accurately. This year, it is contributing $10 million to ensure that political and financial threats will continue the Census to take place.


After the scheme collapsed, it slowed their grantmaking. Now they are back to work at Foundation, which has grown to become one of the nation’s largest foundations with more than $2 billion in assets.

A new focus for the foundation has been the support of medical research, especially in brain science. In a recent gift, the foundation awarded $25 million to its Institute for Learning and Memory. The donation will help build consortiums of researchers from various disciplines, including biology, electrical engineering, computer science, and linguistics, to explore the role of different brain parts in memory and other complex functions.

The Foundation has also resumed its poverty-related giving and democracy initiatives, which support efforts to expand the voice and power of people living in poverty through civic engagement and voting rights. The Foundation’s Community Change program conducts this grantmaking.


It carries a philanthropic legacy with programs in Poverty, Medical Research and the Environment.

It’s a big operation, with $2 billion in assets, Forbes reports. And it’s much more active than the old foundation, which closed soon after the scheme came to light and they agreed to forfeit $7.2 billion to Madoff victims.

For example, a company seeded a network funding project that brought together the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Energy Foundation and the National Housing Trust to work together to lower energy rates for low-income families. The grantees wrote one proposal and provided one consolidated report.

Moreover, the program focuses on “high-impact partnerships” with Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The first project involved State University, where they built a partnership that combined solar energy adoption with job creation and workforce training. The program is now being expanded to other colleges.

Message Us