By Eze Jackson
At a press briefing Wednesday morning, Mayor Catherine Pugh announced The Baltimore City Community Grants Program. The partnership between the Mayor’s office and The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation will provide up to $10,000 to nonprofits with an annual operating budget of less than $500,000.
“There are more than enough dirty alleys and empty lots in the city. There are thousands of hungry residents that this can fill their need,” said Ray Kelly of No Boundaries Coalition.
No Boundaries, which is responsible for a number of community organizing efforts in and around the Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood, will be helping the smaller organizations in the coalition apply for the grants.
Kelly sees these grants as a result of a series of Call to Action meetings the mayor began after taking office last January.
“Mayor Pugh is the first one to listen to us,” he said. “We’ve been saying for years that they need to listen to those who are on the ground doing the work.”
“It’s through the Mayor’s leadership they are able to provide these grants,” said Nakia Horton of The Weinberg Foundation. “It gives us an opportunity to reach the organizations we normally would not be able to reach.”
The Weinberg Foundation is providing $500,000 over the course of the next two years.
“The Mayor’s office’s role is to jointly review applications. The Weinberg Foundation will make all grant payments directly to the nonprofits,” said Alli Smith, Director of Community Engagement. “We’re very excited to see who applies.”