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Neighborhood Connections and Cuyahoga Arts & Culture announce $213,052 in grants to 67 projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland neighborhoods

Photo Credit: Bob Perkowski

CLEVELAND (December 1, 2015) - Neighborhood Connections, the small-grants and grassroots community-building program affiliated with the Cleveland Foundation, has approved $208,052 in grants to support 67 different projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland. Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, Cuyahoga County’s public funder for arts and culture, will co-fund 18 of the resident-led arts and culture projects through a partnership with Neighborhood Connections.

Highlights of the grants include:

  • Poetree Project Committee* was awarded $2,000 for The Poetree Project. This project will install Poetree Boxes around the Detroit Shoreway community, promoting the arts and creating strong connections between diverse groups.
  • Our Family Home Center was awarded $4,000 for Youth Tutoring/Mentoring and Expanded Free Meal/Snack Program. This program provides tutoring, healthy snacks, and a hot meal to at-risk youth in the East Cleveland community.
  • Refugee Ministries Development* was awarded $4,000 for Rising Stars: Learning with Music & Technology. This program teaches Mt. Pleasant youth the science of music and its integration with math, language, science, culture, and helps them develop performance skills.
  • Rose House was awarded $1,199 for Slavic Village Women and Girls Empowerment Summit. This day-long networking event brings together creative and inspiring women to give women and girls in the community the opportunity to explore avenues they might otherwise not have known existed.

*Co-funded by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture and Neighborhood Connections

“Our partnership with Cuyahoga Arts & Culture helps fuel community projects that are reinvigorating our neighborhoods,” said Tom O’Brien, program director of Neighborhood Connections.“ The projects demonstrate that innovative ideas are bubbling up all over town.”

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture invested $75,000 in Neighborhood Connections in 2015 to support vibrant arts and cultural programs in Cleveland and East Cleveland. The additional funding supports community-based arts and culture activities organized by Cuyahoga County residents.

“Cuyahoga Arts & Culture is proud to invest public dollars in resident-led projects in our community,” said Karen Gahl-Mills, executive director & CEO of Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. “Through a continued partnership with Neighborhood Connections, we’re leveraging public funds to infuse Cleveland’s neighborhoods with vibrant arts and culture programs and events.”

View a complete list of Neighborhood Connections grants awarded.

Neighborhood Connections’ grant program offers grants of $500 to $5,000 twice a year in May and November to groups of residents in Cleveland and East Cleveland who organize projects to improve the quality of life in their neighborhood. Groups are encouraged to work with partners, and to propose creative solutions to challenges in their community.

About Cuyahoga Arts & Culture
Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s mission is to inspire and strengthen the community by investing in arts and culture.Cuyahoga County residents created Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC) in 2006 when they approved a tax on cigarettes to support arts and culture in our community. In 2015, the community affirmed its commitment to arts and culture by extending the tax through 2027 with Issue 8.Cuyahoga Arts & Culture has invested more than $140 million in more than 300 organizations to deliver on the promise made to support thousands of enriching arts and culture experiences in every corner of the county. In addition, through a partnership with Neighborhood Connections, CAC has co-funded 178 resident-led arts and culture projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland since 2013. For more information, visit

About Neighborhood Connections
Neighborhood Connections is a grassroots community-building program created by the Cleveland Foundation in 2003. Neighborhood Connections awards small grants of up to $5,000 to fund citizen-led neighborhood projects, events, and activities that benefit Cleveland and East Cleveland. While most foundations solely extend grants to nonprofit organizations, Neighborhood Connections grants support the ideas of everyday people to make life better, right where they live.Through its grants, Neighborhood Connections seeks to build community by connecting people in Cleveland’s neighborhoods and encouraging them to become more engaged with each other and the city around them. Neighborhood Connections is guided by a grantmaking committee made up of 24 Cleveland and East Cleveland residents with a history of community involvement. The committee reviews and approves all grants. Since 2003, Neighborhood Connections has awarded more than 2,000 grants totaling more than $7.15 million.For more information, visit

View a complete list of Neighborhood Connections grants awarded.

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CAC Staff