The Northwestern Mutual Foundation has awarded more than $425,000 in arts education grants to help 18 southeastern Wisconsin area nonprofits.
“The impact that the arts make on local kids reaches far beyond any studio, stage or dance floor,” said Kimberley Goode, president of the Northwestern Mutual Foundation. “Creative arts courses inspire children to reach their full potential; strengthening our communities in the long-term. So we’re proud to partner with the best area organizations to bolster arts education.”
First Stage Children’s Theater is one of the 18 grant recipients.
“We are so grateful to the Northwestern Mutual Foundation for recognizing that the arts help children to reach their full potential,” said Jeff Frank, First Stage artistic director. “We witness the transformative power of the arts every day as we work with young people on stage, at the Theater Academy and in their school classrooms. Theater programs have an incredible impact on the social and emotional development of children and participation naturally builds life skills such as confidence, teamwork and leadership.”
The grant will support First Stage’s Community Partnership Program which provides financial aid and support services for low-income youth to attend the First Stage Theater Academy and in-school arts integration programs for students and teachers at underserved schools.
“With funding for the Community Partnership Program, we are bridging the opportunity gap, making it possible for low-income families and schools to experience the profound benefits of our programs,” Frank said. “In fact, independent research revealed that our programs have the greatest impact on those that need it most – namely those served by the Community Partnership Program.”
Other organization’s receiving the grants include:
- Arts at Large
- Cultural Alliance of Greater Milwaukee
- Discovery World
- Express Yourself Milwaukee Inc.,
- Florentine Opera Company
- Ko-Thi Dance Company
- Milwaukee Ballet
- Milwaukee Children’s Choir
- Milwaukee Repertory Theater
- Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra
- Skylight Opera Theater
- String Academy of Wisconsin
- VSA Wisconsin
- Walker’s Point Center for the Arts