Zilber Familly Foundation awards $3.5 million in grants

Focused on Milwaukee's Lindsay Heights, Clarke Square and Layton Boulevard West neighborhoods

Revitalize Milwaukee's Block Build convenes hundreds of volunteers to complete home repairs.

Last updated on March 17th, 2020 at 01:32 pm

The Zilber Family Foundation announced it has awarded 18 grants totaling more than $3.5 million to Milwaukee nonprofit organizations.

The grants support local organizations focused on affordable housing and community economic development in the Zilber Neighborhood Initiative’s three targeted neighborhoods: Lindsay Heights, Clarke Square and Layton Boulevard West. Additional grants support organizations focused on youth development and basic human needs

“These grants reflect our board’s belief that neighborhood development must be driven by the community,” said Gina Stilp, executive director of the Zilber Family Foundation. “We strive to partner with the people and organizations living and working in neighborhoods to address big issues such as affordable housing and commercial revitalization. We can be most effective by working together.”

Four ZNI grants, valued at $890,000, focused on housing:

  • $200,000 to Community Advocates to increase access to safe, affordable and quality housing in ZNI neighborhoods. Grant funds support individuals experiencing homelessness; emergency housing support for individuals and families at risk of eviction; and the Healthy Housing Initiative to increase affordable, quality housing.
  • $50,000 to Community Warehouse to increase access to home improvement and household materials for residents of ZNI neighborhoods.
  • $40,000 to Metro Milwaukee Mediation Services, Inc. (Mediate Milwaukee) to support housing mediation services that help prevent evictions and foreclosures. Mediate Milwaukee works to prevent evictions by providing voluntary, free, confidential, one-on-one conflict coaching and joint mediation sessions with landlords, tenants and trained mediators.
  • $600,000 to Revitalize Milwaukee to support a home improvement matching grant program in the Clarke Square neighborhood, and to provide free home repairs for low-income, elderly, veteran, or disabled homeowners in all three ZNI neighborhoods. Repairs include accessibility modifications, emergency repairs such as furnace or water heater replacement, and critical repairs to flooring, stairs and plumbing.

The latest round of grants also included renewed support for Walnut Way, Clarke Square Neighborhood Initiative and Layton Boulevard West Neighbors, totaling $1.48 million. Eight grants focused on neighborhood improvements, such as commercial corridor development, access to low-cost financing, financial literacy and resident and community engagement.

The foundation also awarded grants totaling $155,000 to three nonprofit organizations in Hawaii. Those grants support the Hawaii Alliance for Arts in Education, Mental Health America of Hawaii, and Project Vision Hawaii. Zilber Family Foundation awards a number of targeted grants in Hawaii annually.

The foundation was formed in 1961 as a private grant-making institution by the late real estate developer Joseph Zilber.

A full list of 2019 grant recipients is available here.

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