Zilber Family Foundation awards $3 million in grants to Milwaukee nonprofits

Supporting efforts in Lindsay Heights, Clarke Square and Layton Boulevard West

Acts Housing's office at 2414 W. Vliet St.

The Zilber Family Foundation announced it has awarded 23 grants totaling more than $3 million to Milwaukee nonprofit organizations.

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

Additional grants support the foundation’s legacy programs, which include organizations focused on youth development and basic human needs.

Since 2008, the foundation has invested more than $50 million in improving its three targeted neighborhoods through the Zilber Neighborhood Initiative.

“Thanks to the good work of our nonprofit partners, together we realized significant accomplishments in the first ten years of the Initiative,” said Marcy Jackson, president of the Zilber Family Foundation board of directors. “There is still work to be done, and we remain committed to the initiative as our primary focus for the next five years, particularly in the critical areas of housing and economic development.”

Recently awarded grants include:

  • $80,000 to Fondy Food Center to expand support for small family farmers and local food entrepreneurs, and improving healthy food access at the Fondy Farmers Market in Lindsay Heights. Ongoing improvements to the market and the adjacent Fondy Park will allow for the expansion of small businesses, evening markets and pop-up events in partnership with residents and neighborhood-based organizations.
  • $200,000 to support Financial Opportunity Centers at Journey House, Milwaukee JobsWork and Riverworks Development Corporation. FOCs are career and financial coaching service centers that help low- to moderate-income people build smart money habits and focus on improving their financial bottom line.
  • $200,000 to ACTS Housing to support affordable homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income families in ZNI neighborhoods.
  • $150,000 to Housing Resources, Inc. to support homebuyer education and counseling services for low-and moderate-income families in ZNI neighborhoods.

Recently awarded legacy grants include:

  • $150,000 to Guest House of Milwaukee to support housing, shelter, education and other services to address root causes of homelessness and help clients maintain or sustain personal autonomy and independent living.
  • $300,000 to Neu-Life Community Development to support year-round programs for youth and young adults. Neu-Life’s after-school and summer programs are focused on academic enrichment, creative arts, health and wellness, gardening and nutrition, leadership development and civic engagement.

Additional ZNI and legacy grants were awarded to Artists Working in Education, Cathedral Center, Data You Can Use, LISC Milwaukee, Meta House, Milwaukee Center for Independence, North Avenue/Fond du Lac Marketplace BID #32, Penfield Children’s Center, Playworks, Riveredge Nature Center, Ronald Reagan IB High School, Safe & Sound, Wisconsin Voices and Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corp.

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

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