Kenneth Rainin Foundation http://krfoundation.org Enhancing Life. Tue, 25 Jul 2017 18:41:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 Kenneth Rainin Foundation Address Oakland, CA United States Contact Business Information Ted Russell Appointed Associate Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures http://krfoundation.org/ted-russell-appointed-associate-director-arts/ Mon, 17 Jul 2017 18:24:38 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24666 Oakland, Calif. – The Kenneth Rainin Foundation announced the appointment of Ted Russell as Associate Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures. Russell joins the Foundation with high-level arts management expertise developed through years working as an artist and arts marketing executive as well as a grantmaker. Russell will work in partnership with Shelley Trott, Director […]

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Oakland, Calif. – The Kenneth Rainin Foundation announced the appointment of Ted Russell as Associate Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures. Russell joins the Foundation with high-level arts management expertise developed through years working as an artist and arts marketing executive as well as a grantmaker.

Ted RussellRussell will work in partnership with Shelley Trott, Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures to develop and implement new initiatives, help manage the Arts Program’s portfolio and advance learning and evaluation processes, including documenting and sharing knowledge about promising practices.

“Ted’s career reflects a deep understanding of the issues that affect the arts ecosystem and a commitment to transforming communities through the power of the arts,” said Shelley Trott, Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures, Kenneth Rainin Foundation. “His expertise will further the Foundation’s work to create opportunities and build stronger support systems for visionary artists.”

Russell’s experience includes a decade serving as the Senior Program Officer for the Arts Program at the James Irvine Foundation. Prior to that, he had a variety of leadership and management roles at Montalvo Arts Center, San Francisco Symphony, La Jolla Playhouse and Malashock Dance.

“I am honored to join the Rainin Foundation on the leading edge of the field as we support the Bay Area as a center for experimentation in the arts,” said Ted Russell. “At this turbulent time, when artists and the arts are challenged locally and nationally as never before, I couldn’t be more excited to join an innovative team committed to keeping arts in the Bay Area thriving.”

Russell holds both an MBA in Arts Management from the Anderson School of Management at the University of California, Los Angeles and a BA in Mechanical Engineering from Yale University.

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Transparency Talk http://krfoundation.org/transparency-talk/ Thu, 13 Jul 2017 17:46:09 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24607 The post Transparency Talk appeared first on Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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The Rainin Foundation’s senior communications officer, Mandy Flores-Witte, was invited to share her thoughts about foundation transparency in Glasspockets’  Knowledge Sharing Champions #OpenForGood series. Read her post below. 

Originally published by Glasspockets.

Transparency and the Art of Storytelling

Foundations are uniquely poised to support higher-risk projects, and as a result, failures can happen. Recently, I was searching online for examples on how to share the story about a grant that had some unexpected outcomes and found that, while the field strives to be transparent, it can still be a challenge to learn about initiatives that didn’t go as planned.

Communicating about a project doesn’t always have to happen in a scholarly report or detailed analysis, or by hiring experts to produce an evaluation. Sharing what you learned can be as simple as telling a story.

Embracing the Facts and Checking Our Ego

When the Rainin Foundation funded our first public art installation in San Francisco’s Central Market, a busy neighborhood undergoing a significant economic transformation, we knew it was an experiment with risks. The art installation’s large platform, swing, and see saw were designed to get neighborhood residents, tech workers, customers of local businesses, and visitors — people spanning the economic spectrum—to interact. There’s no doubt that the project succeeded at bringing people together. But after seven months, it was relocated to a different part of the city because of complaints and safety concerns about the types of people and activities it attracted.

These issues were addressed at several community meetings—meetings that helped build stronger relationships among project stakeholders such as city departments, businesses, artists, local nonprofits, and neighbors. We were disappointed that the project did not go as planned, but we were amazed to see how one public art installation could spark so many conversations and also be a platform for exposing the city’s social issues. We knew we had to share what we learned. Or put another way, we saw an opportunity to be #OpenForGood.

Read the full story on Glasspockets’ blog. 

Amanda Flores-Witte

Amanda Flores-Witte

Senior Communications Officer

Mandy is responsible for directing the Rainin Foundation's communications, and media and public relations. Read more.

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RISE Community School is Reaching New Heights…and the Kids Win! http://krfoundation.org/rise-community-school-reaching-new-heights/ Wed, 12 Jul 2017 23:00:07 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24527 The post RISE Community School is Reaching New Heights…and the Kids Win! appeared first on Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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On a June morning, RISE Community School students whooped with pride having just beaten their teachers in a spirited game of dodgeball. Cheers, high fives, and hugs abounded on the playground.

RISE Hi FiveThis dodgeball victory wasn’t the only way these kids won big this year. The scholars in transitional kindergarten, kindergarten, and first grade classrooms are also part of a palpable transformation at this East Oakland elementary school.

The Rainin Foundation has supported this transformation by supporting RISE Community School teachers with an Early Common Core Teacher Leader that will help them build the decoding, language, academic vocabulary, and comprehension skills of transitional kindergarten to first grade students. Our shared goal is to ensure that the children become joyful learners, successful readers, and critical thinkers as they grow.

Margaret Goldberg, Early Common Core Teacher Leader, says, “For many years children came to our school with vast unmet needs. The narrative was that the children came in low on academic skills and left our school low on academic skills. But when we look at the data, it was worse than that. They came in behind and left even further behind.” In fact, standardized test scores and assessments reveal that fewer than 10% of children were meeting grade level benchmarks.”

RISE Community School’s Team of Teachers

Ms. Pollak high fives a student after spending time reading with her while other students pair up to read together.

Ms. Goldberg and Principal Samantha Keller are changing that narrative. Ms. Keller says, “Now, the teachers are a true team. They have worked together to teach with new tools and curricula. They also frequently assess children’s progress, learn and collaborate together, and even share students who need specialized support.”

Furthermore, their success lifts up all the children at all grade levels. Ms. DeMara, a kindergarten teacher says, “When our RISE scholars enter second and third grade and are performing at grade level, our teachers are able to lead the kids in more focused work and raise the expectations of the class’ performance. Consequently, all of the students do better.”

100%

of transitional kindergarten students at RISE Community School were on target for later reading success in 2016.

The results of these efforts are monumental. In 2015, just 3% of kindergarten students were on target for later reading success. Last spring in 2016, after the RISE team had focused on transitional kindergarten and kindergarten children, the results were drastically different: 100% of transitional kindergarten students were on target for later reading success, and 73% of kindergarten students were at or above benchmark.

These successes persist as the children move to higher grades. As a result, this spring, the school saw a huge boost in the number of first graders who are meeting benchmarks.

RISE Community School’s Secret to Growth

The secret to growth is clear to Ms. Van Rosumm, a kindergarten teacher. “We just weren’t giving kids what they needed before. We needed a systematic focus to teach children their letter sounds and blending while also teaching comprehension through vocabulary, conversation, and reading aloud.”

Ms. DeMara adds, “Before RISE Community School, I watched as my kids struggled even as I did everything I knew to do. And my guilt got bigger every year as I watched them go through the grades with holes in their education. In contrast, I now have the tools to make sure they have a strong start. I am confident that these are children who have become great thinkers with strong skills.”

“I am confident that these are children who have become great thinkers with strong skills.”– Ms. DeMara, Kindergarten Teacher, RISE Community School

A mid-year writing sample from one of Ms. Ruiz’ students

Ms. Ruiz, a first grade teacher, agrees, “Look at this!” she exclaims when showing end of year writing. “My kids were not able to do this in prior years. They can do so much now! Never before have we understood so much about what our children need.”

“Next year’s focus on building oral language with the solid foundation in decoding skills will support children to read and think about increasingly complex texts throughout the grades.”– Samantha Keller, Principal, RISE Community School

While the focus is always the kids, it’s not just the kids who are winning. Ms. Kott’s transitional kindergarten class is active in art and language activities. She beams when they smile with pride in their accomplishments. She says, “Our kids are doing great, but it’s not just the children. We’re all growing and learning too. They may have beat us in dodgeball this morning, but we are all winning with the growth at RISE.”

Susan True

Susan True

Director, Education Strategy & Ventures

Susan’s work focuses on directing strategic initiatives and funding to increase the number of Oakland children who are ready for kindergarten and reading at grade level by the end of third grade.  Read more.

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Spring 2017 Filmmaking Grants Announced http://krfoundation.org/spring-2017-filmmaking-grants-announced/ Mon, 10 Jul 2017 23:59:38 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24574 San Francisco, CA — SFFILM, in partnership with the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, announced today the projects that will receive a total of $300,000 in funding in the latest round of SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants. Eight filmmaking teams were granted funding to help with the next stage of their creative process, from screenwriting to post-production. SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants are awarded […]

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San Francisco, CA — SFFILM, in partnership with the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, announced today the projects that will receive a total of $300,000 in funding in the latest round of SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants. Eight filmmaking teams were granted funding to help with the next stage of their creative process, from screenwriting to post-production. SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants are awarded twice annually to filmmakers whose narrative feature films will have significant economic or professional impact on the Bay Area filmmaking community and meaningfully explore pressing social issues. More than $4 million has been awarded since the launch of this grant program in 2009, making the SFFILM, in partnership with the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, the largest grant-maker for independent narrative films in the United States.

Applications are currently being accepted for the Fall 2017 round of SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants; the deadline to apply is August 11. For more information visit sffilm.org/makers.

The SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grant program has funded more than 50 projects since its inception, including Geremy Jasper’s Sundance breakthrough Patti Cake$, which is on its way to a July theatrical release; Alex and Andrew Smith’s Walking Out starring Matt Bomer and Josh Wiggins, which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival; Chloé Zhao’s Songs My Brothers Taught Me, which screened at Sundance and Cannes in 2015 and has created buzz across the international festival circuit; Short Term 12, Destin Cretton’s sophomore feature which won both the Narrative Grand Jury Award and Audience Award at South by Southwest 2013; Ryan Coogler’s debut feature Fruitvale Station, which won the 2014 Film Independent Spirit Award for Best First Feature, the Un Certain Regard Avenir Prize at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, and both the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award in the narrative category at Sundance 2013; and Ben Zeitlin’s debut phenomenon Beasts of the Southern Wild, which won Sundance’s Grand Jury Prize and Cannes’ Camera d’Or in 2012 and earned four Academy Award nominations (including Best Picture).

The panelists who reviewed the finalists’ submissions are Noah Cowan, SFFILM Executive Director; Patrick House, culture and science writer for Slate and The New Yorker; Caroline von Kühn, SFFILM Director of Artist Development; Shelley Trott, Director of Arts Strategy and Ventures at the Kenneth Rainin Foundation; and Tristen Tuckfield, film finance executive.

The jury noted in a statement: “This group of finalists was exceptionally strong, and we are thrilled to support these eight bold and deeply human films, which collectively represent such a wide range of tones, styles, voices, and artistic visions. These filmmakers showcase the ever-growing talent coming out of San Francisco, and their work will contribute to the growing strength, diversity, and richness of the Bay Area filmmaking community.”

Spring 2017 SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grant Winners

The Continental – Aron Kantor, writer/director; K.M. Soehnlein, cowriter – screenwriting – $25,000
A young, gay Latino immigrant working at New York’s legendary Continental Baths gets swept up in the burgeoning gay rights movement and the early disco scene while navigating an affair with his married boss.

Jinn – Nijla Mu’min, writer/director; Avril Speaks, producer – post-production – $50,000 
Summer is a carefree, Black teenage Instagram celebrity whose world is turned upside down when her mother abruptly converts to Islam and becomes a different person. At first resistant to the faith, she begins to reevaluate her identity after becoming attracted to a Muslim classmate, crossing the thin line between physical desire and piety.

Josephine – Beth de Araújo, writer/director – screenwriting – $25,000 
An obedient eight-year-old girl unintentionally witnesses a rape in Golden Gate Park. Unraveling with fear and paranoia, her subsequent violent outbursts put her family and classmates in jeopardy.

Music Moves Us – Cyrus Tabar, writer/director – screenwriting – $25,000 
In a near future where music is outlawed in an authoritarian state, a passionate woman and her friends throw illegal techno dance parties in Oakland, California, and broadcast on a bootleg pirate radio station to bring people together.

Refuge – Mohammad Gorjestani, writer/director; Malcolm Pullinger, producer – screenwriting – $25,000 
Set in 2025, Refuge depicts a brewing cyberwar between the US and Iran which puts Sonia, a young Iranian refugee and activist, at risk of deportation or internment. Her only escape may come at a greater price than she’s willing to pay.

A Rooster on the Fire Escape – Guetty Felin, writer/director/producer; Danielle Dreis, producer – packaging – $25,000 
Upon coming to America, the Celestin family was hopping to leave behind the traumas of the brutal dictatorship of their tropical native land, but the sacrifices they made for their freedom create a dark spiral from which they might not recover.

Sorry to Bother You – Boots Riley, writer/director; Jonathan Duffy, George Rush and Kelly Williams, producers – production – $75,000 
Sorry To Bother You tells the story of Cassius Green, a Black telemarketer who discovers a magical key to telemarketing success, propelling him into a macabre universe where he is selected to lead a species of genetically manipulated horse-people.

We the Animals – Jeremiah Zagar, writer/director; Jeremy Yaches and Christina King, producers – post-production – $50,000 
Based on the bestselling novel by Justin Torres, We the Animals explores the beautiful and savage nature of family and the viscerally charged landscape of youth through the eyes of Jonah, the youngest son of a mixed-race, working-class couple, as he discovers his artistic identity.

SFFILM / Rainin Filmmaking Grants are made possible by the generosity of the Kenneth Rainin Foundation. In addition to funding, grant recipients also receive various benefits through SFFILM Makers, SFFILM’s comprehensive artist development program. These benefits, customized to every individual production, can include one-on-one project consultations, creative development, additional fundraising assistance, resource and service recommendations, and networking opportunities, among many others. For more information visit sffilm.org/makers.

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What to Know: Our Upcoming Public Art Grants http://krfoundation.org/upcoming-public-art-grants/ Wed, 07 Jun 2017 21:00:42 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24087 The post What to Know: Our Upcoming Public Art Grants appeared first on Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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The Kenneth Rainin Foundation will be accepting Letters of Inquiry (LOIs) for our Open Spaces Program from June 26 to August 4, 2017. Over the past few months, we’ve reflected on our first application cycle and grants. In response, we’ve made adjustments to the program’s criteria to emphasize key priorities—actions that we think will add clarity and improve the public art grants program overall.

When the Rainin Foundation established the Open Spaces Program, we in no way wanted to be prescriptive about what public art can be. Our first Open Spaces grantees, announced in January 2017, illustrate the flexibility of the program to support a diversity of artistic practices, innovative explorations of timely issues, and deep community engagement processes. Supported projects range from community meals, networked sound sculptures and aerial dance performances. And, they touch on important issues such as resilience in communities of color, neighborhood transformation and climate change. We want the Open Spaces Program to be responsive to the many ways in which organizations and artists are working in the field of public art.

Attend an Info Session

Learn about the Rainin Foundation’s grants to support temporary, place-based public art projects in San Francisco and Oakland. Arts Program staff will be on hand to answer questions.

Oakland Workshop
Tuesday, June 13, 5:00 – 6:30 PM
Pro Arts Gallery | Reserve Your Spot

San Francisco Workshop
Wednesday, June 21, 4:30 – 6:00 PM
Root Division | Reserve Your Spot

Collaboration and Community

The core criteria of the Open Spaces Program haven’t shifted dramatically, but we have made some adjustments. We want to emphasize the following recommendations to highlight the importance of collaboration and the relevance of the project’s content to the communities it serves:

1. Partnerships should be mutually beneficial and authentic
A priority of the Open Spaces Program is to support the collaboration between a nonprofit organization and an artist or artist team in the creation of a temporary, place-based public art project in San Francisco or Oakland. This should be a mutually beneficial and authentic partnership in which the collaboration is central to the project’s development.

2. Projects need to be relevant to communities served
The Open Spaces program supports place-based projects that are accessible to the public. It is critical that projects’ content and concerns be rooted in the community it will serve, which can manifest in a myriad of ways. Competitive proposals will clearly express how the site selection and artistic vision speak to timely issues of relevance to the communities it serves.

From Pilot to Public Art Program

Sewing circle programming at “Block by Block.” Photo credit: Darryl Smith, Luggage Store Gallery

Our Open Spaces program evolved from Imagining Central Market, the Foundation’s 2014 pilot program. The goal of the program was to bring diverse communities together through an interactive public art project while celebrating Central Market’s burgeoning identity as an arts and technology district. The Luggage Store Gallery, a long-time Market Street tenant, was awarded the grant to illuminate murals and create an interactive bench installation, “Block by Block.” Located at Sixth and Market streets, it served as a meeting place in an under-resourced part of San Francisco, where public amenities such as seating have been historically lacking.

The project was successful in serving as a place for community members to gather. It also sparked important discussions around class and race, specifically in Central Market where the city’s socio-economic disparities come into sharp focus. Complaints about noise and illegal activity at the site ultimately led to the project’s removal; however, the insights we gained from this experience informed the shape of our Open Spaces Program. More importantly, it solidified desire to continue to support public art.

“Block by Block” was a feat of collaboration. One of the key takeaways was how engaging community members and stakeholders from the conception of a project, through its development and execution is critical to its success. It is essential to involve residents, city agencies, nonprofits and other partners from the project’s conception through its development and execution.

We look forward to learning how you will collaborate with and engage community through public art.

Open Spaces Program Overview

Visit the Open Spaces Program page and FAQ’s for more information on eligibility criteria and guidelines. Or contact Arts Program Staff with any questions.

  • Letters of Inquiry: Accepted Monday, June 26 – Friday, August 4, 2017 by 5 PM (PDT)
    A small group of finalists will be selected and each receive a $5,000 honorarium to further develop their proposals.
  • Full Proposals Deadline: Friday, October 27, 2017 by 5 PM (PDT)
  • Awards Announced: January 2018
  • Location of Projects: Oakland and San Francisco
  • Grant Range: $50,000—$200,000 per project
  • RSVP for a pre-application workshop
Adriana Griñó

Adriana Griñó

Program Associate, Arts

Adriana supports the arts team with grantmaking activities, and developing and implementing new initiatives. Read more.

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Rainin Foundation Awards over $500,000 in Arts Grants http://krfoundation.org/awards-555000-arts-grants/ Tue, 30 May 2017 09:38:41 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24315 The Kenneth Rainin Foundation has awarded over $500,000 in arts grants to 21 small and mid-size Bay Area organizations. Funding will support experimental dance, theater and multidisciplinary works, and ongoing programs for artists. This latest round of grants approved in May included awards ranging from $5,000 to $75,000. “We strive to bring new organizations into our grantmaking portfolio and are […]

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The Kenneth Rainin Foundation has awarded over $500,000 in arts grants to 21 small and mid-size Bay Area organizations. Funding will support experimental dance, theater and multidisciplinary works, and ongoing programs for artists.

This latest round of grants approved in May included awards ranging from $5,000 to $75,000.

“We strive to bring new organizations into our grantmaking portfolio and are delighted that six grantees are receiving our support for the first time,” said Shelley Trott, Rainin Foundation Director of Art Strategy and Ventures. “We’re also thrilled to support more projects that are pushing the boundaries of creative expression in Oakland.”

The New and Experimental Works (NEW) Program will help fund numerous performances, including 20 and 25 year anniversary productions by Capacitor and Scott Wells & Dancers, as well as an array of outdoor and site-specific projects in Oakland and San Francisco.

Art grants

Violeta Luna in “sanctuare” at La ALTERNATIVA’s FRESH Festival 2017. Photo credit: Robbie Sweeny.

The RENEW Program awarded multi-year grants to four organizations with ongoing programs for artists to experiment and develop new work.

“Our RENEW grantees are facilitating the artistic process and encouraging exchange among artists. These programs enable the artistic community to create new works, and advance our goal of a more vibrant Bay Area arts ecosystem,” said Trott.

Upcoming Arts Grants Opportunities

The Rainin Foundation is accepting Letters of Inquiry for our NEW Program from June 5–July 14, 2017, and our Open Spaces Program from June 26–August 4, 2017.

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Grant Opportunity for Collaborative Research Projects http://krfoundation.org/grants-collaborative-research-projects/ Fri, 26 May 2017 19:12:46 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24225 The post Grant Opportunity for Collaborative Research Projects appeared first on Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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Top photo: The Kenneth Rainin Foundation complements its grants with an annual Innovations Symposium, which brings together scientific leaders to move Inflammatory Bowel Disease research forward. Photo credit: Stephanie Secrest.

Oakland, Calif. – The Kenneth Rainin Foundation has announced that it will accept applications for its Synergy Awards program from June 2 through October 2, 2017. The awards will fund teams of health investigators to pursue unconventional, collaborative research projects that will advance the study of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

“The spirit of this award is to forge transformative collaborations,” said Laura Wilson, PhD, Director of Health Strategy and Ventures for the Rainin Foundation. “By bringing together teams of researchers to pursue groundbreaking methodologies, we hope to catalyze discoveries that will enable us to predict and prevent IBD.”

“By encouraging synergistic projects, we will develop connections and networks that will benefit not only patients with IBD, but the scientific community as a whole.”– Laura Wilson, PhD, Director of Health Strategy and Ventures

The Synergy Awards program supports teams of up to three investigators to pursue multidisciplinary, collaborative research projects for a maximum award of $100,000 per investigator, up to $300,000. The grants will fund basic, translational and clinical science projects, and encourage collaboration among scientists, clinicians and industry partners.

Applications must demonstrate that the proposed research could not be achieved without collaboration. “By encouraging synergistic projects, we will develop connections and networks that will benefit not only patients with IBD, but the scientific community as a whole,” said Wilson.

Proposals will be accepted through the Foundation’s online application system. The program is open to researchers from any nonprofit research institution worldwide. View complete program information, eligibility requirements and application guidelines.

Symposium Advances Understanding of IBD

Complementing its scientific research funding, the Foundation will host its sixth annual Innovations Symposium on July 24–25, 2017, in San Francisco. This event brings together scientific leaders, trainees, researchers and clinicians from around the world to encourage dialogue and advance the understanding of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

This year’s Symposium will broadly focus on early onset IBD and feature international speakers and Rainin Foundation grantees who will present their work. Additionally, it will include a panel discussion to provide an opportunity for investigators to get acquainted with industry representatives who are working in translational science. For more information, visit krfoundation.org/symposium.

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May 2017 http://krfoundation.org/may-2017/ Wed, 24 May 2017 17:19:04 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24255 Our May newsletter features our 2016 Turning Points: Year in Review report. See how we’re lifting up Bay Area arts and artists and helping Oakland’s youngest learners to flourish, and read about the quest to predict and prevent Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

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Our May newsletter features our 2016 Turning Points: Year in Review report. See how we’re lifting up Bay Area arts and artists and helping Oakland’s youngest learners to flourish, and read about the quest to predict and prevent Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

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2016 Turning Points: Year in Review http://krfoundation.org/2016-turning-points-year-review/ Tue, 23 May 2017 21:58:05 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=23981 The post 2016 Turning Points: Year in Review appeared first on Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

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Top photo: An Oakland student reacts during a tutoring session to boost literacy skills. Photo credit: Lori Halloran Media

A Message from our CEO

Jennifer Rainin, PhD Chief Executive Officer Kenneth Rainin Foundation

Jennifer Rainin, PhD

I am thrilled to share our report, 2016 Turning Points: Year in Review. An incredible year, 2016 had a much different quality compared to our earlier years. In the beginning, we worked to immerse ourselves in our communities, to envision the direction of our program areas, and to build our infrastructure to serve most effectively. We laid our groundwork and defined strategies—fertilizing the soil and planting seeds—so that now we are seeing our work bear fruit.

The Kenneth Rainin Foundation is uniquely positioned to provide support to pioneering ventures that, by nature, are less proven and even high risk. But big risk can also bring big rewards. We choose partners who we believe have the best chance to succeed and engage with them early, at the time of greatest need. When our grantees are successful, they thrive— increasing their capacity to continue their work and make breakthrough accomplishments. Even when high-risk projects do not achieve anticipated results, innovative work has intrinsic value; every project, every study, every engagement, every experiment informs the field and provides important information, data, and experience from which the next endeavor benefits.

This year’s report reflects our institutional coming of age as a growing foundation passionate about our mission: enhancing quality of life by championing the arts, promoting early childhood literacy, and supporting research to cure chronic disease. > Read more 

Explore our Turning Points Report

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Rainin Foundation Awards Over $1.4 Million in Education Grants http://krfoundation.org/rainin-foundation-awards-1-4-million-education-grants/ Mon, 22 May 2017 17:23:08 +0000 http://krfoundation.org/?p=24149 Above: SEEDS of Learning teachers and tutors in Oakland. The Kenneth Rainin Foundation awarded more than $1.4 million in education grants in May to five organizations that are dedicated to unlocking potential in Oakland’s youngest learners. The Rainin Foundation believes every Oakland child should enter kindergarten ready to learn and read at or above grade level […]

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Above: SEEDS of Learning teachers and tutors in Oakland.

The Kenneth Rainin Foundation awarded more than $1.4 million in education grants in May to five organizations that are dedicated to unlocking potential in Oakland’s youngest learners.

The Rainin Foundation believes every Oakland child should enter kindergarten ready to learn and read at or above grade level by the end of third grade. We know that children learn through relationships, which is why the Foundation invests significantly in supporting the adults who love and teach them most.

“We are focused on helping Oakland children develop the language, literacy and social-emotional skills and enthusiasm to be prepared for kindergarten and beyond,” said Susan True, Director of Education Strategy & Ventures at the Rainin Foundation. “We are honored to continue deepening our partnerships and investing in families, teachers, and community members to deliver the best possible early childhood experiences.”

Preparing Oakland Children for Kindergarten and Beyond

Community Based Organization and School Grants

Aspire Public Schools ($83,115) to support  SEEDS of Learning for transitional kindergarten (TK) and TK/kindergarten combo classrooms, at five Aspire Public Schools. SEEDS is an evidence-based, eight month professional development program for teachers that includes materials, classroom tutor resources and ongoing coaching support.

Springboard Collaborative leads a five-week summer school program with daily reading instruction for nearly 1,300 kindergarten to fourth grade students. Photo credit: Ana Homonnay

Education for Change ($926,179) for five Education for Change elementary schools to support improving core instruction and literacy supports for 900 transitional kindergartners to first grade students and their teachers. Funding includes: transitional kindergarten to first grade focused literacy coaches, tutor resources and a facilitated monthly professional learning community for site leaders and teachers to support data analysis and application of evidence-based literacy practices that help children secure the skills they need to be on track for reading success.

Roses in Concrete Community School ($98,908) to fund a second year of a teacher development and assessment system project that triangulates: 1. community-specific “Indicators of Impact,” 2. teacher effectiveness, and 3. classic academic indicators (CA State Achievement data). Data will be used to design teacher growth plans and to measure the impacts of teacher development on teacher performance and student outcomes.

Springboard Collaborative—Summer ($275,000) for a 5-week summer school program with daily reading instruction for 1,290 rising kindergarten to fourth grade students from 11 district and charter schools. The program includes weekly workshops that train parents to teach reading at home, teacher professional development and coaching, and home visits.

Tandem ($75,000) for the StoryCycles take home book bag program, to provide access to books for 198 transitional kindergarten and preschool classrooms and over 3,600 children and their families.

Learn more about our Education grantmaking.

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