The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation has put its stamp all over Detroit, investing millions of dollars in grants for a wide swath of projects.
Its biggest so far is the $100 million dedicated to building a new park at the West Riverfront Park site, which is to be renamed Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Centennial Park. More recently, the foundation presented the Boys & Girls Club of Southeastern Michigan with a $2 million grant.
Also recently announced is a $10 million grant for Invest Detroit, the nonprofit tasked with administering the city’s Strategic Neighborhood Fund.
The money will support the Strategic Neighborhood Fund over the next five years.
"This initiative is doing crucially important work to help boost these Detroit neighborhoods and create momentum that will spread to even more neighborhoods, ensuring that residents across the city live in thriving communities," says Lavea Brachman, The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation’s vice president of programs.
"The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation is proud to be helping with this key initiative and to partner with Mayor Duggan’s administration and Invest Detroit."
The Strategic Neighborhood Fund invests in place-based projects on the neighborhood level, focusing on improving commercial corridors, streetscapes, and parks.
Focus neighborhoods include Jefferson Chalmers, Warrendale/Cody-Rouge, Campau//Davison/Banglatown, East Warren/Cadieux, Grand River Northwest, Gratiot/Seven Mile, Russell Woods/Nardin Park, Islandview/Greater Villages, Southwest/Vernor, and Livernois-McNichols.
"The Strategic Neighborhood Fund is a true public-private-philanthropic partnership," says Dave Blaszkiewicz, president and CEO of Invest Detroit.
"We are already seeing more investment in Detroit’s neighborhoods than we have in decades, and this will lead to economic growth that brings more jobs, residents, and investment. The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation investment will help to leverage the growing momentum we are seeing into even further and more sustained progress."
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