CF Insights asks a very simple but important question: "What if each community foundation could know what all community foundations collectively know?" This collection features research produced and funded by community foundations, and other resources relevant to the field. Contact us at cfinsights@candid.org and visit us at cfinsights.candid.org.

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Black Funding Denied: Community Foundation Support for Black Communities

August 1, 2020

In light of the national uprising sparked by the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor (and building on other recent tragic movement moments going back to the 2014 murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri), NCRP is analyzing grantmaking by community foundations across the country to find out exactly how much they are – or are not – investing in Black communities.We started by looking at the latest available grantmaking data (2016-2018) of 25 community foundations (CFs) – from Los Angeles to New Orleans to New York City to St. Paul. These foundations represent a cross section of some of the country's largest community foundations as well as foundations in communities where NCRP has Black-led nonprofit allies.

Arts Infusion Initiative, 2010-15: Evaluation Report

March 6, 2016

For youth involved in the criminal justice system, a better future depends on improving their social and emotional learning skills -- skills like conflict resolution, career readiness and preparation for the future. An assessment by the Urban Institute shows how the Arts Infusion Initiative helped achieve just that for young people detained in the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC), and for high-risk youth in the Lawndale, Little Village, Back of the Yards and South Shore communities. From 2010 to 2015, this catalytic approach to restoring the peace for Chicago's youth supported 14 nonprofits providing teens with rigorous arts instruction, infused with social and emotional learning goals. Funded by The Chicago Community Trust, the $2.5 million Initiative built collaborations with the Chicago Police Department, Chicago Public Schools, and Northwestern and Loyola Universities. The Urban Institute's mixed-method evaluation (2.9MB), commissioned by the National Guild for Community Arts Education with funding from the Trust, concluded that "the fields of education, juvenile justice and family and youth services can benefit tremendously from the emergent approaches embodied in the Arts Infusion Initiative." Among the successes their research revealed:Participants showed substantial improvements in social and emotional learning skills, as measured by conflict resolution, future orientation, critical response and career readiness. Improvements ranged from 27% in conflict resolution and career readiness, to 29% for critical response and 36% for future orientation.The initiative helped foster collaboration between program directors, public schools, community policing and the detention center. Examples include the Trust and the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy program working together to open a high-tech digital music lab at JTDC. Chicago Public Schools' plan for a new Digital Arts Career Academy for at-risk and court-involved high school youth is a direct result of the positive effects Arts Infusion had on youth, and of the relationship forged between CPS and the Trust.The program exposed at-risk youth to new skills and technologies that opened their minds to a positive future. Arts Infusion grants enabled many participating programs to purchase -- often for the first time -- modern, professional-grade equipment to which many youth had never been exposed. Better Boys Foundation used its funding to purchase enough modern film lab equipment to serve a full 17-student class -- previous classes had only one camera to share among all students.

Racism's Toll: Report on Illinois Poverty

February 3, 2016

Poverty rates are two to three times higher for Illinoisans of color, and people of color fare far worse on nearly every measure of well-being. In the latest of its annual reports on poverty, "Racism's Toll," Heartland Alliance's Social IMPACT Research Center lays bare the moral, human, and economic cost of the deep inequities in the state and calls out public policies that have and are actively creating these racial inequities.

Racism's Toll: Report on Illinois Poverty Released

February 3, 2016

Poverty rates are two to three times higher for Illinoisans of color, and people of color fare far worse on nearly every measure of well-being. In the latest of its annual reports on poverty, "Racism's Toll," Heartland Alliance's Social IMPACT Research Center lays bare the moral, human, and economic cost of the deep inequities in the state and calls out public policies that have and are actively creating these racial inequities.

On the Table: 2015 Impact Report

September 28, 2015

As the kickoff to The Chicago Community Trust's Centennial, "On the Table 2015" marked the beginning of a yearlong campaign to celebrate philanthropy in all its forms -- giving of time, treasure and talent. The Trust's Centennial goal was ambitious; to spark a civic movement that will make the Chicagoland region the most philanthropic in the nation. On May 12, 2015, thousands of Chicagoland residents gathered together across the region to share a meal and celebrate the everyday philanthropists among us who strengthen our communities and improve the lives of others. Participants in these On the Table conversations were asked not only to discuss ideas for improving our communities, but also to make a commitment to work collectively or independently to improve our communities and inspire others to do the same. Again this year, the Trust invited the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement (IPCE) to partner and assess the impact of On the Table. The report results are based on the responses of those who participated in this year's survey. Highlights include key discussion themes, as well as surveyed participants' thoughts on commitments to future civic engagement.

Poor by Comparison: Report on Illinois Poverty

January 29, 2015

A report that examines how Illinois compares to other states on over 25 key metrics associated with poverty and hardship. In addition to addressing the state budget's structural deficit and tax policy, the report offers additional recommendations that, if implemented, would help ensure the people of Illinois can live the best lives possible and make Illinois more competitive in the process.

Data Matters: Chicago's Babies

October 31, 2014

October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. The Social IMPACT Research Center took a look at infant mortality rates and low birth weight rates of Chicago Community Areas and compared these data to the public health goals as outlined in the Chicago Department of Public Health's Healthy Chicago 2020 agenda, to see how Chicago babies were faring on these health indicators.

On The Table 2014 Impact Report

October 7, 2014

In every Chicago neighborhood and many suburban communities, thousands of residents came together to break bread and discuss how to collaboratively build and maintain strong, safe and dynamic communities. This report summarizes conversations based on a wide variety of data collected by or made available to the Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement (IPCE) and addresses three major questions IPCE posed to understand the impact of the initiative: who participated, what was discussed, and how were participants impacted by the conversations? These conversations were intended to provide a platform for partnering with and inspiring participants, organizations, and institutions in the region to take action to improve quality of life and to build a more sustainable future for the Chicago region.

Chicago Neighborhood Indicators 2000-2012

May 2, 2014

Key statistics for Chicago neighborhoods from 2000-2012, including the following indicators:Chicago Community Areas by Race and EthnicityIndividuals in Households with Incomes below 100% FPL (Poverty)Individuals in Households with Incomes below 50% FPL (Extreme Poverty)Individuals in Households with Incomes from 100 to 199% FPL (Low Income)Educational Attainment of Population Age 25+Renter Households Paying Over 30% of Income on Housing CostsRenter Households Paying Over 50% of Income on Housing CostsHouseholds Receiving Cash Public AssistanceHouseholds Receiving SNAP (Food Stamps)Employment Status of the Population Age 16+Poverty Status by Family Type

50 Years Later: Report on Illinois Poverty

January 31, 2014

America holds a long-cherished reputation as a land of opportunity. Yet 50 years ago, more than one in five Americans lived in poverty. To combat this soaring inequality, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a War on Poverty in his 1964 State of the Union address. The War on Poverty was part and parcel of Johnson's Great Society, a set of programs and policies designed to tackle social problems of the day. Fifty years later, how much progress has been made?Half a century after our country committed to an "unconditional war on poverty," it's high time to recalibrate the war to fit 2014 realities. To that end, this report provides an unprecedented snapshot of the last 50 years and uses data on the modern face of poverty in Illinois to inform the retooling of existing solutions and spur new innovations to help end poverty.

Poverty Matters: It's Now 50/50, Chicago Region Poverty Growth is a Suburban Story

September 5, 2013

Nationwide, the number of people in poverty in the suburbs has now surpassed the number of people in poverty in central cities. Cities have long been thought to be home to the most and worst poverty. However, in the past several decades, the suburbs have experienced the greatest growth in poverty. In this brief, the Social IMPACT Research Center examines the distribution of poverty in Chicago and the suburbs over two decades. The findings suggest that from 1990 to 2011, poverty grew much more in the suburbs than in Chicago, and consequently, poverty became more equally distributed between Chicago and the suburbs.

Illinois's 33%: Report on Illinois Poverty

January 1, 2013

This report explores key questions about poverty: Why does it exist? Who is at risk? Which communities are most affected? And, what are some solutions?