In 2017, nine philanthropic organizations from across the country received charitable grants from Gannett | USA TODAY NETWORK and the Gannett Foundation as part of the company’s “A Community Thrives” (ACT) program.
Gannett | USA TODAY NETWORK launched A Community Thrives (ACT) last year to focus on helping local communities and funding great ideas that do so. In its first year, the program received more than 900 video submissions, each of which had unique and inspiring ideas centered around one of three categories: wellness, education or arts and culture. The nation voted on its favorite ideas and helped determine the finalists. Ultimately, the Gannett Foundation chose the top nine ideas and gave away a total of $600,000 in grants.
In its second year, A Community Thrives will be giving away another $600,000 in grants to help fund charitable ideas centered around wellness, education or arts and culture. USA TODAY NETWORK is also adding a fun twist to the program in 2018: Users will once again submit ideas on how to improve their community; however, submissions will be done through CrowdRise, a crowdsourcing platform owned by GoFundMe. Twelve grants will be selected and awarded by the Gannett Foundation based on viability, sustainability and impact. Entrants will be encouraged to raise as much money as possible through their ACT CrowdRise page, and campaigns that raise the most money will be given additional grants from the Gannett Foundation.
“We believe by adding a crowdsourcing component to A Community Thrives, we have an exciting opportunity to use the power of our network to make an even larger impact on local communities,” says Andy Yost, USA TODAY NETWORK’s chief marketing officer. “Not only will the Gannett Foundation be giving grants to select causes, but the money raised across all CrowdRise campaigns will go to the associated charities. This allows even more money to go to great organizations who are making a difference in communities across our country.”
Grant recipients from 2017 are excited about the program and have already noticed the impact it can make on communities. Kimberly Baker, director of development for Valiant Cross Academy who received a grant in 2017, says: “A Community Thrives greatly impacted our community. It was like the entire city was rallying behind us. … When we announced we had won, you would have thought our home team had won the national championship.”
If you have an idea on how to improve your community, you can submit it to A Community Thrives here. Submissions are open until March 15. Grants will be awarded in early June.
About Gannett Foundation
The Gannett Foundation is a corporate foundation sponsored by Gannett Co., Inc., and serves to link our corporate mission and purpose with the communities in which we operate. Through its Community Grants and A Community Thrives programs, Gannett Foundation supports nonprofit activities impacting residents in the communities in which Gannett does business. Through its other initiatives, the Foundation invests in the future of the media industry and encourages employee giving and volunteerism.
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