For Immediate Release: April 21, 2009
Contact: Jennifer Laurelli
Director of Development
(401) 273-5437  ext. 120
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Kresge Foundation Challenges Children’s Museum

The Kresge Foundation, one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious private foundations, has approved a challenge grant of $150,000 to Providence Children’s Museum’s Play Works Campaign for Kids

Signaling the importance of affirming and strengthening philanthropic support for nonprofits in times of crisis, the trustees of The Kresge Foundation awarded nearly $73 million in grants in the first quarter of 2009.  Providence Children’s Museum was the only Rhode Island organization to be selected and one of only four award recipients in New England.  

The awards represent the largest quarterly commitment in the 85-year-old foundation’s history.  “As a large, private foundation, our time to lead is now,” says Elaine D. Rosen, chair of the board of trustees. “It is tempting to look at a reduction in our assets and fall back into a cautious, defensive posture. But we have decided that we must instead step forward, investing where we can to strengthen the social safety net without sacrificing our long-term objectives.”

The Kresge Challenge Grant Program supports nonprofit organizations that are experienced in delivering effective programs, have talented and motivated leadership, and possess the ability to mobilize resources to achieve sustainable transformation. 

“Successfully applying for and meeting a Kresge Challenge is a rigorous process,” said Museum executive director Janice O’Donnell.  “This award affirms the Museum’s goals to provide the best possible learning environment for Rhode Island children and families of all backgrounds and confirms the viability of our capital campaign.  It’s gratifying to know that Kresge recognizes the Museum’s fiscal responsibility, our value to the community, as evidenced by record attendance, and especially our commitment to the underserved.”

The Museum’s Play Works Campaign is a comprehensive capital and endowment campaign.  Its short-term goal is to raise $1.5 million for major building renovations and three new hands-on learning environments. The Kresge Challenge grant will be awarded when the Museum’s Campaign reaches 90 percent of its capital projects goal.

For kids.  For families.  For the future.  Play a part! 
The Play Works Campaign for Kids will allow Providence Children’s Museum to add vibrant new learning environments; strengthen its role as a trusted child development resource; secure long-term financial stability; and continue its leadership and innovation as advocates and educators for children and families.
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