Shepherd Community Center Receives Grant from Lilly Endowment to Strengthen Stability

Press Release (ePRNews.com) - Indianapolis, IN - Jan 19, 2017 - ​​​Shepherd Community Center has received a grant of $7.5 million as part of Lilly Endowment Inc.’s commitment to helping human service organizations that strive to improve the lives of low-income individuals and families and strengthen their communities in Indianapolis and throughout the state.

Shepherd will use Lilly Endowment’s generous grant to increase their capacity through facility improvements including the expansion of their farm services and the creation of an energy efficient kitchen and facilities. Shepherd will also be able to focus its fundraising efforts toward program needs thanks to Lilly Endowment’s support of facility costs and management, helping to create increased opportunity for Shepherd staff to engage new donors and federal grant makers.

This grant is truly transformational, as it insures our ability to help families break the cycle of poverty for coming decades. It is built upon the sacrificial giving of more than 2500 givers who for more than 31 years has invested in the lives of those we serve in the near-eastside of Indianapolis. Much has been accomplished and this gift ensures more in the days and years ahead.

Jay Height, Shepherd Community Center CEO

Shepherd Community Center CEO, Jay Height said, “This grant is truly transformational, as it insures our ability to help families break the cycle of poverty for coming decades. It is built upon the sacrificial giving of more than 2500 givers who for more than 31 years has invested in the lives of those we serve in the near-eastside of Indianapolis. Much has been accomplished and this gift ensures more in the days and years ahead.“

Lilly Endowment is making a total of $100 million in grants to 15 organizations through this initiative to help them enhance their long-term impact by building stronger financial futures. Many of the organizations will use their grants to establish endowments or fortify an existing endowment so they can have more flexibility and greater capacity to work strategically. These grants complement Lilly Endowment’s regular support for human service organizations, including grants to the United Way of Central Indiana.

The organizations provide a variety of services to help low-income individuals and families. Ten of the grants are supporting community/neighborhood centers. Five of the grants will help organizations that frequently collaborate with community centers, providing counseling and other mental health services; food programs; daytime services to homeless individuals and families; and education, employment and health services.

“The grants offer transformative opportunities for the organizations to secure strong financial futures,” said Ace Yakey, Lilly Endowment’s vice president for community development. “Unlike support for day-to-day operations, these funds will help each organization strengthen its financial infrastructure so it can serve more people over the long-term and weather unexpected financial challenges. These grants do not alleviate the need for the organizations to attract ongoing support for their efforts. Indeed, we hope the grants will help them more effectively attract support for their important work.”

Lilly Endowment selected Shepherd Community Center and the others in the initiative because they are critical to community efforts to serve at-risk residents in their neighborhoods. By doing so they help build social capital, which is critical for addressing the range of challenges neighborhoods face.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family – J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons J.K. Jr. and Eli – through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly & Company. The Endowment is primarily committed to the causes of community development, education and religion and has a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and its home state, Indiana.

Contact:

Jay Height
jayh@shepherdcommunity.org
317-375-0203

Source : Shepard Community Center

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