The Spartanburg County Foundation is a trusted philanthropic leader with a rich history and track record of engaging people, institutions, and resources to collaboratively address Spartanburg County’s most critical indicators. The Foundation’s ability to build relationships across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors has enabled us to effectively engage the community in creating long-term, positive change. Below are some of the Foundation’s key leadership efforts:
The Foundation plays a unique role in connecting the community as a convener, bringing people together from all sectors around issues and opportunities. As a knowledge source and thought leader, the Foundation promotes collaboration and embraces innovation through various deliveries to foster awareness, inform decision-making, and spark collective action on problems facing the people of Spartanburg.
The Foundation partnered with the Council on Foundations to host this first-ever convening to discuss and examine philanthropy’s role in creating a healthy, inclusive economy. Nearly 130 regional and national philanthropic leaders converged over two days of learning and networking. Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer acted as keynote speaker, providing strategies to increase economic mobility.
Breakfast Business and Professional Women and the Foundation offered a special community convening featuring Katherine Goble Moore and Joylette Goble Hylick, daughters of famed NASA scientist, Katherine Johnson. Over 200 guests heard an inspiring message from the daughters and local women, like Susan Lea and Tammie Hoy Hawkins, who spoke about the importance of education for all and perseverance.
As a gift to the community and in recognition of its 75th Anniversary, The Spartanburg County Foundation held a free, family-friendly event Monday, October 22, 2018. The event, featured Susan L. Taylor, former editor-in-chief of Essence Magazine, and Peabody Award Winner Joy Thomas Moore. The event inspired over 550 guests by explaining how you can be a voice in a child’s ear, even when you are not with them.
Beyond grantmaking, the Foundation serves as a catalyst to bring the community together to collaborate, form partnerships, address issues, foster giving, and involve people for the purpose of creating long-lasting, positive change. As a result of this work, several of our leadership initiatives have gained both regional and national attention around the areas of innovation and impact.
The Mary L. Thomas Award for Civic Leadership and Community Change, named after the Foundation’s Chief Operating Officer Mary Thomas, was created to recognize the contributions of individuals who have demonstrated outstanding commitment to improving the quality of life in Spartanburg.
Established in 2004, The Grassroots Leadership Development Institute (GLDI) is a seven-month leadership development program designed to equip participants with the knowledge, skill-set, and resources to be effective in leading positive change throughout the greater Spartanburg County community and beyond.
Citizen Scholars Institute provides youth with life skills, knowledge, and character development through mentoring and program support in order to obtain college scholarships, complete college, and become contributing citizens. Graduates are then invited to become part of the alumni association and/or become mentors.
Women Giving for Spartanburg is a group of passionate women who have joined together to enhance the quality of life in Spartanburg through collective giving. For over 10 years, Women Giving has granted more than $2.3 million to nonprofits supporting Spartanburg residents.
The Spartanburg County Foundation is dedicated to strengthening the nonprofit organizations that work to transform Spartanburg County. The Foundation provides programs and resources that can build a nonprofit organization’s effectiveness, so they can benefit the community’s needs.
Spartanburg, along with six other southern cities, are participating in the second cohort of MDC’s Network for Southern Economic Mobility’s (NSEM). The Foundation has assembled a team of public, private, and nonprofit partners who will assess and gain tools for improving the economic mobility of Spartanburg youth and young adults in the lowest income brackets.
Nonprofit Connect provides nonprofit organizations an opportunity to receive valuable training, discuss local and national trends, share organizational updates, and network. Participants receive techniques and information that will further assist them in fulfilling their mission and identify possible collaborations.
The Spartanburg County Foundation embraces and values the importance of building strong partnerships to effectively lead in addressing Spartanburg County’s critical indicators. We work closely across sectors with residents, nonprofits, community leaders, businesses, philanthropic leaders, and local governments, each bringing their own unique strengths to the table, which results in scaled initiatives with amplified progress and an increased impact.
The Spartanburg County Criminal Justice Youth Institute introduces 11th and 12th graders to the criminal justice system to help them gain a deeper understanding of its inner-workings, eliminate misconceptions, and build long-lasting relationships with criminal justice officials.
The Spartanburg Interfaith Alliance, a partnership between area clergy and The Spartanburg County Foundation, is a county-wide network of clergy, lay leaders, and faith communities that have joined together for the purpose of contributing to the common good.
Spartanburg Community Indicators Project presents data and engages the community in dialogue and strategy leading to positive change in Spartanburg County. The project facilitates organizations and individuals as they actively promote civic prosperity by using community indicator data to inform and guide their progress.
To review the Spartanburg Racial Equity Index, released August 16, 2018, CLICK HERE.
The Spartanburg Academic Movement (SAM) is an all-in partnership of schools and colleges, businesses, governments, foundations, faith communities, and individuals across Spartanburg County in pursuit of high levels of educational achievement. SAM promotes the importance of academics from cradle-to-career.