Front of AAACF's office building

News & Updates

Below, you'll find our recent updates, newsletters, publications and more.

AAACF Fall 2021 E-News

Fall in Washtenaw County means a return to school schedules, familiar routines and favorite activities like football and cider mills—just as autumn represents transitions, with lost leaves, waning daylight hours and falling temperatures. AAACF is experiencing those same dynamics between continuance and crossover: from new Youth Council members to leadership changes.

New 2021-22 Youth Council Members

We are pleased to introduce the new Youth Council members who are joining the committee this academic year! They represent a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives in our community, which are critical to the thoughtful decisions of the Youth Council. These Washtenaw County high school students oversee annual grants of $85,000+ and volunteer in the community.

2021 AAPS Education Fund Grant Program

The Ann Arbor Public Schools (AAPS) Education Fund, held under the auspices of the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, supports classroom projects that enhance and enrich the learning experience and provide the skills and proficiency required for employment and further education for all students attending Ann Arbor Public Schools.

Healthy & Fulfilling Aging Systems Research Report

Growing older impacts all of us, and we can influence that process to be about healthy and fulfilling aging. We commissioned original research to explore this concept, the AAACF Washtenaw County Healthy & Fulfilling Aging Systems Research Report. We contracted with Root Cause, a national research firm specializing in community development and systems change, to learn from older adults and caregivers in Washtenaw County what matters most to those aged 55+ and potential community-driven solutions.

Community Grantmaking Program Now Open!

The Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation recognizes the inequitable hardships that exist in Washtenaw County and that were made more apparent due to the pandemic. The inequities in our communities related to education, criminal justice, housing, health are only some examples of areas that require institutional and systemic change. AAACF’s COVID Relief and Recovery funding will prioritize efforts that advance social justice in our communities.

Year-End Deadlines & Helpful Reminders

Thank you for your generosity and for supporting the work of Washtenaw County nonprofits! We are proud to be your philanthropic partner and we are here to assist you. (734.663.0401 / info@aaacf.org). Before the year ends, make sure you have considered opportunities and plan now for deadlines!

RSVP for 9/27: The Concept of Community

Join your community foundation for Washtenaw County on Monday, September 27 from 4-5:00pm.

AAACF Transition Updates

Last week, we announced that Neel Hajra, who has been part of AAACF for 11 years—6 years as its chief executive officer (CEO), has been named CEO of the Michigan Health Endowment Fund. Neel was actively recruited for this rare opportunity to remain in his hometown of Ann Arbor while leading a large private foundation with a statewide service area.

Join Us: Neel's Farewell & A Community Conversation

AAACF invites you to attend two virtual community gatherings this month: Farewell to Neel Hajra, CEO on 9/10/21 and The Concept of Community: A Washtenaw County Virtual Conversation on 9/27/21.

Aging Justice: Building Community Connection and Spaces

AAACF is pleased to announce that we are now accepting applications! This grant program will support planning grants of community driven solutions that result in the creation of aging-friendly and/or aging-centered community connections and spaces.

Breaking News: AAACF CEO Neel Hajra Named CEO of MI Health Endowment Fund

AAACF’s Neel Hajra, who has been part of the Community Foundation for 11 years—the last 6 years as its chief executive officer (CEO), has just been announced by the Michigan Health Endowment Fund (the Health Fund) as its new CEO. Neel was actively recruited for this rare opportunity to remain in his hometown of Ann Arbor while leading a large private foundation with a statewide service area.

AAACF Summer 2021 E-News

We celebrate the summer season of traditions, celebrations, and transitions in this issue including: Trustee Transitions & Leadership, Audited Financials & Save the Date, CSP Graduates & Neel's Blog on Outcomes, Youth Council Graduates and 2021 Grants, Spring 2021 Grants: YACF, COVID-19, Arts, and Community, Volunteer Recognition: Norman Herbert, Buhr Foundation Celebration Video, and 2021 Young Citizens of the Year

Spring 2021 Grant Awards

This spring, nearly $500,000 in support was awarded through several grant programs: YACF, COVID-19 Relief, Arts & Culture, and Community Grantmaking. Check out recent grants in the online Grant Directory.

Empowering Young Black Men: WMBK & Mentor2Youth Grants

The EmpowerMENt Fund, seeded with $1M by an anonymous donor, supports efforts that uplift young Black males in Washtenaw County while promoting their educational success. The EmpowerMENt Fund recently made grants to Mentor2Youth and Washtenaw My Brother's Keeper (WMBK).

AAACF Spring 2021 E-News

This spring, AAACF is sharing fresh ideas for Washtenaw County and a focus on the future during this season of blooming and renewal. In this issue learn about Forging New Paths: Impact Investing Blog by Jillian Rosen, Empowering Young Black Men: WMBK & Mentor2Youth Grants, The Value of Sharing Knowledge: The Free College Movement, and Buhr Foundation Transition Continues Philanthropy for Community.

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