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The Boston Arts Environment, A Path Forward

One year ago the Boston Foundation (TBF) published a report on the funding of nonprofit arts and culture institutions in Boston, comparing Boston’s nonprofit arts sector to 10 other peer cities, entitled How Boston and Other American Cities Support and Sustain the Arts.
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A summary of the findings of The Growing Challenge of Family Homelessness Homeless Assistance for Families in Massachusetts: Trends in Use FY2008-FY2016

  Homelessness Report 2017 cover

Today the Boston Foundation released the first report analyzing family homelessness in Massachusetts using the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' internal data.  The report answers many basic questions about family homelessness and shelter usage, such as: how have the demographics of families in shelter stayed over time; what types of assistance do they receive; how long do they stay; which families stay the longest; are there regional differences? 

We encourage you to read the entire report here.  But in the meantime, here are some of the key findings from the report:

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Massachusetts’ Family Homelessness System: the Basics

  Homelessness Report 2017 cover
   
On Thursday, February 23rd the Boston Foundation hosts an Understanding Boston forum for the release of The Growing Challenge of Family Homelessness: Homeless Assistance for Families in Massachusetts: Trends in Use FY2008-2016. This report, prepared by Westat, analyzes Commonwealth of Massachusetts internal data on family homelessness and homeless shelters to understand overall trends and specific pathways through the homeless assistance system. This data-focused report answers many basic questions about family homelessness and shelter usage, such as: how have the demographics of families in shelter changed over time; what types of assistance do they receive; how long do they stay; which families stay the longest; are there regional differences?  The report will be posted here and on the Boston Foundation website after it has been released at the forum. 

If you are not familiar with the intricacies and jargon of the homelessness system, don’t worry! It is complicated, but we’ve provided an overview below to get you up to speed.

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SheGives through the Giving Common

If serious charitable giving were as simple as opening one's wallet or checkbook, philanthropies and experts that facilitate giving wouldn't be necessary. Except, they are...necessary, that is. For those who want to give on a large scale or manage their own nonprofit's output and relationships, experts are necessary to make things happen smoothly. At the Boston Foundation, we have experts galore - strategy leaders, from education reform to housing development. But two in particular, Amanda Holm and Leigh Handschuh, operate Boston Foundation initiative the Giving Common, a detailed, online resource that connects users to in-depth information about nonprofit organizations working to enhance communities across Massachusetts.

One of our nonprofit partners, via the Giving Common, is Kirstan Barnett, founder of SheGives, a philanthropic foundation made up of dynamic, inquisitive and committed donors. SheGives does the analysis  to connect donors to a slate of Boston’s most high impact entrepreneurial nonprofits.

And in today's entry, Holm, the Boston Foundation's Manager of Nonprofit Effectiveness, conducts a Q&A with Barnett.

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Boston Schools Make Strides

Happy Friday, folks! Hope you have pleasant plans for the weekend, but before you check out, as they say, take a minute to read about the Boston Opportunity Agenda's 2017 Report Card, an annual measure of the City’s progress on key education metrics.

In case you're not familiar with it, The Boston Opportunity Agenda is a public/private partnership among the City of Boston, the Boston Public Schools, the city’s leading public charities, including the Boston Foundation, and many local foundations to ensure that all Boston residents have access to the education necessary for upward economic mobility, civic engagement, and lifelong learning for themselves and their families.

This year - the sixth that the Opportunity Agenda has released a report card on student performance in Boston Public/district, public charter, and Catholic schools - we're seeing some positive signs and areas that still need work.
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About the Blog
As Greater Boston’s community foundation, the Boston Foundation is focused on the myriad factors which make our city unique and successful.  Read about what we’re up to in the City of Ideas blog.

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