Cultural Engagement, Youth Development, and the Arts

The Foundation has had a longstanding interest in the arts, reflecting Benjamin Altman’s personal commitment and our belief in the essential role that cultural engagement and the arts play in enriching the lives of New Yorkers and creating new avenues of exploration and opportunity for the city’s young people. Given our particular focus on issues of access and inclusion, the Foundation invests in organizations, programs, and projects that achieve results aligned with the objectives outlined below. As a general rule, the programs that we support take place outside of the public schools. Please note that the "Results Sought" reflect the specific outcomes of interest to us.

Promote positive youth development among underserved youth through engagement in arts, cultural, and other unique programs that provide sequential opportunities to participate over an extended period of time.

Results Sought:

  1. Significantly increase mastery of program-specific competencies and developmentally appropriate life skills
  2. Prepare participants to transition successfully to post-secondary and/or professional opportunities, including employment in the creative economy

2009 Grants

The 52nd Street Project, Inc.
To help support NEW PLATFORMS, a creative and theatrical arts initiative for underserved children and youth

Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation, Inc.
To help support the High School Fellowship Program and the Ailey Athletic Boys Scholarship Program

Brooklyn Botanic Garden Corporation
To help support the Garden Apprentice Program for middle- and high-school youth

Brooklyn Youth Chorus Academy, Inc.
$80,000 (over two years)
To help provide high caliber vocal musical instruction and professional-level performance opportunities to young people from diverse racial, economic, and cultural backgrounds

Center for Family Life in Sunset Park
To help support the Center’s Life Lines Community Arts Project

Chess-in-the-Schools Inc.
To help support the College Bound Program

The CityKids Foundation, Inc.
To help support the CityKids performing arts program for inner-city youth

Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution
To help support the Design Directions design education and career preparation program for underserved New York City high school students

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art
To help support the Saturday Outreach Programs

Coro New York Leadership Center
To help support Exploring Leadership, a program to promote meaningful civic leadership among inner-city high school youth

Downtown Community Television Center, Inc.
To help support PRO-TV, which provides professional media training to inner-city youth

Education Through Music, Inc.
To help support music education programs in inner-city Catholic schools

Educational Video Center
To help support the YO-TV (Youth Organizers-TV) pre-professional documentary filmmaking program

Figure Skating in Harlem, Inc.
To help support the sports and academic program

Groundswell Community Mural Project, Inc.
To provide support for mural apprenticeship afterschool programs for underserved youth

Hunts Point Alliance for Children
To help enhance The Hunts Point Children’s Shakespeare Ensemble by adding a career and education mentoring program

The InterSchool Orchestras of New York, Inc.
To help support the Music for All programs

Jazz at Lincoln Center, Inc.
To help support the Middle School Jazz Academy for young people from underserved communities

The New 42nd Street Inc.
To help support the Youth Corps Program

Peter Westbrook Foundation, Inc.
To help support the Academic Enrichment Program

Pratt Institute
To help support the Design Initiative for Community Empowerment (DICE) program, which prepares underserved Brooklyn high school students to pursue careers and advanced educational opportunities in design

Publicolor, Inc.
To help support the COLOR Club and NEXT STEPS programs

Queens Council on the Arts, Inc.
To help support the High School to Art School (HS2AS) initiative

Riverdale Neighborhood House, Inc.
To help support the Youth Internship Program and Library Leaders project

Rocking the Boat, Inc.
To help support the Job Skills Program

Row New York, Inc.
To help support the core program of intensive rowing, academic support, and college guidance for young inner-city women

Staten Island Children's Museum
To help support the Museum Internship and Ambassador Program

StreetSquash, Inc.
To help support the College Prep, Literacy, and After School Tutoring Programs

TADA! Theatre and Dance Alliance, Inc.
To help support the Resident Youth Ensemble theater training and youth development program

TADA! Theatre and Dance Alliance, Inc.
As a challenge grant requiring a $50,000 match in new funds to help support the Resident Youth Ensemble theater and youth development program

Third Street Music School Settlement
To help support the Comprehensive Training in Music program

The Young People's Chorus of New York City, Inc.
To help support the after-school choral music education and performance program