Schenectady Foundation announces $2 million in available grant funding

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FILE - Schenectady Foundation executive director Robert Carreau in November.

SCHENECTADY — The Schenectady Foundation will celebrate its 60th year by investing $2 million in projects aimed at strengthening communities throughout Schenectady County. 

The foundation is pledging $1.5 million in grant funding to revitalize local neighborhoods and combat food insecurity and an additional $490,000 to address other emerging needs and provide scholarship opportunities for students.

The Schenectady Foundation was founded in 1963 to benefit residents throughout Schenectady County, and has invested more than $31 million into local communities during that period.

This year, the foundation is pledging $900,000 towards its Equitable Access To Healthy Food program, which aims to combat food insecurity throughout the city of Schenectady — a longstanding problem in the city that has grown worse since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Schenectady Foundation has committed more than $1 million to the program since it was launched two years ago. 

“Our Equitable Access to Healthy Food program is about more than just making smart grants — it’s about collaborating with groups and individuals with a desire to transform our community into a place where nobody ever has to worry about where their next meal is coming from,” Kristi Milligan, director of grants and community programs for the Schenectady Foundation, said in a statement. 

The grants come as the Schenectady Foundation prepares to launch its Healthy and Equitable Food Access Council, which will bring key food partners together to address food insecurity throughout the city. The project will be funded by $600,000 in federal coronavirus-relief funds the city received back in 2021. 

The foundation is also pledging $450,000 in grants to revitalize local neighborhoods, including projects surrounding affordable housing, employment services and support services for parents and youth. 

Earlier this year, the foundation announced it was providing $165,000 to fund eight projects through its Thriving Neighborhoods Challenge, a citizen-led program that provides funding for projects submitted by local residents. 

“We feel the best way to create impactful, lasting change is to listen to residents when they tell us what they need,” Robert Carreau, executive director of The Schenectady Foundation, said in a statement. “What we hear most often is a desire to beautify, uplift and renew the neighborhoods where residents live, work and play.”

The foundation is also hosting a pair of workshops to assist those interested in applying for funding. They include: 

  • March 30 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. at the Mont Pleasant branch of the Schenectady County Public Library, 1036 Crane St., Schenectady.
  • April 1 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Karen B. Johnson Central Library, 99 Clinton St., Schenectady. 

For more information on the Schenectady Foundation, visit the organization’s website:

Contact reporter Chad Arnold at: [email protected] or by calling 518-395-3120.

Categories: News, Schenectady, Schenectady County

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