Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

ABIA awarded $500,000 Federal Community Transformation Grant

Sept. 28, 2011, 6:05 p.m., Posted by Jennifer Thomas


Yesterday, the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron and partners received a $500,000 award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) to fund the Accountable Care Community (ACC) initiative, a collective effort aiming to create a healthier community and lessen the burden of disease in the Akron region. The initiative involves more than 60 local organizations  and Akron’s plan will become national model for improving health. This grant is a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Community Transformation Grants to support public health efforts to reduce chronic diseases, promote healthier lifestyles, reduce health disparities, and control health care spending.

Digital leaders explore frontiers of engagement at Web of Change

Sept. 28, 2011, 12:35 p.m., Posted by Charles Tsai

Every year, more than 100 leaders and thinkers in online engagement gather at a remote retreat center on Cortes Island in British Columbia to share strategies on how to use technology to improve the world. 

Web of Change Photo by Christina M. Samala

Called Web of Change, this years’ event included Knight grantees The UpTakeFree Press and SoChange as well as other activists, community organizers, web developers and non-profit leaders from groups such as Color of Changepresente.org, and New Organizing Institute.

From this group of digital leaders working on advocacy, organizing and movement building, we wanted to know how they try to engage more people in creating change and where they saw the future of engagement headed. This video shares some of their perspectives.

In short, while online petitions, social media and other digital tools figure prominently in the attendees' work, the conversations also explored aspects of engagement that technology can't easily solve.

Successful engagement, even in today's digital landscape, requires deep relationships, good listening, attention to individual needs and a patience for the right type of outcomes.

Why @knightfdn uses social media to become a better grantmaker

Sept. 27, 2011, 4:10 p.m., Posted by Elizabeth R. Miller

Can social media help foundations become better grantmakers? What do tools like Facebook, Twitter and blogs mean for philanthropy?

This morning, Knight Foundation participated via Twitter in a session that brought together a group of foundations to explore these questions. The session, “Good Grantmaking: What’s Social Media Got to Do With It? was hosted by Philanthropy New York.

Two of the key questions discussed: Why would a foundation use social media? And, how is social media helping some foundations do their work better?

Here at Knight Foundation, we use social media as a way of building the best networks of partnerships and grantees that we possibly can. We see it is an integral part of the foundation’s overall communications strategy to engage and inform people about our work. To that end, we use a variety of tactics to communicate with various audiences, including our website, blog and Twitter feed.