St. Paul: addressing key factors of community attachment

I spotted a wonderful convergence of two things which Knight is passionate about, namely community foundations and its Soul of the Community research.  The current issue of the Giving Forum features community foundations and uses Knight’s Soul of the Community research to set up how important it is that community foundations focus on the quality of life in a particular geography. The research showed a significant, positive connection between residents’ emotional bond to a place and local economic growth.   

Giving Forum is the online and print publication of the Minnesota Council on Foundations that covers Minnesota philanthropy news by and for grantmakers, givers and nonprofits.  The article includes work of the Saint Paul Foundation and Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation, both of which have rallied around the importance of addressing the key drivers of community attachment identified by the Soul of the Community: social offerings, openness, aesthetics and education.

The article also mentions Knight and community foundation support of the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative, and our work with local government, residents and businesses along the new light rail line.  As Ann Mulholland (VP of The Saint Paul Foundation and Funders Collaborative co-chair with me) says, “You have to make a conscious decision to stop, pull groups of people together, work across sectors and put some intensive resources behind the work.”

Check out the full article “Community Philanthropy: Improving Quality of Life.”

By Polly Talen, program director/St. Paul at Knight Foundation