Bucks Foundation donates $1M to 15 organizations; “We’re investing in the future of our youth”

MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks Foundation announced on Wednesday, July 19th it will grant $1 million to 15 organizations across the Milwaukee area.

“We’re investing in the future of our youth in the City of Milwaukee,” said Bucks President Peter Feigin. “We’ve worked to develop our community in three keys areas: Youth education, youth health and wellness and community betterment.”

Bucks President Peter Feigin

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele

“When an organization comes to town and they say they’re going to give back, if they don’t, I see it. But when they step up, I see that too,” said Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele. “In over 20 years, I’ve never seen an organization like this so committed, with so much follow-up, so much there-there, not just saying, ‘Hey, we love your community. We’re going to give back.’ It’s grant after grant after grant; I see it all over the county, I see it in the non-profit community.”

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett

“There’s a lot to be said about talking the talk. But when you put a million dollars on the table, you’ve shown me the money. And not only have they shown me the money, they’ve put together what I would consider a premier all-star team,” said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

According to a news release from the Bucks, each organization selected to receive funding from the MBF was chosen after a thorough review process and align with one of the Foundation’s three focus areas: youth education, youth health and wellness, and community betterment. All 15 community partners will use the MBF funds to improve results within their individual programs.

The Milwaukee Bucks Foundation was launched a little more than a year ago.

“When we launched the Milwaukee Bucks Foundation, our goal was to focus on providing support to organizations which align with our three focus areas,” Milwaukee Bucks Foundation Executive Director Alicia Dupies said. “It was also clear that there was a major need for mentoring. Nearly every one of these organizations provide positive mentoring programs in some capacity. We are excited to strengthen our relationship with these community organizations.”

In addition to receiving funds from the MBF, each of the 15 organizations will have their respective logos and mission statements displayed on a reserved piece of fencing surrounding the Milwaukee Tool Construction site in downtown Milwaukee on Juneau Avenue, McKinley Avenue and Old World Third Street. The signs will remain in place for the duration of construction on the new arena.

“The Milwaukee Bucks Foundation has quickly taken to heart and to action the needs of our community,” United Community Center Executive Director Ricardo Diaz said. “The energy and focus the entire Bucks organization has infused across Milwaukee over the last 18 months is unprecedented. On behalf of all grantees, we are honored to be a recipient of this first grant stream, and look forward to deepening our partnership with the team.”

Below is a full list of grant recipients and their specific plans for the funds:

  • Schools That Can Milwaukee
    • Support new and existing programming for educators and students at Milwaukee Public Schools
  • Running Rebels Community Organization
    • Provide support for critical mentoring, educational enrichment and athletics programs for at-risk youth, especially African-American teen boys living in Milwaukee’s central city
  • Safe & Sound
    • Support Safe & Sound’s programs to unite residents, youth, law enforcement and community resources to build safe and empowered neighborhoods
  • Journey House
    • Support Journey House’s College Careers Program
  • Playworks
    • Engage 352 fourth and fifth grade students in Junior Coach Leadership Program at 22 school throughout Milwaukee and Waukesha
    • Support girls basketball program and expand funding to support a mutually-agreeable MPS school
  • United Community Center
    • Capital spend for the new court at the United Community Center’s gymnasium and after-school athletic programming for UCC and Bruce Guadalupe School youth
  • Silver Spring Neighborhood Center
    • Provide staff funding that will help to build a safer, stronger, neighborhood and community
  • COA Youth & Family Centers
    • Provide resources that are directly involved in COA’s Youth Development program, including pre-teen and teen group leaders and coordinators so that an increased number of youth can be served with high-quality programming
  • City Year Milwaukee
    • Support Whole School Whole Child program
  • Operation DREAM
    • Provide funding for two vans that will allow Operation DREAM to reach more boys and reduce the barriers they face in accessing the programming that can dramatically improve their lives
  • PEARLS for Teen Girls
    • Assist in continuing the organization’s plan to reach more young women in the community and accelerate the ability to improve their quality of life in Milwaukee
  • Dominican Center
    • Develop more leadership training, skill development and service opportunities for Amani youth
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Milwaukee
    • Support the organization’s mentoring program that helps address the needs of youth facing adversity, by creating and supporting strong one-to-one relationships with caring volunteer adult mentors
  • Teach for America
    • Allows Teach for America to continue its growing impact in Milwaukee through the organization’s annual Youth Leadership Summit
  • St. Augustine Prep
    • Provide funding to allow students and neighborhood children to participate in swim safety and swim lessons