Over the past year, it has been especially gratifying to witness and be a part of positive things happening in northeastern Minnesota. All across the region, individuals, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and communities carry on meaningful work despite challenging circumstances. They are resourceful and persistent, and the Northland Foundation is honored to partner with them.
A copy of the Northland Foundation's Form 990 is available upon request. Please contact us for a copy .
Received a $2 million federal grant to the Business Finance Program, one of just 59 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grants made nationwide to Community Development Financial Institutions like Northland, whose mission is to provide financing to stimulate development in economically distressed urban, rural, and Native American communities.
Convened nearly 200 regional nonprofit leaders, both executive staff and board members, in January. Nationally known presenters provided insights into current economic realities, the fund-raising environment, and management strategies and tools to navigate nonprofits through these difficult times. Minnesota Power–an ALLETE Company co-sponsored.
Opened Northland Village – Buhl’s Assisted Living Community in February, the second assisted living facility that Northland has developed to provide high-quality housing options for older adults in small, rural communities. The first Northland Village opened in McGregor in April of 2007.
Received the NCEA 2008 Outstanding Organization Award for the KIDS PLUS Program from the National Community Education Association, which presents this award to an agency, organization, or institution that exemplifies support and service in the development of community education.
Awarded 196 grants totaling nearly $977,897 to nonprofit organizations serving the seven-county Arrowhead Region that address the well-being of children, youth, and families; encourage self-reliance and equality for all people; and assist older adults to remain active, valued, and independent in their communities.
Invested over $3.9 million in 19 different businesses and nonprofit organizations through loans and loan guarantees to promote economic vitality and family-sustaining jobs in the region. The Business Finance Program has made 415 loans totaling nearly $40.5 million since its inception in 1988.
Extended business lending into Superior and Douglas County, Wisconsin, with seed capital provided through a loan from M&I Community Development Corporation. Lending previously had been limited to the seven counties of northeastern Minnesota.
Hosted a Succession Strategies Forum in partnership with the Anderson Center. The two-day retreat was delivered to a select group of owners, board members, managers, and advisors from closely held businesses. Sponsors were the Northland Foundation, APEX, Blandin Foundation, Minnesota Power–an ALLETE Company, and Iron Range Resources.
Launched the AGE to age: bringing generations together initiative in ten communities, with funding support from the Community Experience Partnership, an aging initiative of the Atlantic Philanthropies. To date, 920 older adults, adults, and young people have joined together to create grassroots solutions to address community needs. In addition, two regional AGE to age trainings were held featuring nationally acclaimed presenters James Gambone and Craig Hillier.
Added two new Early Childhood Communities, Cook County and Ely, and delved deeper into work within the existing Communities thanks to a grant from The McKnight Foundation. There are now 12 local coalitions in the region helping children birth to five to thrive and have a healthy life of learning, achieving, and succeeding.
Supported the launch of a Reflective Practice Pilot Project, led by the Duluth-Proctor-Hermantown Thrive Action Team. The goal of the project is to assist eight local early care and education sites in shaping best practices to meet the social and emotional development needs of young children. The Miller-Dwan Foundation, Mardag Foundation, and Sheltering Arms Foundation provided funding to help underwrite this project.
Completed the pilot phase of the Northland FFN Alliance, a joint effort of the Northland Foundation and community partners, through a grant from the Minnesota Department of Human Services. A continuation grant of $139,500 has been awarded to support this initiative for two additional years. The project provides training and networking opportunities to family members, friends, or neighbors caring for young children in Duluth, Proctor, Hermantown, Carlton County, and Lake County.
Welcomed a $25,000 recommitment from St. Mary’s/Duluth Clinic Health System, a longtime valued partner of the Grant Program and KIDS PLUS Program to support children, youth, and older adults.
Delivered four KIDS PLUS Institute events offering education and professional development to 350 educators, youth development specialists, and community members. The trainings featured nationally known presenters and were made possible through corporate and foundation support.
Provided planning grants totaling $11,000 to 19 schools and school districts in the region in support of kindergarten transition programs with a special emphasis on reaching young children who receive child care from family members, friends, or neighbors.
Hosted 22 trainings and conferences related to early childhood, early childhood mental health, and youth development that reached more than 1,100 individuals in the region.
Continued a fruitful 23-year relationship with The McKnight Foundation, completing the third year of McKnight’s most recent five-year, $7.2 million commitment to the Northland Foundation’s work in northeastern Minnesota.
Graduated 63 ninth graders from the KIDS PLUS Youth Leadership Academies in Duluth and Superior. With the help of 10 volunteer adult mentors, and local funding support from 39 area businesses, service organizations, and individuals, these young participants gained lifelong leadership skills.
Encouraged young people’s involvement in philanthropy and civic engagement through the KIDS PLUS Youth in Philanthropy Board. These 17 young people and three adult advisors awarded 34 grants totaling $28,334 to youth-developed projects. Additional support was provided by longtime partner Minnesota Power Foundation.
Partnered with the Valspar Foundation’s Minnesota Beautiful Program to award 583 gallons of paint products to 18 community beautification projects in northeastern Minnesota. The 12 year collaboration with Valspar has now donated more than 6,000 gallons of paint products to over 150 projects in the region.