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“Make the world a better place for this and future generations.” W. Clement Stone

The Foundation is dedicated to bringing about positive change in five major urban areas – Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, New York City, the San Francisco Bay Area — with a commitment to providing the educational and developmental opportunities that support equitable outcomes and enable all children and young people to fulfill their potential.

Stone Leaders for Change

The Foundation awards scholarship grants to youth leadership organizations that are currently part of the Foundation’s youth development portfolio. Executive directors are able to use funds for purposes that they believe will most strengthen their own organizational impact, flowing from their leadership and professional growth.

Grantee Convenings on Equity

Annually, the Foundation staff and grantee leaders from the three portfolios and all funded geographies, in partnership with Dr. Sherri Killins-Stewart, co-design an annual convening focused on racial equity. The convenings allow both the Foundation and grantees to forge a closer partnership to address the challenges of system wide inequities.

Mission-Related Investing

The Foundation goes beyond grantmaking and uses the impact portion of its investment portfolio to help achieve the Foundation’s mission. Together with our advisors, we actively track the rapidly-growing field of impact investing, and continually re-examine our approach to make sure we are making the most of opportunities in a dynamic investment landscape.

New & Noteworthy

New report shines light on Illinois Early Childhood System

March 15, 2023
Early Childhood Educators Set Illinois Kids on the Path to Success, a new report from Council for a Strong America-Illinois focuses on one vital aspect of efforts to improve [the Illinois early childhood] picture. It notes that the most fundamental features of solid early learning programs include “highly-qualified staff who are well-trained both before and during their service and who are adequately supported and compensated.” Yet in Illinois, child care teachers earn an average of only $28,730 per year and preK teachers about $35,840, compared with $65,790 for kindergarten educators. In birth-to-3 programs, the disparities are even more bleak.

Summer Internship Available

March 8, 2023
The Foundation has recently developed an exciting internship opportunity in philanthropy. Working in partnership with other Chicago-based funders, the Foundation developed its internship to provide a unique experience for an undergraduate student interested in pursuing work in the nonprofit space after college.

Illinois public school enrollment continues to drop, preliminary numbers show

January 23, 2023
A first glimpse at public school enrollment in Illinois shows continued declines in the overall student population, but an uptick in the number of students learning English. Preliminary data released last week by the Illinois State Board of Education shows overall enrollment dropped by about 31,000 students — or 1.7% — between last school year and the current one, according to numbers as of Dec. 14. Chicago Public Schools accounts for at least a quarter of the decline. The district lost 9,000 students and its place as the third largest school district in the country.

Center for the Study of Child Care Employment releases new toolkit.

January 25, 2023
Foundation grantee, the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment, recently published the Early Educator Engagement and Empowerment Toolkit which aims to support early educators in their advocacy, power building, and stakeholder engagement. It features the latest facts and policy solutions about the ECE workforce that educators can use to build arguments for change, […]