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My LA2050 $1 Million Grants Challenge Winners Announced

Today, the Goldhirsh Foundation announces the winners for its annual My LA2050 Grants Challenge, a $1 million online crowdsourced competition for creative ideas that shape the future of LA. The 10 winning organizations each receive a $100,000 award from the Goldhirsh Foundation to implement their proposals to make LA the best place to learn, create, play, connect, and live.

With more than 90,000 votes determining the top 50 finalists to activate organizations into collaborating and sharing their ideas to advocate for their proposals, the Goldhirsh Foundation’s annual online grants challenge invited Angelenos to submit proposals in five goals categories to shape a better LA by 2050. The winners built strong applications by combining compelling stories, metrics, and outcomes to translate inspiration to impact to tackle the most pressing challenges facing the region.

Winning solutions include inclusive entrepreneurship for re-entry populations; food security and access for low-income and homeless students; programs that activate “citizen scientists” to get outside and contribute to building local biodiversity data; generation-to-generation programs to connect Angelenos at all ages and stages; and civic engagement tools and curriculum ahead of 2020.

“The future of LA, translating into more vibrant, equitable, and connected communities, is one we envision for every Angeleno. Our region’s biggest challenges get a little smaller when we break them down to the project and neighborhood level,” says Goldhirsh Foundation president Tara Roth.

The winners, two in each of the five goal categories are:

LEARN: Rise, Inc., 9 Dots

Rise, Inc., a student-led advocacy organization, will engage college students and community-based service providers to raise awareness and utilization of the housing and food programs available to for the 20 percent of community college students who experience homelessness.

9 Dots, a computer science training program, will provide computer science education for 6,500 elementary school students and more than 200 teachers at 25 schools in LAUSD and Compton Unified School District.

CREATE: Defy Ventures Inc., Venice Community Housing

Defy Ventures Inc., a business training program for currently and formerly incarcerated individuals, will enroll a class of 60 “Entrepreneurs in Training” in its seven-month program at California State Prison.

Venice Community Housing, a housing and homeless service provider in Venice, Mar Vista, and Marina Del Rey, will work with formerly homeless artists to develop mural paintings and art installations for several of its properties.

CONNECT: CASA of Los Angeles, Rock the Vote

CASA of Los Angeles, will mobilize 400 community volunteers to serve as special advocates for “crossover youth,” those with open cases in both the foster care system and juvenile delinquency court.

Rock the Vote, will build a new generation of civic leaders from within LAUSD via an interactive “Democracy Class” about pre-registering, voting, participating in the census, and getting involved in or running for a seat on a Los Angeles Neighborhood Council.

LIVE: The Youth Movement Against Alzheimer’s, LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes

The Youth Movement Against Alzheimer’s, will train college students to serve as caregivers to high-need patients in the LA Metro area and South LA who cannot currently afford respite care service.

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, will deploy a mobile nutritional and cultural education program to engage students in explorations of Mesoamerica and encourage them to connect to their cultural heritage through hands-on garden, culinary, art, and history activities.

PLAY: The Natural History Museum, Harlem Lacrosse

The Natural History Museum will encourage Angelenos to explore nature while contributing to open-sourced scientific research using the iNaturalist app to submit nature observations and provide scientists with wildlife data points.

Harlem Lacrosse, a sports-based youth development organization, will bring its program of sports and mentorship to 200 students with the intent of putting them on a path to success as students, athletes, and citizens.

About LA2050
An initiative of the Goldhirsh Foundation, LA2050 is a community-guided initiative driving and tracking progress toward a shared vision for the future of Los Angeles. LA2050 was designed to inspire an outbreak of civic activism and to develop a roadmap to accelerate impact for our region. Through the MyLA2050 Grants Challenge and beyond, LA2050 deploys financial, human, and social capital with the help of hundreds of thousands of Angelenos to make LA the best place to LIVE, LEARN, PLAY, CONNECT, and CREATE.


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