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Weekly update from PND

December 31, 2021

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A weekly update with the latest news from PND

Austin Russell creates $70 million fund at Central Florida Foundation
December 30, 2021
The Central Florida Foundation in Orlando has announced a $70 million contribution from Luminar Technologies founder and CEO Austin Russell to create a charitable fund.

A former recipient of a $100,000 Thiel Fellowship, Russell channeled his passion for physics into the development of LiDAR technology and software, then took his company public in December 2020, becoming the world’s youngest self-made billionaire at age 25. The fund at CFF will focus on supporting high-impact efforts for local- and system-level improvements in Florida, as well as on making bolder bets on a broader scale on underinvested opportunities.
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More than $6.7 million awarded to Chicago neighborhood anchor projects
December 30, 2021
The Chicago Community Trust has announced that its We Rise Together: For an Equitable and Just Recovery initiative has awarded grants totaling more than $6.7 million in support of neighborhood anchor projects.

Supported by a coalition of individual, foundation, and corporate funders, We Rise Together aims to increase impact and leverage private capital, public-sector funds, and business resources to drive an equitable economic recovery by attracting additional investments and partners in Black and Latinx communities.
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Jewish Queer Youth receives $1 million gift to expand social services
December 30, 2021
JQY (Jewish Queer Youth), a nonprofit that supports and empowers LGBTQ youth from Orthodox, Chassidic, and Sephardic/Mizrahi homes, has announced a $1 million gift from Paul Austin and his partner, Dalip Girdhar, to expand social services to LGBTQ youth in major Jewish communities across the country.

The largest gift in JQY history will support the expansion of the organization’s Drop-in Center initiative, an in-person clinical program that operates in New York, to local Orthodox communities in New Jersey, Baltimore, Chicago, and South Florida; as well as the increase of staffing in the organization’s crisis phone line.
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Templeton Foundation launches youth prize in honor of Jane Goodall
December 29, 2021
The John Templeton Foundation has announced the launch of a new prize in honor of 2021 Templeton Prize laureate Jane Goodall, the first ethologist to receive the prize since its inception in 1972.

The Templeton Roots & Shoots Prizes will recognize and support individuals around the world whose achievements bring together science, hope, and action to create transformational change in their communities and themselves. The foundation is partnering with the Jane Goodall Institute—whose Roots & Shoots program encourages youth in fifty countries to make a difference in the world—to elevate projects led by participants.
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Tags: STEM; Equity