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Joseph's Home

WECO Fund, Inc.

Cleveland Foodband, Inc.

Eliza Bryant Village

Cleveland Housing Network, Inc.

The Free Clinic of Greater Cleveland

University Settlement, Inc.

Click thumbnails above to read our stories of resiliency, reinvention and results from Saint Luke's Foundation grantees.
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2009 Accomplishments

It would be easy to look back at 2009 and feel grateful just to have made it through such a challenging year. But as so many of our grantees proved, it is entirely possible to do more with less, to work harder and smarter to overcome challenges, and to accomplish great things when times are tough.

With that kind of inspiration and motivation on display throughout the year, the Saint Luke’s Foundation had daily motivation to do everything possible to reinvent ourselves, be innovative, and accomplish some pretty great things of our own.

Highlights of 2009 include:

  • In addition to sharing and celebrating the successes of our grantees, we also made an effort to ask them how we might add value beyond financial support. We conducted a survey of current and past grantees to identify how the economic downturn affected their operations. Survey results led us to:
    • Award more general operating support.
    • Provide technical communications assistance.
    • Support board development and strategic planning.
    • Develop a pilot framework for collaboration among human services agencies in collaboration with 17 local funders.

  • Welcomed Havalee Henry, an outstanding minority medical student, as the first Timothy L. Stephens, Jr., M.D. Fellow at University Hospitals Case Medical Center.
  • Launched our Make It Stick! programming theme with Daniel Heath, co-author of "Made To Stick," presenting at our biennial meeting. Heath led 75 nonprofit partners through an in-depth communications workshop and distributed copies of his primer on telling stories that stick in the minds of your supporters.The impact was both immediate and long term, as the theme continued into our 2010 grantmaking and enhanced our communications technical assistance.


  • Our Board of Trustees developed and adopted a Philosophy of Governance to define what the board does collectively to govern, what members do individually to provide support, and how they weave their diversity to strengthen the fabric of the Foundation to ensure that diverse perspectives inform our commitment to being a dynamic learning organization. The Philosophy also informed the recruitment of 4 new trustees and eased the transition in board leadership from Sandra Kiely Kolb (4 years of outstanding, visionary leadership) to Tom Rathbone, our current chair.
  • Implemented the Foundation Dashboard of key indicators to measure our progress in meeting our goals related to our four key strategies of Grantmaking, Outcomes Measurement, Collaboration and Communication, along with key indicators for Foundation Development, Management, Stewardship and Governance.
  • Worked with the Deaconess Community Foundation, along with the support of 17 local funders, to design and implement the Human Services Strategic Restructuring Pilot Project to provide nonprofits with a framework to move along the collaboration continuum; and help foundations learn how to support their efforts to work more effectively together.
  • Narrowed our grantmaking focus to basic needs and core operating and program support for organizations serving vulnerable populations.
  • Weathered the financial storm with guidance from our new investment relationship with Commonfund Strategic Solutions, and the implementation of very stringent cost saving measures, which resulted in keeping our ratio of program expense to total expense at 88%

We can go on and list many other accomplishments and honors, but what matters the most, what we are here for, are our grantees. We are grateful for the role we are able to play in helping them to provide much needed services to those in need in our community.

So, when one of our grantees said “We are deeply grateful and honored to be a grantee of SLF. The significance of the funding is equaled only by the vibrant, informative, yet candid feedback the foundation provides. We feel challenged by SLF to be our best, and safe enough to share when we are not.” -- that was truly the highlight of our year.

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