McKnight Foundation Awards $26.5 Million in Grants

The Minneapolis-based McKnight Foundation has announced 167 fourth-quarter grants totaling more than $26.5 million.

The grants to organizations in the United States and abroad will support groups working in the areas of the arts, children and families, the environment, research, and international relief and development. The foundation announced forty-two grants totaling more than $6 million through its children and families program, thirty-four grants totaling $2.1 million to arts organizations, twenty-two grants totaling $3.2 million for the environment, thirty-six grants totaling $10.5 million to nonprofit groups in the Twin Cities area, and eight grants totaling $385,300 for research.

In addition, the foundation awarded a total of $2.5 million through its other grantmaking category, including a $1 million grant to the Grand Rapids-based Charles K. Blandin Foundation for its Minnesota Forest Legacy Partnership, which is working to preserve seventy-five thousand woodland acres in northern Minnesota through forest-conservation easements. To date, the partnership has helped preserve more than fifty-two thousand acres of forested land, allowing public access to it for recreation and providing regional economic benefits in the form of jobs and property taxes.

"The Blandin Foundation's ambitious long-term efforts to preserve northern Minnesota's forests fit well with McKnight's own mission to improve the quality of life for present and future generations," said McKnight board chair Erika L. Binger. "This initiative aims to reduce pollution, preserve open space, protect wildlife, and build stronger economies in rural Minnesota — each a key issue in sustaining Minnesota's high-quality natural resources."