The Pittsburgh Foundation

Co-Creation Grants

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Donor Joe Ballay wanted to generate new ideas for improving public schools. Working closely with The Pittsburgh Foundation’s Program and Donor Services staff, Ballay found that the co-creation grant provided a perfect opportunity to form the “Be A Change Agent” Awards.

Donors work with Program Staff to "co-create" new initiatives and programs.

Co-creation grants are developed through a structured and engaging process through the Center for Philanthropy (CFP). Using the principles of human-centered design, donors collaborate to build on each other's knowledge, ideas and expertise. Working in small groups, donors driven by a specific interest or concern incubate new and creative solutions to pressing community issues. Co-creation grants have ranged from public school improvements, to the environment, to the care and preservation of wildlife.

Participants in co-creation grants work closely with The Pittsburgh Foundation’s program staff to review and discuss research, conduct site visits, solicit proposals and award grants to deserving organizations. In select cases, when the resulting initiatives are aligned with The Pittsburgh Foundation's giving priorities, the Foundation contributes additional funding to increase the impact of the co-creation initiative.

Video Case Study

Watch this video to learn more about donor Joe Ballay's co-creation grant that lead to the “Be A Change Agent” Awards to improve public schools.