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Innovation School Fellowship Opportunity for Educational Entrepreneurs

  For almost a decade, The Mind Trust has been funding and supporting innovative initiatives to change the face of education in Indianapolis, and their impact has been hard to ignore. Transform Consulting Group highlighted The Mind Trust’s “ripple effect” work last fall in a blog post. In 2008, The Mind Trust began a search for educational entrepreneurs to serve as fellows as they create and birth significant reform movements. The newest program, another fellowship,  is the Innovation School Fellowship. This ground-breaking opportunity will give education leaders the opportunity to partner with the Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) to start new schools, called Innovation Network Schools. The selected Innovation School Fellows will be able to utilize IPS buildings and resources through

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i3 Validation and Scale-Up Federal Grants

  The U.S. Department of Education’s Investing in Innovation (i3) program was developed in order to support educational initiatives that proved to be effective in improving student achievement. The i3 program targets initiatives that improve student growth, close achievement gaps, decrease dropout rates, increase graduation rates, or increase college acceptance and attendance rates. Transform Consulting Group highlighted the i3 grant opportunity last year. The overall grant focus and structure has not changed, and the timeline remains somewhat the same. The i3 program comes in three different grant opportunities. The first, Developmental grants, finished their pre-application process on March 14th. However, two more grant opportunities remain: Validation grants and Scale-up grants. Both of these grants fund the development of already existing projects

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Federal Grants for Mentoring Programs

  In response to the President’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is accepting applications for the Fiscal Year 2014 National Mentoring Programs and the Multi-State Mentoring Initiative. The National Mentoring Program is geared towards organizations with a national scope that engage in mentoring initiatives for at-risk, high-risk, and/or undeserved youth 17 years of age or younger.  The Multi-State Mentoring Initiative will support organizations as they both improve the access to and impact of mentoring services they provide and/or expand their existing mentoring activities for at-risk and underserved youth populations. OJJDP has a list of resources for mentoring programs to check out.  The deadline for both applications is May 27, 2014. Announcement of awardees

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New Team Member, Stephanie Brooks

  Transform Consulting Group is thrilled to welcome Stephanie Brooks as our newest team member!  As Project Coordinator, Stephanie will support client projects and assist with marketing and communication needs. Stephanie studied Graphic Design at Indiana State University (ISU).  While at ISU, Stephanie received a grant for creative research that included her work being shown and sold in several gallery shows. She has experience with photography as well as designing print materials. Stephanie also worked as a Youth Director for a church for five years. She taught lessons, planned and coordinated events and facilitated relationships between the youth and the larger church body. Stephanie lives in Noblesville with her husband, Chris. They are expecting their first child at the beginning of June. You can contact Stephanie at s.brooks@transformconsultinggroup.com.

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3 Steps to Prepare for a Successful Federal Grant Season

  Spring tends to be a busy time to apply for federal grant opportunities. There are several reasons why this time of year is so busy, but the main reason is based around the start of the federal fiscal year. The majority of available and new competitive grants are from discretionary federal funds that are annually approved and appropriated. The federal fiscal year begins October 1st (of course, assuming that Congress passes appropriations and there is not a government shutdown!). As a result, the federal government is working against a fall start date to issue the federal awards. The timeline typically looks something like this: Spring (March – May): Federal agencies release requests for funds (RFP) and/or notice of funding

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Early Education Matching Grant Program Grantees Announced

  The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) named 30 organizations from 15 different Indiana counties as recipients of the Early Childhood Education Matching Grant, which will help provide quality early education for low-income children in Indiana. As we discussed in a previous blog article, the Early Education Matching Grant (EEMG) Program was created by the Indiana General Assembly during the last legislative session IC12-17.2-3.7.  This competitive grant will increase the enrollment of eligible low-income four year olds in high quality PreK programs. The grant program allows high-quality, early care and education programs to apply for matching funds to serve 4-year-old children from families whose incomes are below federal poverty guidelines.  It is separate and distinct from the pre-K

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Small Business Facade Grants Available

Indianapolis’ Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) will be accepting applications for the Small Business Façade Improvement Program. The program is a product of the Fostering Commercial Urban Strategies program and awards grant money to retail and commercial property for the purpose of renovating street-front exteriors of space and building. Since 1992, LISC Indianapolis has been empowering residents to develop their communities into safe, attractive, and healthy neighborhoods. LISC’s mission reaches into a variety of initiatives, including initiatives in education, economic development, family, and health.  Through the Small Business Façade Improvement Program, LISC Indianapolis hopes to empower small businesses of Marion County to succeed economically and lead their neighborhoods towards community improvement. Eligible projects include renovations of building surface materials, signage,

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Professional Development Opportunity: Youth Justice Leadership Institute

  The National Juvenile Justice Network’s Youth Justice Leadership Institute is seeking professionals to participate in their dynamic year-long fellowship program.  Each year, the NJJN chooses a class of ten fellows to learn about leadership within the juvenile justice system.  They have a particular focus on cultivating and supporting leaders of color, youth and family members who have a commitment to juvenile justice system reform and the skills to be emerging leaders in the field. This year-long fellowship pairs participants with mentors in the field and will participate in a combination of in-person and distance learning activities. Fellow’s main focus of study and development will be in three areas: leadership fundamentals, the juvenile justice system, and advocacy skill development. Rukia Lumumba,

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3 Ways for Nonprofits to Refresh Their Annual Report

  Annual reports are a good thing and an opportunity for organizations to communicate important information to stakeholders.  The challenge is making annual reports compelling enough for your donors and stakeholders to read, so that they see the value of their investment in your organization! At Transform Consulting Group, we have helped several organizations with their annual report and are in the process of working on one right now.  Over the years, we have seen some pretty exciting changes and trends in how nonprofits are choosing to highlight their annual success and communicate their story to stakeholders.  Here are three ways to refresh your annual report: 1. Be Brief The label “annual report” is misleading as this does not need

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STEM Summer Camp Opportunity at CDC

  In the United States, there is an increasing demand for skilled workers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).  However, we have an insufficient supply of skilled workers and students pursuing degrees in this field.  According to the U.S. Department of Labor, only 5% of U.S. workers are employed in fields related to science and engineering, yet they are responsible for more than 50% of our sustained economic expansion. “To succeed in this new information-based and highly technological society, students need to develop their capabilities in STEM to levels much beyond what was considered acceptable in the past.” (National Science Foundation) A significant gap remains for young people to pursue STEM careers.  As a result, significant funding is being

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