Cooper Foundation Awards Grants at June Meeting

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Lincoln, Neb. — The Cooper Foundation awarded a grant of $15,000 to the TeamMates Mentoring Program to support TeamMates of Lincoln and help build capacity for communications, recruitment, and staff development. TeamMates of Lincoln, the largest chapter, has connected thousands of youth with adult mentors who visit during the school day. They reach 70 Lincoln Public Schools and parochial schools with over 1,200 mentoring matches.  Students who are part of TeamMates show consistently improved outcomes in attendance, academic performance, and behavioral referrals – 91% of TeamMates’ mentees graduate high school, surpassing the graduation rate for Lincoln Public School students and for Nebraska high school students overall. For more information, visit

In addition, the Cooper Foundation’s Board of Trustees awarded grants to a diverse group of community improvement, education, humanities, and human services organizations. In total, $147,000 was awarded; grant recipients are located in Lincoln unless otherwise noted.

Community Improvement

Cause Collective: $7,000
Cause Collective was awarded two grants. One grant for $5,000 toward nonprofit executive leadership succession planning, and a $2,000 grant for new member scholarships.


Inclusive Communities (Omaha, Nebraska): $10,000
Support for one Lincoln high school to participate in an IncluCity Leadership Camp at Carol Joy Holling camp in Ashland, Nebraska. IncluCity is a four-day residential camp for youth that works to reduce acts of school violence and bullying.

Planned Parenthood of the Heartland: $15,000
Toward comprehensive sexual and reproductive health education programs in Lincoln.

Prairie Loft Center for Outdoor and Agricultural Learning (Hastings, Nebraska): $10,000
Support for the experiential education program.

Stand For Schools: $10,000
General operating support for this organization’s work to advance public education in Nebraska.

TeamMates Mentoring Program, Lincoln, Nebraska chapter: $15,000
Toward capacity building for Lincoln chapter recruitment.


Humanities Nebraska: $15,000
To support two core programs: Capitol Forum on America’s Future and Nebraska Warrior Writers.

Human Services

Bridges to Hope: $10,000
For general operating support. Bridges to Hope serves as the first point of contact after incarceration to connect vital services, programs and necessities for men and women reentering society. 

Center for Legal Immigration Assistance: $15,000
For general operating to support affordable legal immigration assistance to low income immigrants and refugees in Lincoln.

Child Advocacy Center: $20,000
Support for the Operations Director staff position.

Community CROPS: $10,000
For general operating to support four primary program areas: community gardens, youth garden education, growing farmers training program, and the mobile veggie van.

Family Violence Council: $10,000
To support the Lincoln Threat Advisory Team and general operating expenses.

The Cooper Foundation, established by Joseph H. Cooper in 1934, has granted over $25 million to benefit the people of Nebraska. The Foundation makes quarterly grants supporting arts, community improvement, education, environment, humanities and human services primarily in Lincoln and Lancaster County. For more information about grant eligibility and the application process visit the foundation’s web site,

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