The Tomberg Family Philanthropies is pleased to announce our 2016 grants. In late February, our Advisory Board held its annual funding meeting in Moss Beach, California. The grants recommended by the Advisory Board and listed below were then approved by the Tomberg family.

We are happy to be able to support a number of truly excellent projects and organizations working to improve the world in our four primary funding areas of poverty alleviation, the environment, health and education. We would like to congratulate the following organizations on their successful grant requests. Here are our 2016 grantees.


Bainbridge Youth Services

Bainbridge Youth Services is the only no-cost provider of mental health counseling, education and employment services for youth and their families in Kitsap County, WA. The organization strengthens the safety net for teens who are struggling with depression, anxiety, abuse, eating disorders, or other mental health issues. Each youth’s progress is measured via a formal assessment. Each year, 1,200-1,400 hours of counseling services are provided to youth ages 12-19.

Coastside Land Trust

The Coastside Land Trust is dedicated to the preservation, protection and enhancement of the open space environment, including the natural, scenic, recreational, cultural, historical, and agricultural resources of half moon bay and the San Mateo county coast for present and future generations.

Early Learning Neighborhood Collaborative

Early Learning Neighborhood Collaborative (ELNC) is an initiative vested in changing the current reality of vulnerable children. In order to create this change, ELNC has designed and is currently implementing an intentional preschool service system aimed at providing, expanding and sustaining the capacity of high quality early care and education programs in the vulnerable neighborhoods of Grand Rapids.


Educate! works to transform education in Africa to teach youth to solve poverty for themselves and their communities.

Educate! provides youth with skills training in leadership, entrepreneurship and workforce readiness along with mentorship to start real businesses at school, with the goal to make this practical, skills-based model part of national education systems.

In 2016, Educate! is working in 100 schools in Rwanda and 12% of secondary schools in Uganda (350 schools) reaching over 120,000 students. Educate!’s model was proven to have massive impact in a randomized controlled trial. Educate! Graduates earned DOUBLE the income of a control group and had a 64% increase in business creation.

Educate!’s vision is to reach one million students annually across 10 countries in Africa by 2024.

The 5 Gyres Institute

The 5 Gyres Institute has led the effort to research aquatic plastic pollution and to find solutions for regaining a plastic-free ocean. The campaign to ban microbeads has resulted in legislative success at the state and national level.

Foundation Communities (Evaluation project)

At Foundation Communities, we create housing where individuals and families succeed. By combining affordable housing and social services, we empower low-income residents by teaching them the tools, or providing the support, they need to stabilize and increase their economic standing. Our model is based upon favorable acquisition or construction costs, high rates of reinvestment for operations and maintenance, and on-site programs within our communities.

Grameen Foundation

Grameen Foundation’s mission is to empower the world’s poorest people to lift themselves out of poverty with dignity through access to financial services and to information. With tiny loans, financial services and technology, we help the poor, mostly women, start self-sustaining businesses to escape poverty. Founded in 1997 by a group of friends who were inspired by the work of Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, our global network of microfinance partners reaches 2.7 million families in 22 countries.

Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy

The IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy is globally recognized as the first of its kind. School faculty and staff train and empower students and practitioners to innovate and lead—and to create positive and lasting change in the world.

Marion-Polk Food Share

Marion-Polk Food Share is the regional food bank leading the fight to end hunger in Marion and Polk counties. More than 44,000 people, including 16,000 children, receive emergency food each month through the Food Share partner network.

Mona Foundation

Mona Foundation supports grassroots education around the world which emphasizes service to the community and increased opportunity for women and girls because positive community transformation lies in universal education and gender equity. Since 1999, Mona Foundation has provided $8 million to 34 educational initiatives in 18 countries and extended quality education to 150,000 children annually. A fundamental tenet underlying all they do is that all people have the capacity to lead in the process of their own development. Access to education, especially for girls, has been shown to be critical to build capacity in individuals, institutions and communities.

Survival International

The advocacy project will work to ensure that the area of the Amazon rainforest that is home to the Kawahiva tribe is protected from illegal loggers, encroachment and deforestation. Their theory of change is that “the best way to prevent deforestation of the Amazon rainforest is to ensure indigenous territories are protected.” It will replicate and build on Survival’s successful campaign for the protection of forest belonging to the Awá tribe.

UCSF Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health

The UCSF Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health, now in its 15th year, promotes worldwide reproductive health with a focus on contraceptive development, family planning, abortion, adolescent reproductive health, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV, and maternal health. The Center has more than 100 active research and training projects with an annual budget of about $50 million. The Center’s primary tools are research, training, and policy analysis.


We would also like to thank all of the organizations that participated in this funding round by submitting Letters of Inquiry and / or full grant requests. This year we were able to make grants to approximately 3.2% of the organizations that applied for our assistance. To those organizations that we were unable to help this year, our decision not to offer support should not be considered an opinion on the merits of your project. We wish you success in obtaining funding from other sources, and hope that you will be successful in your endeavors.


Advisory Board members pictured in the above photo from left to right are Dave Lyon, Erin Hedges, Gordon Landis, Charlie Tomberg and Carolyn Woolf.

Photo Copyright © by The Tomberg Family Philanthropies. All Rights Reserved.

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