Information about the 2017 Joy W. Pope Memorial Grants can be found here.  Applications will be accepted until October 17, 2016.  Two $100,000 grants will be awarded in the respective areas of arts and human services.

Joy W. Pope Memorial Grant History

In September 2015, the Pope Foundation announced the creation of two new competitive grants, the Joy W. Pope Memorial Grant in the Arts and the Joy W. Pope Memorial Grant in Human Services. Through the grants, the Pope Foundation seeks to foster innovation and model solutions in the areas of the arts and human services.

While the foundation typically focuses giving to arts and human services organizations in the Raleigh region, the Joy W. Pope Memorial grants are open to non-profits anywhere in North Carolina. Joy Pope was the wife of the late entrepreneur and philanthropist John William Pope, the foundation’s namesake.  She was a dedicated patron of arts and human service organizations and served as president of the foundation from 1986-1992.

Presented with nearly 100 applications for the two inaugural grants, the Board of Directors ultimately awarded a $100,000 grant to the Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra and Safelight.  Read their stories below.

2016 Recipients

Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra

The Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra, based in Fayetteville, N.C., will use their $100,000 grant to create an instrument lending library for members of their youth orchestra program.  The symphony’s idea for a lending library grew out of the realization that many students weren’t able to practice their instruments and/or didn’t have access to renting one. “Many of the students are eager to participate [in music education], but can’t afford the opportunity,” said Christine Kastner, president and CEO of the Fayetteville Symphony. “This grant will be transformational for the Fayetteville Symphony Youth Orchestra and for music education in Southeastern North Carolina.”

The symphony will lend instruments to families that cannot afford rental fees and will lend instruments that are not readily available in the area, such as the ‘A clarinet.” In return, students will commit to participation in the youth orchestra, which will offer performance opportunities and coaching by the symphony’s professional musicians. Currently 50 students participate in the youth orchestra, representing Robeson, Hoke, Moore, and Lee Counties in addition to Cumberland County. Read more.

Safelight Family Services: Dandelion Eatery

The Dandelion Eatery, a project of Safelight Family Services (formerly Mainstay Women’s Shelter) received a one-time gift of $100,000 to expand its commercial teaching kitchen.  Opened in 2013, Dandelion Eatery provides jobs training for domestic violence victims while operating as a restaurant open to the public.  Dandelion is located in Hendersonville, N.C. and is open M-F, 10 am – 3 pm.

“Ultimately, we were highly impressed with the innovative nature of the Dandelion Eatery project,” said Foundation Vice President Joyce Pope. “They saw a way to break the cycle of abuse by empowering their clients to be self-sufficient, and that goal has positive lifelong effects for individuals, families, and communities.”

Tanya Blackford, Director of Safelight, thanked the Pope Foundation for this gift. “We are grateful to have the Pope Foundation partner with us to expand the Dandelion program. This generous investment will allow us to offer job training internships to even more clients. Completing this program is essential to a victim’s long-term success in re-entering the workforce and being able to provide for her family.” Read more.


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