In 1969, Edna McConnell Clark, the daughter of the founder of Avon products, launched the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation (EMCF) with her husband. It was the goal of the Clark family that the foundations’ giving reflect five core values; humility, belief in people, pragmatism, trust and high standards. EMCF’s focus today is seeking to transform the life trajectories of America’s most vulnerable and economically disadvantaged youth by investing in the growth of programs with empirical evidence they can change the life trajectories of young people in or coming out of foster care, dropping out of school, are disconnected from work and employment, involved in the juvenile or criminal justice system, are at greatest risk for teen pregnancy.
In 2005, Project HOPE received its first grant from EMCF in support of our tsunami relief efforts in Indonesia. EMCF later supported our disaster relief efforts in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake and in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan struck in 2014. Disaster relief grants awarded by EMCF were intended to help Project HOPE provide long-term support and relief to those most vulnerable following any disaster: children.
Most recently however, Project HOPE received a grant of a different nature from the foundation. Motivated by a desire to help HOPE continue its work in the years to come, EMCF gave a $250,000 grant to help HOPE identify and secure a new top-notch CEO and to ensure a smooth transition of leadership. This grant enabled HOPE to take on activities to be ready for our next chapter, such as leadership recruitment, an organizational strategic review, stakeholder meetings and interviews, programmatic site visits, documentation of Project HOPE achievements, new leadership orientation and the expansion of Project HOPE’s resource development.
With support from EMCF, HOPE welcomed Dr. Tom Kenyon as the new President and CEO in September 2015. We are grateful to EMCF for their partnership over the last 10 years and we look forward to continuing to work together to help improve the lives of vulnerable children around the world.
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