To improve the educational, financial, physical, and social well-being of citizens with a special emphasis on families and culturally diverse communities.
Community, Family, and Understanding
Grotto supports programs and projects that empower people to chart their own course and that help communities determine their own futures. We believe that self-determination ultimately benefits the health of the broader community.
Healthy families that are able to build and realize their own dreams provide the base from which communities build a promising future. We are supportive of two-generation and three-generation approaches as a means of addressing the needs of both children and the adults in their lives together.
The basis for building a solid network of families and communities that communicate openly and work together for the common good is understanding. We believe it is important to embrace differences and different approaches to dialogue, faith, self-determination, and accountability thereby increasing our mutual understanding and respect for one another.
These values guide our operating strategies and grantmaking decisions.
Shine the light on what is working. Building on a community's assets instead of focusing on what is missing or negative changes the way we talk, think and interact with one another. Great work is being done every day, so we will seek to lift up the gifts, skills and capacities of individuals and organizations working to realize their vision for a better tomorrow.
Community-led solutions. We believe that there is achievement, success and leadership in every community. We believe communities provide the best solutions to their own problems. Our funding role is to provide resources to nonprofit organizations that are working within their communities to find sustainable solutions to their own identified issues.
Practice healthy philanthropy. We want our partnership with nonprofits to emphasize dignity in the populations receiving grants, increase and/or reward a strong work ethic, and encourage independence rather than dependency. We endeavor to remain apolitical. At times, however, we may support advocacy for the purpose of raising public awareness about a specific issue or cause.
Effective Leadership is key. In addition to a true passion for the mission, nonprofit leaders must demonstrate key competencies to successfully navigate current and emerging challenges. These include: strategic thinking, being an effective communicator, actively collaborating with others in the community, possessing a high degree of integrity and transparency, demonstrating strong financial acumen, and understanding and valuing diversity in all its forms.
Return on Investment. When nonprofits measure impact and track outcomes, it helps us understand the value of our support. However, we understand that quantifying social or behavioral change is a complicated and expensive task. We look to our grantees to explore innovative ways to show the value and effect of their organizations with the least amount of strain on their budget and resources. There are a multitude of ways to overcome the challenges of measurement. We will work with organizations to ensure that quantifiable results can be produced in a way that is helpful to the organization.
About the Name
The Grotto Foundation, Inc. was named in accordance with a Hill family tradition, begun by Louis W. Hill, Jr.‘s father — naming foundations after streets in St. Paul’s Summit Avenue area where the family, for several generations, lived. Learn more about the history of the foundation.