The Born This Way Foundation’s ‘Kindness in Community Fund’ is providing one million dollars to 22 organizations around the country. Among the recipients are two Philadelphia-based nonprofits, VOICEup Berks and Mighty Writers.
The nonprofits were selected for their focus on youth mental wellness, and for focusing on practices regarding inclusion, access, and equity. Donations are between $25,000 to $50,000 for each nonprofit.
“We are thrilled to announce the 22 organizations whose community-led work we will invest in through our Kindness in Community Fund,” Maya Enista Smith, executive director of Born This Way Foundation said in a release. “The diversity of essential services these organizations provide represents the intersectional approach we must take to address and support mental wellness. Young people have clearly stated their need for proactive mental health support, especially as they face overlapping global crises. These organizations work for and with young people, ensuring their perspectives and needs are placed first.”
VOICEup Berks co-founder and executive director Christi Terefenko says she didn’t even have the words to describe the excitement within the organization when they heard about the $25,000 donation.
“It’s for the upcoming school year for us to work with students on developing projects in issue areas that the students are passionate about,” Terefenko said.
On its Facebook page, Mighty Writers says the donations will go towards its goal of eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness.
The donations are in coordination with stops on Lady Gaga’s Chromatica Ball Summer Stadium Tour, including one at Hersheypark Stadium on August 28th.
Born This Way Foundation team members will be volunteering with the local organizations on that date.