Annual Report

2021 Results

The Things that Hold Us Together

Whether you live in Northern or West Michigan, the past two years have undoubtedly led you to rely heavily on the things that connect you to those you love and the places you call home. We at the Frey Foundation are no different. In the past year, we have reflected on things that connect us to one another geographically, culturally, and as human beings. As a result, through our grantmaking activities and community partnerships we are renewing our commitment to connect people and places: to themselves, to each other, to their families, to community, and to the natural world.


$ 0

Total grants awarded in 2021

Stories of Impact

Art as a Connector

Large Scale Public Artworks Reflect the Vibrancy of Grand Rapids’ Neighborhoods

Public art that contains images of people that look like you and that reflects your lived experience creates a sense of pride, respect, and belonging. The Diatribe’s 49507 Project engaged youth from its arts programming in community listening sessions with residents to gather creative input to understand how they imagine themselves and how they want to see their neighborhoods evolve. Michigan-based artists of color synthesized these ideas and designed seven large scale murals that celebrate and reflect Black and Brown lives, culture, and experiences in neighborhoods in Grand Rapids’ 49507 zip code. Murals were installed on prominent buildings and unveiled at well-attended community celebrations. The result is not only beautiful but is powerful.

More Stories About the Previous Years' Grantees.

Average Grant Size: $85,656

Type of Support

by amount granted in dollars

No Data Found

Grant Size

by number of grants awarded

No Data Found

2021 Grants Awarded

By organization

Organization NameProject TitleGrant AmountProgram AreaArea Served
ArtPrize Grand RapidsPost-pandemic relaunch of the ArtPrize event and its potential to stimulate economic activity in downtown Grand Rapids$250,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Arts Working GroupProfessionally-led diversity, equity and inclusion initiative$10,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Boys and Girls Club of Grand Rapids Youth Commonwealth Inc.Expanded programming and provision of in-person academic support for students attending school virtually in 2021$75,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Boys and Girls Club of the Muskegon LakeshoreCapital campaign to renovate a former fitness center to establish the first standalone clubhouse in Muskegon$175,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Challenge Mountain of Walloon Hills, Inc.Improved storm water run-off at the Challenge Mountain Resale Store site$5,000 Children and FamiliesNorthern Michigan
Charlevoix Historical SocietyRenovations to the Harsha House Historical Museum$2,000 Community ArtsNorthern Michigan
Citizens Research Council of Michigan2021 Public Policy Event$1,000 Building CommunityState of Michigan
City of Grand Rapids2021 Grand Rapids Neighborhood Summit$1,500 Building CommunityWest Michigan
City of Grand RapidsGRow1000 youth summer employment program$10,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
City of Grand RapidsEfforts to integrate indigenous history and art with the River for All project$15,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Council of Michigan Foundations, Inc.2021 Annual Conference$10,000 Family & PhilanthropyState of Michigan
Degage MinistriesCapital campaign launched to expand service capacity for women and its social enterprise—Pauls' Mom's Cookies$350,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Disability Advocates of Kent CountyBuilding Opportunities Creating Independence capital campaign to relocate its administrative offices to the new Special Olympics Michigan Unified Sports & Inclusion Center$100,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Dwelling Place of Grand Rapids, Inc.Development of 48 new, affordable rental housing units in Plaza Roosevelt in southwest Grand Rapids$100,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Ecliptic at Rosa Parks Circle ConservancyRestoration of Ecliptic at Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids$100,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Festival of the Arts in Grand RapidsImplementation of its strategic plan to enhance the inclusivity and sustainability of the annual event$20,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
First Steps KentAdvancing Kent County's early childhood system$270,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
For Love of WaterExploring the possibility of creating a new Michigan Water Resources Trust Fund$30,000 EnvironmentState of Michigan
Girls Choral AcademySuccession plan and continued program delivery through executive leadership transition$10,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Art MuseumImagine More campaign to renovate and relocate the museum’s education spaces$375,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Children's Museum2021 State of Play event$5,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Christian Schools FoundationIncrease community-based early care and education capacity and create an outdoor natural playscape accessible to the surrounding community$100,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Community FoundationNonprofit Technical Assistance Fund to collaboratively address capacity building and technical assistance among nonprofits in Kent County$30,000 Family & PhilanthropyWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Media Initiative and Film IncubatorThe production of A City Within a City documentary film$30,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Symphony Society2021 Celebration of Soul event$3,500 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Grand Rapids Whitewater, Inc.Construction phase of the Lower Reach section of the Grand River restoration project through downtown Grand Rapids$1,000,000 EnvironmentWest Michigan
Grand Traverse Regional Land ConservancyPublic access to the 244-acre Mitchell Creek Meadows Nature Preserve$300,000 EnvironmentNorthern Michigan
Grand Valley Metropolitan CouncilLower Grand River Watershed 2021 Annual Spring Forum$500EnvironmentWest Michigan
Grand Valley State UniversityNonprofit/Funder Dialogue Series$5,000 Family & PhilanthropyWest Michigan
Grandville Avenue Arts and Humanities, Inc.Strategic planning initiative$15,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Habitat for Humanity of Kent County, Inc.Effort to increase multi-unit, single family homes in Grand Rapids.$60,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Hand2HandHope in Action capital campaign to acquire permanent space to operate its weekend backpack food program on behalf of children in Kent and Ottawa counties$40,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Harbor Hall FoundationNew women's residential space and clinic as a part of the New Horizons capital campaign$150,000 Family & PhilanthropyNorthern Michigan
Harbor Springs Chamber FoundationHarbor Stars Community Awards Dinner$1,000 Building CommunityNorthern Michigan
Has HeartRepurpose a historic building in downtown Grand Rapids for use as an exhibit hub for art produced by area veterans.$20,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Healing Our Waters Great Lakes Coalition2021 Great Lakes Conference$1,000 EnvironmentState of Michigan
Housing KentLaunch and first three years of the new backbone organization to help advance Kent County's housing efforts$300,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Housing NorthAdvance workforce housing efforts in Northern Michigan$50,000 Building CommunityNorthern Michigan
John Ball ZooFeasibility study for a new West Michigan aquarium sited in Grand Rapids or Muskegon$20,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
KCONNECTImprove outcomes for Kent County children through cradle-to-career collective impact initiative$300,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Little Traverse Conservancy, Inc.Permanent protection of up to 3,000 acres of land in the Maple River watershed in Emmet County$170,000 EnvironmentNorthern Michigan
Mel Trotter MinistriesTemporary emergency shelter at 250 Ionia Ave SW in downtown Grand Rapids$20,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Mel Trotter MinistriesWorkforce development initiative as a part of its Immeasurably More capital campaign$125,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Michigan League for Public Policy2021 Michigan League for Public Policy Forum$1,000 Building CommunityState of Michigan
Michigan League for Public PolicyKids Count in Michigan data capacity-building project$30,000 Children and FamiliesState of Michigan
Muskegon Museum of Art FoundationExpansion of existing facility to increase museum capacity and sustainability$250,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
NIA CentrePartner with the arts community on African American culture, beginning with Opera Grand Rapids on Stinney: An American Execution and related events$7,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Opera Grand RapidsWorld-premiere production of Stinney: An American Execution$15,500 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Rotary Charities of Traverse CityLeadership Learning Lab initiative in Northern Michigan designed to strengthen nonprofit leaders, organizations and the communities they serve$150,000 Family & PhilanthropyNorthern Michigan
SamaritasRenovation of a space in southeast Grand Rapids to serve as the organization’s West Michigan Program Hub and increase its capacity to serve children and families$155,000 Children and FamiliesWest Michigan
Site Lab, Inc.Temporary installation of large-scale art exhibits at The Highlands in northeast Grand Rapids$20,000 Community ArtsWest Michigan
Tip of the Mitt Watershed CouncilEfforts to develop strategies and action plans for incorporating the core values of anti-racism, justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion into the organization's policies, operations, and procedures$7,500 EnvironmentNorthern Michigan
Urban Core CollectiveEfforts to improve the readiness of community-based organizations to compete in the federal grant application process$45,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
Urban League of West Michigan2022 MLK Jr. Corporate Breakfast$1,500 Building CommunityWest Michigan
West Michigan Center for Arts and TechnologyTeen Arts + Tech afterschool program for high school students and STEAM in-school programs for middle school students$100,000 Building CommunityWest Michigan
West Michigan Chapter of Association of Fundraising Professionals2021 National Philanthropy Day event$1,000 Family & PhilanthropyWest Michigan
West Michigan Environmental Action Council Education FoundationRainy Day Project designed to empower neighbors and conserve water$20,000 EnvironmentWest Michigan
West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce FoundationPre-feasibility preparation and capital campaign feasibility study$7,500 Building CommunityWest Michigan