The Emerging Philanthropists Program (EPP) was started in 2014 through collaboration between The Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC) and the Harrisburg Young Professionals (HYP). HYP sifted through a number of applications and chose 12 young professionals from Central PA to be a part of the inaugural class. This program was put together to engage young professionals in the various philanthropic needs in our communities.
The 2014 EPP Class was tasked with identifying a specific need or project within the TFEC footprint that could use some monetary attention awarded through a grant by TFEC. The members of EPP would meet once a month to discuss areas of need with local leaders from all areas of knowledge such as education, health, arts, environment and city living. Over the next several months, EPP classmates discussed which geographic location and area of need should be selected for an eventually $5,000 grant that would be awarded to a nonprofit organization meeting their determined location and area of need.
After much discussion and deliberation, the class decided to concentrate their efforts on nonprofit organizations in Harrisburg City that focused on early childhood education with an emphasis on family support. Once that difficult decision was made, a Request For Proposal (RFP) was drafted and distributed to local nonprofit organizations resulting in nine application submissions. From those nine applications, the class created a list of three nonprofit organizations that best fit the parameters set forth in the original RFP. In November, the class conducted interviews and site visits with the three applicants, and in December, chose to award the $5,000 grant to Samara, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening families in Harrisburg.
After graduating in December 2014, the inaugural EPP class created an EPP Alumni Group and the Emerging Philanthropist Fund, an endowment fund that will benefit nonprofit organizations for many generations to come. In May 2015, EPP alumni and the current class of 14 participants will visit Samara for a 6-month review to see how their $5,000 grant has helped benefit Samara’s Intensive Parenting Program.
Authored By: Steven Martinez and David Wagner, 2014 EPP Graduates