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The Business of Giving

Exploring philanthropy, non-profits and socially motivated business, from the Gates Foundation to your donation. A fresh look at the economy of good intentions.

May 6, 2009 at 10:41 AM

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RealNetworks Foundation re-launches grants program

Posted by Kristi Heim

The RealNetworks Foundation is taking applications through June 1 for community grants to non-profits in Seattle and three other cities where its employees are based, restarting a competitive grants program.

The foundation expects to distribute more than $1 million this year, with grants ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 in spring, and as much as $25,000 in the fall, said RealNetworks spokeswoman Oona Rokyta.

The spring grants will give priority to programs that promote economic and job development. The first grant is being made to Solid Ground, a Seattle multi-service agency focused on food, housing and legal, mortgage and tenant counseling. Other cities are San Francisco, New York and the D.C.-metro area.



TOM REESE/SEATTLE TIMES

RealNetworks CEO Rob Glaser is president of the RealNetworks Foundation.

The fall grants will focus on freedom of expression and independent media, and climate and the environment.

According to its last tax filing, the foundation had assets of $21.7 million and paid out just $421,000 in grants in 2007. It's largest grant, for $25,000, went to the Phoenix House Foundation.

I asked Rokyta why the foundation, which was founded in 2001, chose to restart its competitive grants process now.

"The foundation has around $21 million in assets and this is a great time to reinvigorate giving to the community (nationally and internationally) when so many are pulling back on their grants programs," she said.

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