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Baltimore Magazine: It Takes a Village

BioPark tenant, Dorian Brown, the owner of Neopol Savory Smokery, collaborated with Philanthropy Tank Baltimore, allowing CHANGEmaker D’mond Davis to use Neopol’s kitchen to prepare Sunday Suppers for Hungry for Change. They’ve since struck up a friendship, and their discussions go deeper than serving dinner, with Brown offering Davis crucial insight into fine-tuning his plan and approach.

Philanthropy Tank pairs bright young minds with mentors and investors

Kids these days carry the weight of the world on their shoulders. Their perspectives are often shaped by challenges that affect them, their families and their communities. More than ever, young people are stepping up to meet the moment, with fresh ideas and big ambitions to change their lives—and change the world. Here in Charm City, a new generation of leaders is already taking the reins, with a boost from Philanthropy Tank Baltimore and a ‘village’ of more established local mentors and investors.

Philanthropy Tank, a nonprofit which was founded in 2015 and brought to Baltimore in 2019, is giving kids the tools and support to take their own steps on the path of progress. Participants from grades 8 through 12 are invited to pitch projects to spread positive change in their communities, with grants of up to $15,000 awarded by local investors. Selected students—which Philanthropy Tank refers to as CHANGEmakers—are paired with local mentors to guide them as they pursue their ambitions and bring their ideas to life.

This year, a cohort of eight CHANGEmakers was selected from 48 applicants. On April 14, the eight finalists will receive funding at a final pitch event at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African-American History & Culture. Each CHANGEmaker is unique. One CHANGEmaker pitch will  bring an artistic eye to blighted neighborhoods with an initiative to paint murals on abandoned buildings. Another will seek funding for a community improvement closet, providing people in under-resourced areas with clothes, toiletries, books and other essentials. Another will pitch plans to create a network of support for young people with incarcerated parents. At the April event, investors will determine how much funding will go to each project.

Read the full story from Baltimore Magazine.