Impact In Arkansas
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WRF Grants and
Moving the Needle (MTN) is a multi-year strategic plan that builds on WRF’s more than 35-year history of grantmaking. MTN does not signal a new direction for WRF, but rather a more focused and strategic effort to achieve WRF’s founding mission.
MTN continues WRF’s efforts to form strategic alliances and partnerships with others in the philanthropic, civic, and business sectors to reaffirm our commitment to improve the lives of all Arkansans in three interrelated areas — economic, racial, and social justice; economic development; and education. Our ultimate goal is to move from being among the nation’s bottom five in economic and education indicators to becoming one of the nation’s highest ranking states in measures of family and child well-being.
Moving the Needle is guided by the following principles:
- WRF focuses its efforts on people and communities with the least wealth and opportunity.
- WRF is held accountable to the highest standards of integrity and openness.
- WRF uses its resources to understand the problems contributing to poverty in Arkansas and develop long-term, system-focused solutions to those problems.
These principles require WRF to focus on a few goals and, in collaboration with other public and private donors, devote resources strategically to a mix of research, advocacy, and direct service projects.
To accomplish this, the Foundation has adopted four strategic plan goals:
- Reduce the number of Arkansas families living below 200 percent of the federal poverty line.
- Increase high school, vocational, and college graduation rates in the state.
- Increase educational attainment and economic mobility in select communities in Arkansas.
- Show that strategic support and good grantmaking practices can help select grantees achieve MTN goals within the parameters of their missions.
To accomplish this ambitious agenda with limited resources, the Foundation’s grantmaking must be tightly focused. While we encourage new ideas, unsolicited proposals are considered only if they are clearly aligned with the strategies and goals of MTN.
MTN’s goal is to nurture the political will for Arkansas to reduce poverty through economic growth and educational advancement. It is based on the notion that all Arkansans fare better when no one is left behind and when everyone shares in economic progress, quality education, and general community well-being.