Grants Aim to Advance the Arts, Support Youth Success, Improve Health Outcomes, and Reduce Disparities in Medical Research
Today, the Prebys Foundation announced that it has awarded 147 grants totaling $30,607,625 in its four program areas: Visual and Performing Arts, Youth Success, Healthcare, and Medical Research to organizations throughout San Diego County. Among the 147 grants, approximately half of the organizations received an investment from the foundation for the first time.
“When we announced the foundation’s strategic plan earlier this year, we knew we had a lot of work ahead of us to make good on our ambitious goals,” said Prebys Foundation CEO Grant Oliphant. “We spent this past year crisscrossing the county to build relationships, developing and refining our grantmaking strategies, and creating an interconnected investment portfolio that we believe will contribute to a vibrant and thriving region for all. We urge and invite others to invest in their nearby communities, extending support across all levels – every contribution helps our region thrive.”
Throughout the year, the foundation met with community leaders across the region to engage directly with educators, artists, healthcare practitioners, and families and individuals on how to ensure resources go directly to organizations with deep ties to underserved communities and to those that can scale up existing efforts to reach greater numbers of people.
Breakdown of Funding by Prebys Foundation Program Area
Number of Awards
Total Amount of Awards
Visual and Performing Arts
“We are excited about our new and existing partnerships and, as we look ahead to 2024, we will continue to focus on learning from our grantees and on listening carefully to others – what they envision for our community, what they need, and the vital role that leaders, funders, and residents all play to make our shared goals a reality,” concluded Mr. Oliphant.
The foundation’s grants were awarded from the following program areas:
The Visual and Performing Arts
The foundation committed $10,432,625 to enhancing access to the arts and strengthening arts institutions financially. Emily Young, Vice President for Programs, noted, “The arts provide meaning and connection for communities across the region, and make San Diego the special place it is. These grants aim to foster a vibrant and diverse cultural landscape and ensure everyone has the opportunity to engage with the arts.”
Under the arts portfolio, Prebys funded:
major institutions rooted in the local community that stimulate economic development
community arts organizations elevating the work of artists and
organizations creating dynamic art to bring people together across differences
The foundation made 14 grants through the newly launched Excellence in Scientific Research Leadership Program which provides opportunities to women pursuing a thriving research career in San Diego as a key lever to create a more innovative, equitable, and collaborative medical research ecosystem.
“As a foundation, we remain committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the basic biomedical sciences because those values provide invaluable contributions that benefit the entire research ecosystem,” stated Emily Young, Vice President for Programs. “Our grants aim to support female researchers by giving them the freedom and flexibility to pursue pioneering research approaches and questions in understanding and treatment of human disease, especially those that advance improved outcomes on diseases that disproportionately impact underserved populations.”
Youth Health Career Pathways Investments
The foundation awarded 10 organizations $4,000,000 to ensure youth from underserved communities have access to high-quality healthcare career training programs. Diversifying the healthcare workforce is a strategic step toward addressing health inequities and improving access to high-quality care for underserved populations.
Examples of Youth Healthcare Workforce partners include: East County Economic Development Council Foundation, Neighborhood House Association, and San Diego Housing Commission Building Opportunities.
Youth Behavioral Health Investments
As part of its commitment to promoting better mental health among young people, the foundation awarded 23 organizations $2,725,000 to expand access to programs that have proven to help promote the mental well-being of youth. This portfolio is a combination of clinical and community-based programs with additional grants to be made in early 2024.
Youth Success and Financial Stability
33 organizations received $6,450,000 to support programs integrating arts, sciences, and humanities to build critical learning and life skills. “Through our grantmaking in the community, we are seeking to ensure all San Diego youth, regardless of background and family circumstances, have the opportunity to live a dignified, productive, and creative life,” added Chris Sichel, Vice President for Programs.
Under the Youth Success portfolio, Prebys funded their priority areas: Youth Financial Stability, Youth Workforce, and Creative Youth Development.
Youth Success and Financial Stability partners include: Our Time To Act United, Mid-City CAN, International Community Foundation Center for Olivewood, and San Diego Refugee Communities Coalition.
A complete list of all grants can be found here.
About Prebys Foundation
Prebys Foundation is the largest independent private foundation in San Diego County and works to create an inclusive, equitable, and dynamic future for all San Diegans. In 2023, the foundation made 214 grants totaling more than $57 Million across the arts, health, medical research, and youth success areas. The Foundation advances excellence and shared opportunity through investments in groundbreaking institutions, ideas, and people to ensure more San Diegans are financially secure, healthy, empowered, and connected.