This Good News Story written by Jamey Hitchcock is a Realize Bradenton production funded by the Knight Donor Advised Fund at the Manatee Community Foundation.
Financial support, volunteerism, and board service is important to the health and heart of a community. With the incorporation of all, a sense of pride and identity is instilled in the community and displays a culture of generosity.
Susie Bowie is the executive director at Manatee Community Foundation, which works through philanthropy and services that helps to create a thriving community.
The relationship between the Manatee Community Foundation and Realize Bradenton is the commonality of the idea of bringing people together. Both believe that when people are engaged, they become more active in shaping the future for the betterment of everyone and living in a community that they want.
“When you can engage with people who are different from you, it builds friendships, relationships, and possibilities,” she said. “You are able to discover common ground together. Everybody wants a city that’s thriving, through the success of small businesses, and through the attraction of public art and culture.”
The Knight Foundation, one of the main connectors of the Manatee Community Foundation and Realize Bradenton, has a large donor advised fund with the Manatee Community Foundation. The Knight Foundation helped begin the Manatee Community Foundation 20 years ago and helped provide some of the seed money to start Realize Bradenton. Since then, their partnerships have been valuable in supporting the community into becoming a more giving place.
Bowie is a part of the change of creating a city that young people will want to live in, and with the partnership with Realize Bradenton, both have actively engaged the millennial generation in creating a city that they will love and build for the younger generations to love and to find opportunity.
“Realize Bradenton has done well with engaging the younger voices and help them understand that they absolutely have the power to help make decisions locally, and the power to start a local business knowing the community will wrap around them and support their ambitions,” she said.” “With the work of Realize Bradenton, Manatee Community Foundation has been able to share with their older donors and has inspired them, because they want to make sure the younger generation has the tools that they need, and even more so, they learn from them.”
The younger generation’s aspirations for the city are congruent with what the older generations want as well. This includes movability, walkability, and places to go and enjoy each other’s company. Manatee Community Foundation has learned from Realize Bradenton’s engagement with youth, and has seen the commonality in what everyone wants for the city.
It’s all about caring for the community. Through the support of large donor organizations and volunteerism, everyone has the opportunity to play a part in creating a place where everyone wants to live and find opportunities to thrive.
This post is part of the Top 12 Reasons We Love This City series. Read more here.