Global Focus

The Foundation’s investment strategy is a work in progress.

We started with a few key areas in mind, primarily focused on one city, Pittsburgh. Over time, we found more organizations and good ideas that helped to shape our grantmaking.

We have learned a great deal from our grant partners and will continue to refine approaches based on their results.

Today, the Foundation concentrates on the following geographic and thematic areas in order to:

Advance a More Livable Pittsburgh

The Benter Foundation was founded in Pittsburgh and continues to focus much of its work on downtown Pittsburgh, the heart of the region, and in the neighborhoods that comprise the city’s urban core. 

We’re striving to help advance a more livable Pittsburgh, a central goal supported by several strategies. These include

  • Support of smart transportation, where multiple modes like expanding bike usage, technology enhanced parking and better pedestrian experiences make mobility easier and safer.
  • The arts and open spaces bring people together. To enhance the arts, Foundation grants fund agencies that range from large-scale cultural gems to small and medium sized innovators. Together they amplify diverse and creative voices in our region. Open spaces that everyone can enjoy like public parks and activated riverfronts promote community health.
  • Global connections that inform people about the world and increase our ability to understand and work with one another inspire grants in global education.

Broaden Access to Pittsburgh’s Progress

As the region continues to change, insuring that more people benefit suggests several strategies that broaden access to Pittsburgh’s progress.

  • Programs that help young people Start Right by encouraging lifelong advantages like children’s savings or post-secondary education offer building blocks to a better future.
  • Careers look different today in Pittsburgh than they did decades ago. The region needs new ways to help people prepare for and connect to work. Completing a post-secondary degree, accessing skills training or career development networks can all boost economic well-being. Take the connection between creativity and work, where a special skill or talent can sometimes turn into long-term employment. Artists, artisans, and others who “make” and sell goods are fueling a sector of creative entrepreneurs that can employ more people and grow the local economy.
  • Engaging citizens in solving local problems supports community care and stewardship. To thrive, the region needs strong community leaders. This is especially true in the nonprofit sector, where many organizations face complex challenges and tighter funding. Insuring that our nonprofit partners have the tools they need to improve their performance and better serve our community remains a key goal of this strategy. Supporting leadership development and fundraising, marketing and community involvement are all building blocks of this work.

Beyond Pittsburgh

A few projects carry our work Beyond Pittsburgh.  This funding recognizes innovators who

  • Create new knowledge to tackle hard problems or
  • Support peace building in key regions of the world

Spotlight - Grantees Work in Progress