The Detroit Grants and Loans Database tracks how funding moves through Detroit’s non-profits. It started as a personal project of Matt Hampel: he began tracking when Detroit organizations received grants - a press release here, some word of mouth there. The list grew slowly, and his friend Benjamin Chodoroff started to help with the research.
We are working on this project because we have heard from non-profits that there is a need for this information. Small non-profits are often in the dark about who ended up getting the grant they applied for, and funders don’t have a good picture of the philanthropic ecosystem outside their own organization.
Currently, we have records for a few hundred grants, and we haven’t had time to update them. We want to share this data with the public, but to do this we want to make sure the list is up-to-date and has as many grants in it as possible.
We can do the work of setting up a system to share the information ourselves - both of us are programmers and have lots of experience designing accessible and open websites - but we need a lot of help with data collection.
With the addition of a capable researcher to our team, we can grow this project to the point of having a polished website ready in a few months’ time. The data will be open to the public to view and download, and we will set up a system to ensure it is maintained as time goes on.
We don’t know exactly what this project will end up being, but we are listening to our peers and friends and will be polling everyone to make this dataset as useful as possible. We will keep software, the development process, and of course the data itself, open source and freely licensed.
We need to raise $2,500: a respectful internship stipend is $1,500 a month, and we’d like to bring someone on board for 3 months. We’ve both pledged $1,000 of our own money to make this happen.
Funded by Detroit, MI (May 2013)