As Mr. Kellogg’s home state and the birthplace of the foundation, Michigan began as our sole geographic focus. It remains one of our priority places, based on our long history and deep relationships, and on the high levels of poverty and significant barriers to success for its most vulnerable children.
Why This Work Matters
The foundation’s earliest work in Michigan addressed the relative lack of access to educational and health facilities among its largely rural population. That work was concentrated in seven counties in south central Michigan. Just three years later in 1933, the foundation also began investing in Detroit.
While some specifics have changed – for example, our work in Michigan focuses in the state’s population centers of Battle Creek and Grand Rapids in addition to Detroit – barriers to success among the state’s most vulnerable children and their families remain high. The need for equitable access to quality early child care, education and health care; to healthy, fresh foods; and to pathways to economic security remains great.
What We Support
In addition to our work in Battle Creek, Detroit and Grand Rapids, we support a statewide network of organizations committed to social and policy change in the state, and we periodically invest in innovative programs that we expect to provide relevant learning and models.
We support all aspects of a child’s development, and particularly his or her development from birth to age 8, when the cognitive, emotional, social and cultural foundations for later success are first established. We invest in programs and efforts to support prenatal health and breastfeeding; to ensure access to affordable, fresh, healthy and sustainably produced food; to support early school success; and to help parents provide economically secure environments for their children.
We work collectively with neighborhood-based grantees, city and statewide organizations and local funders to help communities achieve racial equity by discovering and implementing their own solutions.