[New York, NY]—On behalf of the Poetry Coalition, the Academy of American Poets is pleased to announce that the Ford Foundation will make a $200,000 grant over two years to enable the founding members of the coalition to produce national programs on themes of social importance that feature leading contemporary poets. It will also strengthen a network of poetry organizations by making possible two annual meetings of the founding members during the grant term. 

The Poetry Coalition's founding members are: 

Academy of American Poets, New York, NY
Asian American Writers’ Workshop, New York, NY
Beyond Baroque, Los Angeles, CA
CantoMundo, New York, NY
Cave Canem Foundation, Brooklyn, NY
Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival, Newark, NJ
Kundiman, New York, NY
Lambda Literary, Los Angeles, CA
Letras Latinas at Notre Dame's Institute for Latino Studies, Notre Dame, IN
Mass Poetry, Boston, MA
National Student Poets/Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, New York, NY
O, Miami, Miami, FL
The Poetry Center, San Francisco, CA
The Poetry Foundation, Chicago, IL 
The Poetry Project, New York, NY
The Poetry Society of America, New York, NY
Poets House, New York, NY
Split This Rock, Washington, D.C.
University of Arizona Poetry Center, Tucson, AZ
Urban Word / National Youth Poets Laureate, New York, NY & Los Angeles, CA
Wick Poetry Center at Kent State University, Kent, OH
Woodland Pattern Book Center, Milwaukee, WI

"Having support from the Ford Foundation is an important validation of the vital role poetry plays in our culture and communities. It is through poetry that we learn about one another on a fundamental human level. This support is also a key endorsement of poetry organizations working together in a new, collaborative way," said Jennifer Benka, Executive Director of the Academy of American Poets, the organization coordinating the effort. 

The Poetry Coalition, which formally launched in November 2016 after a year of planning, is an alliance of more than 20 nonprofit poetry organizations in 11 cities working together to raise the profile of poets and poetry in the United States. Its inaugural programming began in March 2017 with Because We Come From Everything: Poetry & Migration, which reached 100,000 individuals with publications, readings, and social media projects.

Poetry Coalition members believe that poetry can uniquely spark dialogue and contribute to encouraging empathy.

For more information about the Poetry Coalition, visit www.poets.org/academy-american-poets/poetry-coalition.