|Photo courtesy of Hancock Shaker Village, Pittsfield, MA
PITTSFIELD, Mass., USA /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Hancock Shaker Village
President and CEO Ellen Spear
announced today that the living history museum has received a $1 million grant from the Kresge Foundation. The grant was awarded as part of the foundation’s Sector Leaders investments, an invitation-only component of the Kresge Arts and Culture Program’s Institutional Capitalization initiative. It recognizes Hancock Shaker Village’s work as a visionary organization pursuing transformational projects designed to shift its business model and to serve as a field-wide example of leadership.
“Appropriate levels of capitalization that allow an organization to grow or reinvent itself is standard in the for-profit sector, but has not routinely been considered best practice in the nonprofit sector,” said Alice Carle, program director of the foundation’s arts and culture program. “Kresge wishes to reverse this trend by supporting cultural organizations that have completed the thoughtful, exploratory process to reinvent their business models. Hancock Shaker Village is a shining example of such an institution and we are proud to help it move boldly into a sustainable future.”
Over the past two years, Hancock Shaker Village has begun implementing a comprehensive business plan that calls for the development of new and diverse sources of revenue. “We are taking steps to move away from the outmoded museum business model of dependence upon admission and gift shop revenue,” said Spear. “Instead, we are using our resources to address community needs while generating revenue from new, sustainable sources, such as with a new architecture curriculum for K-5 that is under development, and the new Master’s Degree program in Historic Preservation in partnership with the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.”
The Village will invest in its website to expand its service to the public and its revenue potential and it is considering several business initiatives, including expansion of its licensing capabilities and food and agriculture-related enterprises. As new ventures take hold, Hancock Shaker Village will seek other investors to help move initiatives to the next level.
About Kresge Foundation
The Kresge Foundation is a $3.1 billion private, national foundation based in Troy, Michigan.
About Hancock Shaker Village
Hancock Shaker Village is an outdoor living history museum and center for reflection on living a principled life in the 21st century located in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.