In 2015, The Brush Foundation celebrated eighty-seven years of philanthropy in the area of reproductive health and rights. Our foundation is a private foundation created in 1928 by Charles F. Brush, a noted Cleveland inventor and industrialist. Begun with approximately $500,000, and with additional contributions since its inception, the foundation has made grants of over eleven million dollars to date.
The first grant for $5,000 was made in 1929 to establish a birth control clinic in Cleveland. Since then grants for family planning programs in the U.S.A. and around the world have been made biannually. The current interests of the Foundation are in the fields of family planning, contraceptive access, teenage sexuality and pregnancy, abortion rights, and reproductive justice. Since 2008, public policy and advocacy has been a primary focus of the Brush Foundation’s grantmaking.
The Brush Foundation’s mission is to support organizations that:
- Advance the freedom of reproductive choice
- Promote access to and utilization of direct family planning services
- Disseminate science- and evidence-based information on reproductive health and choice
- Support effective, accurate and comprehensive adolescent education on reproductive health and sexuality
- Work toward responsible public policies for reproductive health
Personal involvement and innovation by board members has been one of the continuing strengths of the Brush Foundation. The late Dorothy Brush, the daughter-in-law of the Founder, best exemplified this. She was one the founders of the Cleveland Planned Parenthood clinic. She crusaded with Margaret Sanger and, with Mrs. Sanger and others, brought into being the International Planned Parenthood Federation.
The Brush Foundation has played an active role and anticipates no change in its dedication in helping to ensure that family planning worldwide becomes acceptable, affordable, effective and safe. In 80 years of providing small grants for innovative projects in reproductive health, we are planting the seeds of success for continued advancements in this field. At the Brush Foundation we are aware that more work is needed across the globe to make reproductive health for women available and accessible. We are dedicated to this task for the next 85 years and beyond.
Stacey Easterling, MPH
Brush Foundation President