Most grants by the Contributionship have been made in the Greater Philadelphia area because of the 100 year business and personal associations of the McLean family.

The Trustees believe the resources of The Contributionship can be used most effectively by making a relatively limited number of grants for projects of long-term benefit–rather than by underwriting continuing operating expenses. The Trustees focus on capital projects: bricks and mortar, endowment for purposes outlined below. Capital is considered to be a physical item with at least a three to five year life span. The Trustees may make grants in ways to encourage the successful funding of projects.

The Contributionship favors projects in the Greater Philadelphia area when they enhance the lives of those living there. The Trustees consider the Greater Philadelphia area to be Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Philadelphia and Lower Bucks Counties. The Trustees are most likely to respond positively when the project:

  • stimulates a better understanding of the natural environment, and encourages the preservation of its important features;
  • encourages more compassionate and cost-effective care for the ill and aging, in an atmosphere of dignity and self-respect; or
  • promotes education, or medical, scientific, or on occasion, cultural developments enhancing the quality of life.

In addition, the Trustees from time to time support projects which:

  • motivate promising young people to assess and develop their talents despite social and economic obstacles; or
  • build infrastructure to promote enhanced delivery of services and community engagement, partnerships or collaboration;or
  • encourage those in newspaper and related fields to become more effective and responsible in helping people understand better how, events in their communities and around the world affect them.