"From sheep guts to grants"
The Oppenheimer Family Foundation was created in 1933 with stock from our family business, the Oppenheimer Casing Company, which made sausage casings (skins for hot dogs). The Foundation turned sheep guts into grants for Chicago Public School teachers.
As a former CPS teacher, Ted Oppenheimer often saw teachers reach into their own pockets to make teacher-generated projects possible. So in 1976 my former wife, Irma Oppenheimer, and I decided that the focus of the Foundation should be to help underwrite these projects in support of the creative and hardworking CPS teachers and their students. My fellow Foundation directors and brothers, Harry and Jim, agreed. For forty years the Oppenheimer Family Foundation Teacher Incentive Grant (offtig) has granted over $3.8 million dollars to more than 7,417 teachers, impacting almost 300,000 students. You can see the range of projects by visiting the offtig section of this website.
A NEW VENTURE
As we close OFFTIG in 2016, we move to a new concept we are calling EduOpps which stands for Education Opportunities. EduOpps will support a limited number of 501 C-3 non-profits who offer experiential learning to Chicago Public School students.
Opportunities to apply for grants will be by invitation only. We seek to support a range of activities that currently are not offered in CPS programs.