Special Initiatives

When we identify critical gaps in service or unmet needs, we launch special initiatives to create innovative solutions that augment our core grant-making portfolio.


Start By Asking

Over 800,000 low-income New Yorkers don’t receive the critical food, health, and income benefits they’re eligible to receive. We’re trying to close the gap.


Fund for Early Learning (FUEL)

In 2016, we launched a $50 million five-year effort – called the Fund for Early Learning (FUEL) – to transform New York City into an “early learning metropolis.” Our vision: to ensure that all parents in low-income communities can provide their young children with the best possible start to their lives.


Early Childhood Research Initiative

Early childhood presents us with a unique problem. Far too many low-income children will enter kindergarten months, if not years, behind financially stable peers. The need for highly effective early childhood programs is critical to help change their trajectories.


Now in its 5th year, this groundbreaking study, conducted in partnership with Columbia University, surveys the same 4,000 households quarter after quarter for several years to provide a dynamic view of disadvantage over time. This allows researchers to better understand how individuals move in and out of poverty and material hardship, how they get help, what programs they use, and other important insights. Robin Hood has released five reports that can help private funders, direct service providers, and government agencies better tailor antipoverty programs. Looking ahead, we are partnering with the New York City Health Department to follow nearly 2,000 young children, from birth to age three, over four years, as part of the Poverty Tracker.


Blue Ridge Labs is a Robin Hood-funded technology incubator that supports entrepreneurs, designers, and developers that build technology products aimed at helping low-income New Yorkers.


College Success Prize

Launched in 2014, the College Success Prize seeks to identify a scalable, technology-based tool that doubles the graduation rate of students attending community college who initially enroll in remediation courses.



There are moments that change our lives, our city, and the world. New York has never been the same since 9/11 or Hurricane Sandy. At times like these, our city is called upon to rise to the occasion. As a New York City institution, we were humbled to help our city – and neighbors – rebuild.


A few underlying principles have guided our investment in programs that serve veterans; lessons that we believe can be replicated in communities across the country to benefit thousands of veterans and their families.


Grant Ready Insights And Training (GRIT)

GRIT aims to help operational nonprofits with promising models communicate their outcomes and costs effectively to funders. The goal of the GRIT program is to help build the capacity of New York City’s nonprofit sector.

iconPage 1Fill 1Fill 1Fill 1 copyatargetFill 1Fill 1Fill 1Page 1

Thank you!

Please check your email to confirm your subscription.