For much of its history as a grant-making institution, the Hogg Foundation was a "responsive" grantmaker, meaning that it didn't generate its own ideas for programs to fund but instead responded to proposals from the outside. The foundation still had area-specific priorities — e.g. children's mental health, research, community-based care, etc. — but it depended on others to conceptualize how those broad commitments would be actualized in the world.
In most cases, the proposals that ended up being funded were within the traditional service and research mainstream. In some cases, however, more unconventional proposals came in. The images below are from Curtain Calls: Puppetry for Seniors, a report on a grant to a troupe based in Austin to engage older adults by way of puppetry.
The grant was managed by Jim Spearly, a Hogg Foundation fellow interested in gerontology, and overseen by program officer Bert Kruger Smith, who was one of the formative figures in the foundation's history and also one of its most creative prose stylists. In the introduction to the report she writes: "In this society many older people live arid lives, devoid of stimuli and exciting relationships. For too many of them, old skills are forgotten, buried in the dry fields of mundane activities. Memories often are dormant and gray as volcanic ash. Emotions, like fingers, have grown stiff from disuse. And creativity slumbers like a giant beneath a mountain.