After giving out nearly $165 million, a Minneapolis foundation is almost broke and ready to close — on purpose

[Star Tribune, December 28, 2019] The Robina Foundation is nearly out of money and ready to shut down — as it planned to do all along.

The Minneapolis foundation started with an unusual mission to give away all of its money to four institutions— Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis and its parent nonprofit Allina Health, the University of Minnesota Law School, Yale University in New Haven, Conn., and the Council on Foreign Relations in New York — instead of existing indefinitely like most foundations.

At Allina, most of the $24.5 million from Robina funded a new care model called LifeCourse that sends care guides to help chronically ill patients. It has reduced costs through fewer emergency room visits and hospital stays, said Penny Wheeler, Allina’s CEO.

“It’s probably one of the largest, if not the largest [grant from a foundation],” she said, adding that Allina is increasingly reliant on philanthropy. “We could not have done this without Robina.”

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