Tag: Community Foundation for the National Capital Region

Complicated cases for Central American migrants to the U.S.

IMMIGRATION
For the many Central American migrants who have fled their homes to come to the United States, immigration court cases can often come down to a single question (WAMU, 2/25):

When is a migrant a refugee?

[…]

Since about 2009, many more Central American migrants — including many minors — are making the trip north and seeking asylum.

The reasons for the increase are fairly easy to explain. They parallel the ebb and flow of violent crime in the region. As the homicide rate spiked in Mexico, so did asylum applications; as San Pedro Sula became the murder capital of the world, asylum applications from Honduras increased. The U.N.’s refugee agency has interviewed hundreds ofwomen and children who have crossed the U.S. border over the past couple of years, and a vast majority of them said they were fleeing violence from organized crime.

– Consumer Health Foundation board member Silvia Salazar, discusses the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids that began in January, and the opportunity the philanthropic community has to get involved. (CHF, 2/24)

– Amid reports that a number of families in the school system have grown fearful of sending their children to school for risk of deportation, Arlington Public Schools are working to reassure worried parents. (WaPo, 2/25)

RACIAL EQUITY
– Rose Ann Cleveland, executive director of The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation and a member of the WRAG board, candidly shares her experience of witnessing racial inequality growing up in North Carolina, and how she came to realize that society treated certain people differently. (Daily, 2/25)

Opinion: When it comes to the highly-publicized #OscarsSoWhite controversy – in which movie fans and members of the entertainment industry’s workforce have openly criticized the lack of diversity in Hollywood – some parallels can be drawn to the lack of diversity within the social profit sector, according to one CEO.  (Chronicle, 2/25)

PHILANTHROPY | Exponent Philanthropy, the Fund for Shared Insight, and the Chronicle of Philanthropy present the next video in their new series called Philanthropy Lessons, in which funders share their experiences and what they’ve learned in their philanthropic careers. Check out the video and stay tuned for more through June.

COMMUNITY
– The Fund for Children, Youth, and Families at The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region is accepting request for proposals. Proposals must be submitted through the online application system no later than 4:00 PM, Thursday, March 31, and final grant decisions will be announced in August. Eligibility requirements, proposal guidelines, and submission instructions are available at www.fund4cyf.org.

 The Community Food Rescue Mini-Grants Program, available to help social profit organizations build infrastructure and increase capacity for the food recovery system, is accepting applications until March 1.For more information, contact Astoria Aviles.

ECONOMY
– Eighteen months following the opening of the first stations along WMATA’s Silver Line, economic development surrounding the stations is said to be taking off. (Inside NoVa, 2/23)

–  Low-Income Programs Not Driving Nation’s Long-Term Fiscal Problem (CBPP, 2/24)


Did you read today’s post while sitting at your desk eating lunch? Stop doing that! We’ll be here when you get back.

– Ciara

How misdemeanors can lead to homelessness

HOMELESSNESS/HOUSING
Washington City Paper provides a firsthand account of the ways in which misdemeanors can often come back to haunt those convicted, particularly when it comes to obtaining necessities like housing. (WCP, 11/13)

[…] even minor brushes with the law leave ripple effects lasting far beyond when a fine was paid or sentence served, making it hard to get a job, housing, and other necessities. Public and assisted housing providers are allowed to screen applicants for their criminal histories, but […] it’s over-enforced and frequently far beyond the legal guidelines laid out in the Fair Housing Act.

– In D.C., members of a homeless tent community face being pushed out after their 14-day notification period has ended. Some cite encampments as a preferred option to potential safety threats while staying in shelters. Officials and health specialists are working to provide them with supportive services and permanent housing. (WTOP, 11/16)

ECONOMY/REGION | In their biannual survey of small business owners in the Greater Washington Region, Bank of America found that the small business market is hiring faster than any other it surveyed, and that 81 percent expect to grow their businesses over the next five years – a positive outlook for the local economy. (WBJ, 11/17)

COMMUNITY | The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region has announced that they will honor The Horning Family Fund with the 2016 Civic Spirit Award at their Annual Celebration of Philanthropy on March 14, 2016. Since 1990, the fund has helped to build communities where families thrive and children are nurtured to achieve their greatest potential. For more information about the event, contact Jenny Towns.

FOOD/VIRGINIA | In Loudoun County’s “transition area” (the area between suburban subdivisions and rural land) a 4,000-acre development is making the idea of farm-to-table a high priority for the community. (WaPo, 11/16)

GENDER EQUITY
– According to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal, men’s weekly median earnings  have increased twice as much as women’s weekly median earnings in the first three-quarters of 2015. Researchers hope that trends from this year don’t point to an ever-widening gap. (Atlantic, 11/17)

For Women, Income Inequality Continues into Retirement (NPR, 11/17)

IMMIGRATION | The Brookings Institution recently explored whether or not the lives of Hispanic immigrants and their families are economically better off once settling in the U.S. The data reveal mixed results about the upward mobility of immigrants and their children. (Atlantic, 11/16)


Can you name these North American cities based solely on their night sky views?

-Ciara

Friday roundup – October 26 through October 30, 2015

THIS WEEK IN YOUTH
– The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region released a new report on the perspectives of black and African American youth in Montgomery County, and offered recommendations for the school system and community to improve outcomes. (WaPo, 10/22)

THIS WEEK IN HEALTHCARE
– The Association of American Medical Colleges released a report that found that, although more black men have graduated from college over the last few decades, there were fewer black men in medical school in 2014 than in 1978. Newly released numbers for 2015, however, show a modest gain in enrollment since 2014. (WAMU, 10/24)

– A number of hospitals in D.C. are feeling the strain of patients who have been abandoned in their care. Some have banned together to create a task force to better address the challenges. (WBJ, 10/27)

Pediatricians are being encouraged to look further into the socioeconomic circumstances of their patient’s families, as 14 percent of American households are considered food insecure. (Atlantic, 10/26)

THIS WEEK IN CSR
– Tim McClimon, president of the American Express Foundation and head faculty member for the Institute for CSR, shared how his company works to minimize its operational impact on the environment. (American Express, 10/26)


WRAG’S COMMUNITY CALENDAR
Click the image below to access WRAG’S Community Calendar. To have your event included, please send basic information including event title, date/time, location, a brief description of the event, and a link for further details to: myers@washingtongrantmakers.org.


Calendar won’t display? Click here.


Sometimes, you can’t rely on online reviews.

– Ciara

New report considers the perspectives of black and African American youth in Montgomery County

YOUTH/MARYLAND
A new report commissioned by The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region examines the perspectives of black and African American youth in Montgomery County, and offers recommendations for improving their circumstances within the community and school system. The report follows a similar study on Latino youth in the county from last year. (WaPo, 10/22)

The report’s four main recommendations include that the school system work with others to lower dropout rates and close the achievement gap for African American students and that the county create “a coordinated array of services and supports” to reconnect youths to education and the workforce.

Click here to access the full report, Connecting Youth to Opportunity: How Black and African American Youth Perspectives Can Inform a Blueprint for Improving Opportunity in Montgomery County, Maryland.

EDUCATION/VIRGINIA | Virginia’s Divide in School Funding is One of the Nation’s Worst (The Half Sheet, 10/22)

DISTRICT/HOMELESSNESS | For many people, a storage unit is simply a place to drop off items you don’t want to look at for a while. For some others, a storage unit is a place to take refuge from the outside world. In D.C., one such storage facility, where a number of homeless individuals have taken up shelter, is set to be demolished. (WaPo, 10/22)

CSR/ENVIRONMENT | Tim McClimon, president of the American Express Foundation and head faculty member for the Institute for CSR, discusses how his company works to minimize its operational impact on the environment. (American Express, 10/26)

HEALTHCARE/EQUITY 
– A recent study looked at the disparities in the usage of online health tools by patients with chronic kidney disease. Those who were black, older, poor, or unmarried were more likely to lack access to e-health interventions that could help improve their conditions. (WAMU, 10/23)

There Were Fewer Black Men in Medical School in 2014 Than in 1978 (WAMU, 10/24)


Have a look at these amazing Halloween costumes made by kids in the region.

– Ciara

The Community Foundation in Montgomery County appoints Anna Hargrave as new Executive Director

COMMUNITY 
The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region (CFNCR) has appointed Anna Hargrave as the new Executive Director of the Montgomery County office. Hargrave has served at The Community Foundation for nine years in many roles. Bruce McNamer, president and CEO of CFNCR said of the appointment:

“Anna is a strong, effective, and generous leader. She has the perfect combination of on-the-ground experience and strategic vision that we need to support and grow our work in Montgomery County. I join the Board and my colleagues in congratulating her on this appointment and look forward to working with her in this new capacity.”

FOOD ACCESS
A new study published by the American Journal of Public Health finds that, despite the presence of ‘big-box retailers’ who have begun selling fresh produce in areas considered food deserts, many American shoppers still opt for junk food options. The question of whether it’s the type of store or consumer preference that leads to unhealthy choices remains unanswered for researchers. (NPR, 10/14)

CHILDREN/EDUCATION | Hispanic student enrollment has surged in the Montgomery County school system, with Latino children now making up 30 to 32 percent of those in kindergarten through 4th grade. Youth advocates call for the county, and other areas seeing demographic changes, to go beyond programming in order to appropriately cater to students. (WaPo, 10/14)

HOUSING | In D.C., officials looking to reduce the number of vacant homes across the city are often met with challenges like legal loopholes. (WAMU, 10/9)

HOMELESSNESS | Debate On Replacing D.C. Shelter Finds That Bathrooms Are a Crucial Question (WAMU, 10/14)

HEALTH
–  A writer explores what the District’s proposed 16-week paid leave policy could mean for transgender patients pursuing transitional surgeries. (Blade, 10/9)

– A recent study finds that medical costs in D.C. are relatively affordable in comparison with other major U.S. cities despite the true costs of care varying widely within the city. (WBJ, 10/12)

Why 80 Percent of Addicts Can’t Get Treatment (Atlantic, 10/13)

ECONOMY | The states where people have the best and worst financial habits (WaPo, 10/13)


This week in new studies that will probably be debunked again by next week: this and this

– Ciara

Meet the 2015-2016 Philanthropy Fellows

(Back row: Catherine Oidtman, Rebecca Kates, Sarah Gordon; Front row: Hannah Davis, Dominique Covelli, Jessica Finkel)

The Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers is excited to welcome the 2015-2016 Philanthropy Fellows! Nine students from the University of Maryland’s Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership are working at WRAG member organizations this year:

  • Alex Gabriel is undertaking research for the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy’s foundation assessment initiative, Philamplify, with Lisa Ranghelli.
  • Catherine Oidtman is working with Crystal Townsend of the Healthcare Initiative Foundation, assisting with grants administration and the implementation of the HIF Scholars professional mentoring program.
  • Dominique Covelli is strengthening Grantmakers in Health’s communications and marketing efforts with Leila Polintan.
  • Hannah Davis is supporting the development and administration of WRAG’s Institute for Corporate Social Responsibility with Katy Moore.
  • Jessica Finkel is assisting with the design of Kaiser Permanente’s philanthropic strategy, working with Tanya Edelin.
  • Mary Kolar is supporting the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region’s Safety Net Initiative and Philanthropic Services grantmaking programs with Silvana Straw.
  • Rebecca Kates is supporting grantmaking, communications, and donor services with Amina Anderson at the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region.
  • Sarah Gordon is working with Phyllis Kaye and WRAG’s Healthy Communities Working Group on developing effective communications about the social determinants of health to reach a wider funder audience.
  • Shaundra Patterson is researching potential national funding partners with Nicky Goren in support of the Meyer Foundation’s new strategic plan.

These students are gaining valuable professional experience in philanthropy, making new connections in the community, and bringing fresh ideas and energy to their host organizations. To learn more about each fellow, click here. Check out our website to learn more about WRAG’s Philanthropy Fellows program.

The many hurdles for domestic violence survivors

AFFORDABLE HOUSING/HOMELESSNESS
For many families experiencing homelessness, the circumstances leading them there can be traced back to domestic violence. In D.C., obstacles, like a lack of affordable housing, make recovery much more difficult. (WCP, 8/28)

The problem is with mid- and long-term shelter: The District’s competitive real estate landscape, as well as its complicated victim compensation programs and antiquated city code, make it difficult to create a consistently reliable network of places to stay after the survivor is out of immediate danger.

ECONOMY/REGION
– The Washington Post recently asked D.C. business leaders, as well as WRAG president Tamara Copeland, their thoughts on how the region should respond to the effects of sequestration. (WaPo, 8/29)

– Last week, many of us learned that D.C. is the most expensive city to raise a family of four, particularly due to high child care costs. Many of us also wondered why in the world child care is so expensive in the city. WAMU explores the reason. (WAMU, 8/28)

Millennials have transformed Arlington, but will they stay? (WaPo, 8/29)

EDUCATION
– Opinion: Natalie Wexler, education blogger/editor of Greater Greater Education and DC Eduphile, and trustee of the Omega Foundation, discusses in the New York Times how the Common Core education standards can tilt the scales in the struggle for skills vs. knowledge in today’s classrooms. (NYT, 8/28)

 Opinion: Former WRAG Board member Patrick Corvington writes about the stunning correlation between asthma and lead poisoning as they relate to school attendance. (HuffPo, 8/27)

Related: In a previous edition of What Funders Need to Know, WRAG discussed the link between safe and healthy housing and education outcomes.

PHILANTHROPY |  The Chronicle of Philanthropy has compiled a number of resources for organizations looking to prepare for the wave of Americans turning 65 years old – about 10,000 people each day. (Chronicle, 8/31)

TRANSIT | Here are three potential scenarios for future expansion plans for Metro’s Silver Line to Dulles Airport. (Loudoun Times-Mirror, 8/28)

JOBS | The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region has two exciting new openings: An Executive Director for the Community Foundation in Montgomery County, and a Grants Associate.


A sociology lecturer-turned-artist is going to beaches and putting all our sandcastles to shame.

– Ciara

New data on average household income by Metro station

REGION
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has released new data on the average household income of Metrorail riders by line and station. The visualization also shows how income levels rise and dip at various times throughout the day (GGW, 7/7):

You can see the Washington region’s wide range of income levels in the data visualization, which uses data from Metro’s 2012 rider survey. This visualization is different from similar ones in that it uses self-reported data from Metrorail riders.

A high quality transit system is a key to ensuring opportunities for people of every socioeconomic status.

– Loudoun Schools fight hunger through summer meal program (Loudoun Times, 7/7)

Related: Interested in learning more about the needs of Loudoun County? Join WRAG on Tuesday, July 14 at 1:00 PM for Loudoun Philanthropy: Next steps for developing a strong social sector. This meeting is open to the community and is supported by the Claude Moore Charitable Foundation, the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia, the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, and the Middleburg Community Center. Click here to find out how to register.

– Can you afford to retire in Loudoun County? (Loudoun Times, 7/8)

AFFORDABLE HOUSING | In Arlington County, a new citizen’s group is concerned about the discrepancies in where the county’s additional affordable housing units will be clustered. The group worries that there are disproportionate numbers of affordable housing being built in certain areas, which will lead to a great deal of socioeconomic segregation. (ARLnow, 7/7)

PHILANTHROPY | The Center for Effective Philanthropy has released a new publication, Investing and Social Impact: Practices of Private Foundations, which takes a look at the state of practice of impact investing and negative screening at large, private U.S.-based foundations. (CEP, 5/2015)

EDUCATION
– EdBuild has released a new interactive map that displays the poverty rates in each of the school districts in the United States. You can access the map here. (WaPo, 7/8)

– The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) released a new report on the differences in the quality of preparation students in high-poverty schools receive compared with students in low-poverty schools. The study, Course, Counselor, and Teacher Gaps: Addressing the College Readiness Challenge in High-Poverty High Schoolsanalyzes 100 of the largest school districts in the U.S. (PND, 7/5)

COMMUNITY | The Foundation Center offers a multi-functional training facility for rent for groups looking to host meetings, conferences, seminars, or computer-based training programs. For more information, click here.


Are your reusable grocery bags making you buy more cookies?

– Ciara

Promoting effective philanthropy for Greater Washington | A second quarter report to the community

By Tamara Copeland
President
Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers

A few years ago, there was a lot of talk in the social profit sector about moving from good to great. Some in that sector may be surprised to learn that folks in philanthropy have been having a similar conversation. What does it take to ensure effective philanthropy? How can we ensure that funds are being invested in the best way to truly improve the region?

So, for the second quarter of 2015, WRAG took “promoting effective philanthropy” as our focus:

WRAG’s “Fundamentals of CSR” seminar, held in April, aimed to promote effective partnerships between corporate funders and the region’s social profit community. Our belief was that corporate philanthropy’s impact would be strengthened by having community partners who better understood the unique philanthropic perspective of corporations. Over 50 members of the local social profit community participated in this very well-received workshop and told us that their knowledge about CSR improved from an average of 4.8 on a 1-10 scale before the seminar, to 7.9 by the end of the two-day seminar. Great. Now, we have to wait a bit to see if that knowledge gain makes a difference.

In May, Community Wealth Building took front and center as we hosted – along with the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, the Consumer Health Foundation, and City First Enterprises – the first community update on this initiative. The standing-room-only audience was eager to learn the status of the first business launched under the community wealth building umbrella, and to consider if they saw a place for themselves in this initiative. Many did! So, after several years of planning, community wealth building is taking off in our region. Great? I sure think so.

Next, affordable housing. We all know the current state of this as a crisis in our region. In May, WRAG and Enterprise Community Partners collaborated to present to the Federal City Council on a new funding pool that we are establishing for developers of affordable housing units. It will provide these developers with access to low interest bridge loans. This is exciting and innovative work for WRAG, and is creating buzz as we move into the impact investing arena. Stay tuned for an announcement next month about how you can be involved in this effort, too. It’s not just for institutional philanthropists. We can all play a role in enabling affordable housing in our region. Definitely a move from good (info gathering) –> to great (taking action and making a difference).

And, last, but definitely not least, what will it take to move the social profit sector in Loudoun County from good to great? More communication across sectors and more targeted and increased philanthropic investments. To get there, WRAG hosted our first philanthropy conference in Loudoun County. Over 100 people attended, including 40 funders, along with representatives of social profit organizations and local government. Now that interest in the county has been kindled, the next step is a meeting this summer to really talk about how to move from interest to action.

There will be no lazy, hazy days of summer at WRAG. Moving from good to great takes time, energy, and focus. We’re glad to play a part with philanthropy in our region. Happy summer everyone!


You can read Tamara’s first quarter report to the community about growing philanthropy in our region here

New reports on the critical need for affordable housing in the Greater Washington Region

AFFORDABLE HOUSING/REGION
In response to alarming data surrounding housing affordability in the region, the Greater Washington Housing Leaders Group (GWHLG) presents a new report by Nonprofit Quarterly columnist Rick Cohen. The report – supported by Enterprise Community Partners, Citi Foundation, and WRAG – highlights the need for collaboration to invest in solving the region’s affordable housing crisis. Click here to access the full report, Call the Question: Will the Greater Washington Region Collaborate and Invest to Solve its Affordable Housing Shortage? 

Since June 2014, the Greater Washington Housing Leaders Group – a collection of more than a dozen public and private sector leaders concerned about housing affordability – has been meeting to examine: 1) the nature of the affordable housing shortage in the greater Washington area; 2) the relationship of housing affordability to economic growth; and 3) strategies to increase affordable housing for low- and moderate-income households in the region.

In July 2014, The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region released new research, Housing Security in the Washington Region, prepared by the Urban Institute and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments based on 2011 data, the most recent available. A key finding of the study concludes that, currently, 250,000 households (including 147,000 renter households) making less than 80 percent of the area median income are paying more than half of their gross income on housing costs.

The full extent of the affordable housing shortage required an analysis of future economic growth and accompanying populations. Research from the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis (CRA) shows that future growth industries for our region will be in the retail, hospitality, healthcare, and construction sectors – jobs which pay lower wages. Thousands of critical jobs in today’s workforce also fall in the lowerto moderate-income range, including teachers, health care professionals, entry level office workers, and local government employees. In 2015, CRA developed affordable housing need projections based on their latest regional economic outlook projections showing a need for the region to provide 149,000 new low-income housing units between 2011 and 2023 to accommodate projected job growth in the region.

 

– Another newly-released report (mentioned above) by Jeannette Chapman of the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis – commissioned by Enterprise Community Partners, and supported by GWHLG – focuses on regional solutions for Greater Washington’s affordable housing needs by the year 2023. The report titled, The Greater Washington Region’s Future Housing Needs: 2023, can be found here.

– The Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers (HAND) has released a public service announcement campaign to raise awareness about the great need for affordable housing using statistics about the average take-home pay for the professionals who are often very important in our daily lives. Have you seen this PSA around yet?

What’s ‘new’ in affordable housing? Not a lot — yet (Elevation DC, 6/19)

EDUCATION/DISTRICT | After a recent independent evaluation on the state of D.C. schools by the National Research Council, education leaders agree that although the system has come a long way, it still needs a lot of work to get to where it needs to be. (WaPo, 6/22)

POVERTY | A quarter of Americans are one emergency away from financial ruin (WaPo, 6/23)


How’s this for a real Metro map? What do you think?

– Ciara