Tag: Montgomery County

Making solar power available to low-income DC residents

ENVIRONMENT/EQUITY | D.C., which is committed to getting half of its energy from renewable sources by 2032, has set aside almost a third of its funding for solar initiatives to specifically target low-income residents. Besides not having the considerable resources needed to access solar power, lower-income households often face energy bills that are disproportionately high (Atlantic, 7/26):

While the city’s highest-profile efforts have focused on the availability of housing, it is now devoting some attention to helping poorer households save money on their energy bills. Utility bills for low earners can eat up as much as 10 percent of household income, according to a report from Groundswell, a nonprofit focused on energy issues. For the highest 20 percent of earners, utilities make up less than 2 percent of expenditures. But it’s not just a matter of percentages: Poorer families actually tend to have higher utilities bills, usually because their homes are less energy-efficient. On average, a monthly utility bill cost an American household around $115 in 2013, by Groundswell’s calculations, but poorer families were significantly more likely to have bills that topped $200 every month.

EDUCATION | The new head of Montgomery County Public Schools, Jack Smith, sees the racial achievement gap as being the most critical challenge facing the county’s school system. (WaPo, 7/26)

HEALTH | The DC Department of Health launched a pilot program earlier this year to make a life-saving drug that reverses the effects of opioid overdoses called Narcan available to drug users, but so far demand for the drug has far outstripped supply. (CP, 7/21)

EARLY ED/WORKFORCE/EQUITY | A new report finds that, thanks to extremely low pay, nearly half of the country’s childcare workers receive some form of government assistance. (WaPo, 7/11)

HOMELESSNESS | Homeless in relentless heat (WaPo, 7/26)

NONPROFITS | Opinion: New Overtime Rules Are Good for Nonprofits — and Good for America (Chronicle, 7/26)

GIVING | Giving Up Only Slightly in First Half of 2016, Report Says (Chronicle, 7/26)


Oh how lovely.

-Rebekah

P.S. The (Almost) Daily will be back on Friday.

First citywide program for connecting black women with HIV prevention drugs coming to DC

HIV/AIDS 
A $1 million investment from the MAC AIDS Fund will go toward making D.C. the first major city to get a program that will connect black heterosexual women (the second-highest group of new HIV infections) in the District with pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP. (Slate, 6/17)

In 2009, D.C. declared an HIV epidemic that rivaled those in many African nations, with around 3 percent of the city’s residents living with HIV. In some areas and age groups, it was closer to 5 percent. Though targeted prevention efforts have cut D.C.’s new-diagnosis rate by almost 60 percent since then, the city still has an HIV rate nearly twice as high as the state with the next highest rate, Louisiana, and nearly 4 percent of black residents are infected. In D.C. and across the country, HIV is a racialized epidemic among women: As of 2012, 92 percent of D.C. women living with HIV were black.

Channing Wickham, executive director of Washington AIDS Partnership, which is at the forefront of these efforts, had this to say:

The Washington AIDS Partnership is excited to be at the center of Washington, D.C.’s goal to “end HIV” through the soon-to-be released “90/90/90/50 by 2020” plan, and innovative HIV prevention strategies such as  Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for women. Stay tuned for a major announcement with more details on June 30!

RACISM/INEQUALITY | Marcela Brane, Herb Block Foundation president and CEO, shares with WRAG this year’s winner of the Foundation’s annual Herblock Prize for Editorial Cartooning, and the enduring impact and significance of the political cartoonist in society. Check out the winning cartoon, “Racist EZCash,” by Mark Fiore(Daily, 6/20)

REGION | Leaders of Washington’s former bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics are said to be keeping up the momentum of their efforts by continuing to meet to discuss objectives for further regional cooperation, even without the possibility of the summer games. (WBJ, 6/17)

DISTRICT
Unemployment rates in D.C.’s ward 7 and 8 are at the lowest levels in several years, according to newly-released federal data from the Department of Employment Services. (WCP, 6/17)

– A report by the District’s Office of Revenue Analysis examines the gender pay gap among the city’s workforce. While men make more than women for the same work in most industries, D.C.’s nonprofit sector is shown to be one area where women often make more than men in similar positions. (WBJ, 6/17)

–  This Is The Insane Amount of Money it Takes To Be Considered “Wealthy” in DC (Washingtonian, 6/17)

EDUCATION
Montgomery County schools have adopted a new budget officials hope will narrow the school system’s achievement gap and lower class sizes. (WaPo, 6/17)

– Data show that more than 1.3 million U.S. students were homeless in 2013-2014. Advocates are looking to bring greater awareness and support to youth experiencing homelessness and extreme poverty, and a new report surveying homeless youth reveals that many schools may be failing to help students. (WaPo, 6/17)

HEALTH/YOUTH
– According to estimates, there are still 37 million homes in the U.S. that contain lead-based paint and 6 million that recieve drinking water through lead pipes. With children shown to absorb more lead than adults, the American Academy of Pediatrics is urging physicians to be more proactive about testing children for exposure. (NPR, 6/20)

Video: Can the U.S. End Teen Pregnancy? (Atlantic, 6/14)


Just in case you haven’t heard, Clevelanders are very, very happy today.

– Ciara

In search of funding certainty for Metro system

TRANSIT/REGION
Acknowledging the Metro transit system as “the lifeblood of the region,” the Greater Washington Board of Trade and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments look to other regional transit systems’ funding sources for inspiration, and continue to rally for greater support behind a dedicated funding source for our own region’s transit system. (WBJ, 6/14)

After saying in May they would have a funding proposal crafted by September, officials with the Greater Washington Board of Trade and Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments [COG] now say they will slow down the process. They now expect to have a plan by the end of the year but will spend a year garnering support before taking it to the Virginia and Maryland general assemblies in early 2018.

The groups said COG will help determine a metric to measure Metro’s progress to boost the argument for more money.

POVERTY/HOUSING/EQUITY | Using some adorable cartoons to drive home the point, Vox explores the effects that living in certain environments can have on a person’s life – particularly for African Americans. Montgomery County, Maryland is used as one example of what can happen when children from low-income families move to wealthier neighborhoods. (Vox, 6/6)

ARTS/EQUITY | Who Can Afford To Be A Starving Artist? (Createquity, 6/14)

EDUCATION/WORKFORCE | While quality early-childhood education often receives widespread support, wages for childcare workers remain low, despite increasing demands to deliver good outcomes. (Atlantic, 6/14)

HEALTH/POVERTY | What Happens When You Can’t Afford Self-Care? (Talk Poverty, 6/13)


What does your dog wear on special occasions? These canines are redefining glamour. 

– Ciara

Continued population growth in Montgomery County

MARYLAND
Though the rate of growth remains low, Montgomery County saw the largest population increase in Maryland last year, according to figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. (Bethesda, 5/19)

The county’s estimated population as of July 1, 2015, was 1,040,116, meaning a population boost of 9,640 since 2014.

PUTTING RACISM ON THE TABLE/RACIAL EQUITY
– In this thoughtful blog post available in both English and SpanishConsumer Health Foundation board member Silvia Salazar reflects on the Putting Racism on the Table series and shares how the sessions have had a meaningful impact on her life by providing her with new ideas for viewing the world around her. (Daily, 5/19)

COMMUNITY | On Tuesday, May 24 at 9:30 a.m., The Lois & Richard England Family Foundation will host an opportunity to learn more about the 11th Street Bridge Park. Individuals interested in attending should RSVP to Irfana Noorani (irfana@bridgepark.org) to be added to the guest list.

HEALTH
– Through a partnership with the D.C. Department of Health, the public health group HIPS has begun distributing naloxone to in an effort to fight opioid drug overdoses in the District. (WCP, 5/18)

– For the third year in a row, the Washington region was named as the fittest metro area in the U.S. (WBJ, 5/18)

– America’s Health Segregation Problem (Atlantic, 5/18)

PHILANTHROPY
– A growing number of grantmakers are moving beyond the “overhead myth” to provide general operating grants and funding for administrative expenses for social profit organizations. WRAG’s colleague organization in Illinois, Forefront, shares some of their efforts to contribute to the shift in practices within their community. (Chronicle, 5/18) – Subscription Required

Opinion: Billionaire Manoj Bhargava shares his personal approach to philanthropy and why he thinks other philanthropists should consider an “attitude shift.” (Chronicle, 5/2)

– Program-Related Investments: Will New Regulations Result in Greater and Better Use? (NPQ, 5/12)

WORKFORCE
– Based on the new Department of Labor regulations expanding overtime benefits to full-time, salaried employees who make up to $47,476 a year, an estimated 4.2 million workers will be impacted – many of whom work at social profit organizations. (Chronicle, 5/18) – Subscription Required

– As more and more of the baby boomer generation retires out of the workforce, the generation’s business owners are being encouraged to transfer their company’s ownership to workers in order to improve communities and promote wealth distribution. (Co.Exist, 5/18)

TRANSITMetro Releases Finalized Long-Term Maintenance Plan. See How Your Commute Will Be Affected. (WCP, 5/19


Will you be biking to work tomorrow?

– Ciara

New video is live – Putting Racism on the Table: Implicit Bias

PUTTING RACISM ON THE TABLE/WRAG
The third video in the Putting Racism on the Table series is now live! The video features Julie Nelson, director of the Government Alliance on Race & Equity at the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society, speaking on implicit bias. After you’ve had a chance to view the video, we encourage you to share your thoughts on the series or on the specific topic via Twitter using the hashtag #PuttingRacismOnTheTable, or by commenting on WRAG’s Facebook page. We also suggest checking out the viewing guide and discussion guide to be used with the video. Both can be found on our website.

WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland had this to say of the new release:

We are halfway through the video releases from WRAG’s Putting Racism on the Table series! We appreciate you continuing to share your thoughts from the Professor john a. powell installment on structural racism, and the Dr. Robin DiAngelo installment on white privilege. We hope you’ll keep the conversation going with this latest release, as Julie Nelson highlights the ways in which bias and racism play out at the individual, institutional, and structural levels.

COMMUNITY
– The Community Foundation for Loudoun and Northern Fauquier CountiesGive Choose day, a 24-hour fundraising campaign for 60 area social profit organizations, is in full swing!

– The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities is seeking advisory review panelists for its upcoming grant season. D.C residents can nominate themselves or their peers to serve. Find out more about the opportunity here.

– The Healthcare Initiative Foundation has awarded a $100,000 grant to Mobile Medical Care, Inc. (MobileMed) and Aspire Counseling to support a collaborative program providing integrated behavioral health services for underserved Montgomery County residents.

EDUCATION/POVERTY
A recent study by Stanford researchers finds that students in school districts with the highest concentrations of poverty score an average of four grade levels below their more affluent peers in the richest school districts. The study also finds large achievement gaps between white students and their African American and Hispanic classmates, especially in places where there are large economic disparities. (NYT, 4/29)

WORKFORCE/EQUITY
– AudioLocal D.C. STEM Careers Are Soaring – But For Whom? (WAMU, 5/3)

– A new report looks at the links between higher hourly wages and lower rates of crime. According to projections in the report, “raising the minimum wage to $12 by 2020 would result in a 3 to 5 percent crime decrease (250,000 to 510,000 crimes) and a societal benefit of $8 to $17 billion dollars.” (Atlantic, 5/3)


Want to learn how to prepare cuter, faster (and I do mean very cute and very fast)  meals? This is the cooking show for you.

– Ciara

Another year of decline in domestic migration

REGION/ECONOMY
A new report from George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis looks at the migration trends of the region’s population. According to the report, the region experienced its second straight year of decline in domestic migration. (WBJ, 3/28)

Domestic migration was responsible for a loss of 25,200 people from 2013 to 2014, according to the report. The last time the region had positive domestic migration was from 2013 to 2014, when 25,200 moved here.

[…]

People are leaving the region for a combination of factors that also includes overall affordability — child care and housing are the biggest — and the growth and opportunities in other areas of the country. Some U.S. regions had sluggish economies themselves right after the Great Recession but have recently seen stronger growth.

Center director Terry Clower also cites research from The Roadmap for the Washington Region’s Future Economy for its recommendations on ways the economy can improve.

Related: Last year, the 2030 Group’s Bob Buchanan and the Center for Regional Analysis’s Stephen Fuller undertook an extensive research project called, The Roadmap for the Washington Region’s Future Economy, to recommend ways the region can reposition itself to remain competitive in the global economy. WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland also shared how philanthropy in the region might respond and collaborate with other sectors to meet challenges facing our communities. (Daily 1/15)

– Both D.C. and Montgomery County are eyeing a minimum wage increase to $15. (WAMU, 3/25)

HOUSING
– In their latest blog post, the D.C. Office of Revenue Analysis explores how rents in the city are so high despite many residences being subject to rent control. (District, Measured, 3/23)

NPR takes a glimpse into the courtrooms of D.C.’s Landlord and Tenant Branch where mostly low-income renters and their landlords squabble over issues of rent payments and substandard living conditions. (NPR, 3/28)

ARTS
– In Reston, officials are revisiting the allocation of funds for public art. (Reston Now, 3/25)

– D.C.’s Fillmore Arts Center will be saved for another year (WaPo, 3/25)

PHILANTHROPY
A recent survey looks at the philanthropic activity predictions of 400 leading private bankers and wealth advisors who manage around $500 billion in assets for ultra-high net worth individuals. (NPQ, 3/24)

– Have a look at Fortune‘s 2016 list of the World’s Greatest Leaders in philanthropy, arts, business, government and more. (Fortune, 3/2016)

CSR/SOCIAL PROFITS | Audio: How Nonprofits and Corporations Can Join Forces (Chronicle, 3/25)

EDUCATIONHow to Graduate More Black Students (Atlantic, 3/23)


Do you live in a paper napkin, cloth napkin, or paper towel household?

– Ciara

Friday roundup – March 21 through March 25, 2016

THIS WEEK IN THE WRAG COMMUNITY
Reflections on implicit bias were shared by Board Chair Missy Young and lead staffer Dara Johnson from the Horning Family Fund. (Daily 3/24)

– The Consumer Health Foundation‘s Kendra Allen interviewed Sequnely Gray, Community Engagement Coordinator for So Others Might Eat and a TANF recipient, about her experience advocating for families on TANF and the impact of benefit time limits. (CHF, 3/21)

THIS WEEK IN EDUCATION/REGION
– A new report found significant racial disparities in the acceptance rates among selective academic programs at public schools in Montgomery County. (WaPo, 3/22)

 In Loudoun County, a proposal that would concentrate mostly low-income, majority Hispanic students into two schools is evoking memories of “separate but equal” policies of the past. (WaPo, 3/20) 

THIS WEEK IN HEALTH
–  Grantmakers in Health, with support from the Aetna Foundation, released a supplement on health equity innovations, published with the spring 2016 edition of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. The supplement highlights promising strategies and emerging approaches for building healthy, equitable, and sustainable communities. (SSIR, spring 2016)

–  OpinionThe color of heroin addiction — why war then, treatment now? (WaPo, 3/23)

THIS WEEK IN CSR
 The deadline to apply for the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce’s Outstanding Corporate Citizenship Awards is Friday, April 1. Hint for Nonprofits: Nominating your corporate partners is a great way to show your appreciation and deepen your relationship!

Related: Interested in learning how to build new, stronger, and more mutually beneficial corporate partnerships? Join WRAG and more than 20 CSR professionals from some of the region’s top companies for the 2016 Fundamentals of CSR workshop on April 14-15.


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.


Are you #TeamPancakes or #TeamWaffles? Personally, I found both to be far too filling.

– Ciara

Friday roundup – March 14 through March 18, 2016

THIS WEEK AT WRAG/THE WRAG COMMUNITY
 – WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland posed the question, “When was the last time you talked about racism?,” and explained her view on why you should start. (Daily, 3/15)

– Catherine Oidtman, Philanthropy Fellow at the Healthcare Initiative Foundation, shared what she’s learned about going “beyond dollars” in philanthropy. (Daily, 3/14)

Related for WRAG Members: We are now accepting applications from WRAG members interested in hosting Philanthropy Fellows this fall. For more information about this program and how to apply, click here.

Opinion: Lynn Tadlock, Deputy Executive Director of Giving at the Claude Moore Charitable Foundation and WRAG board chair, shared her views on why urgent reform is necessary to put an end to gerrymandering in Virginia. (Loudoun Times, 3/3)

THIS WEEK IN TRANSIT/INFRASTRUCTURE
 Why Washington’s transportation is a problem, in one map (GGW, 3/15)

– Opinion: We caused the Metro shutdown when we decided to let our cities decay (WaPo, 3/16)

THIS WEEK IN HEALTH/EQUITY
– WAMU released their new, four-part series on the continuing struggle for inclusion facing individuals with developmental disabilities in the District. (WAMU,  3/2016)

– The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation released their 2016 County Health RankingsIn Virginia, Loudoun County was number one in the overall ranking for health outcomes, and in Maryland, Montgomery County came out on top. (WTOP, 3/16)


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.


Who do you think is the most photographed man of the 19th century?

– Ciara

A glimpse into the region’s future

REGION
According to a new regional forecast from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, the region’s population will continue to grow steadily and will add nearly 1.5 million residents over the next 30 years. Job growth is also expected to be significant. Officials are concerned a surge in residents to the region will continue to present challenges in providing affordable housing and quality transportation. (WaPo, 3/9)

The [District] is projected to expand from 672,000 residents last year to 987,000 in 2045, when it will be just shy of replacing Prince George’s County as the region’s third-most-populous jurisdiction, according to the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG).

Fairfax and Montgomery counties will continue to rank first and second. They and other counties in the region will continue to grow. But only Charles County, which is a quarter of the District’s size, will gain population at a faster rate than the city.

Related: Last year, 2030 Group president Bob Buchanan and George Mason’s Center for Regional Analysis senior adviser and director of special projects Stephen Fuller, led the charge to undertake an extensive research project providing recommendations for ways in which the region can reposition itself to maximize potential and remain competitive in the global economy titled, The Roadmap for the Washington Region’s Future Economy. WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland also shared how philanthropy in the region might respond and collaborate with other sectors to meet challenges facing our communities. (Daily 1/15)

HEALTH
– As misconceptions change about what the “face of HIV/AIDS” looks like, grassroots efforts are proving to be helpful in empowering those who are newly diagnosed. (WTOP, 3/10)

– Medicaid Rules Can Thwart Immigrants Who Need Dialysis (WAMU, 3/8)

EDUCATION/HOMELESSNESS | With recently-announced plans to replace the D.C. General shelter with smaller facilities, some are growing concerned about what the changes may mean for overcrowding in surrounding schools. (WCP, 3/8)

PHILANTHROPY/GENDER EQUITY | Mind the Gap – How Philanthropy Can Address Gender-Based Economic Disparities (PND, 3/8)

ARTSOpinion: One theatergoer shares his experience watching a popular Broadway show featuring a diverse cast, and how he felt when he look around and noticed the audience was anything but. (NPR, 3/8)

JOBS | The Abell Foundation is seeking to fill its Grants Associate position.


This quick quiz will guess your age, marital status, and income based on which mobile apps you have on your phone. My own results came pretty close! 

– Ciara

Continued hope for growth in Prince George’s County

ECONOMY/MARYLAND
In Prince George’s County, residents are hoping for a major federal government office project that could provide a long-awaited economic boost to neighborhoods along Metro’s Green Line. (WaPo, 2/7)

From Naylor Road to the final stop at Branch Avenue, the corridor is an aging but civically active community that has been planning and pining for one project, one little spark to trigger its long-awaited economic revitalization.

The past two decades have brought mostly disappointment. But two bids to build an office complex for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services have renewed hopes that the economic renaissance the District is experiencing could spill over the border.

COMMUNITY/HOUSING/WRAG | Leadership Greater Washington (LGW) and WRAG recently teamed up on a discussion of housing affordability in the region as part of a session during their 18-month Thought Leadership Series. Check out some important topics that were raised at the event.

HOMELESSNESS/DISTRICT | D.C. has a long history of housing homeless families in motels (WaPo, 2/6)

IMMIGRATION/MARYLAND | Montgomery County, Maryland has welcomed more asylum-seeking individuals than most jurisdictions in the state over the past several years. Now, refugee assistance groups are asking for greater support in helping those individuals establish stable lives in their new place of residence, as meeting the high costs of living in the area prove to be challenging. (Bethesda Beat, 2/5)

ARTS
– The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) recently launched its DC Heritage Grant Program. The program replaces the Grants-in-Aid general operating support program and provides funding solely to social profit arts, humanities, and arts education organizations that have provided at least seven years of programs and activities in D.C. Click here for further application information. The deadline for application submission is February 26, 2016.

– The recently reopened Renwick Gallery has attracted a wide audience and has proven to be a digital success. (Washingtonian, 2/5)

EDUCATION | Fixing Schools Outside of Schools (Atlantic, 2/4)

JOBS | The Weissberg Foundation is seeking an Executive Director.


There was a big televised mini-concert yesterday, accompanied by a football game. Here’s a brief, visual history of those mini concerts throughout the years.

– Ciara