Friday roundup – May 16 through May 20, 2016

THIS WEEK IN RACIAL EQUITY
– Consumer Health Foundation board member Silvia Salazar shared her reflections on the Putting Racism on the Table series and how it has had a meaningful impact on her life in this blog post available in both English and Spanish. (Daily, 5/19)

– Caitlyn Duffy, project associate for Philamplify at the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy, discussed why she’s challenging philanthropy and other sectoral organizations to talk more explicitly about structural racism, and gave a shout out to WRAG’s Putting Racism on the Table series. (NCRP, 5/18)

THIS WEEK IN THE WRAG COMMUNITY
– In light of the coming dissolution of the DC Trust, WRAG submitted a letter on behalf of the region’s philanthropic community to D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, calling on the Council to maintain funding for out-of-school and summer programming for D.C.’s  children and youth in the FY17 budget.

Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers‘ president and CEO David Biemesderfer shared this open letter to foundations he signed as one of 22 nonprofit and philanthropy leaders, thanking foundations that have invested in nonprofit infrastructure. He also provided some examples of the important work Forum members Indiana Philanthropy Alliance, Maine Philanthropy Center, and WRAG are doing to strengthen communities nationwide. (Forum, 5/17)

THIS WEEK IN TRANSIT
– Metro Releases Finalized Long-Term Maintenance Plan. See How Your Commute Will Be Affected. (WCP, 5/19)


JOBS
Communications and Development Associate | Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing
Associate | Innovation Network, Inc. 
Research Assistant | Innovation Network, Inc. 
Part Time Bookkeeper/Accountant | ACT for Alexandria
Associate Director | Arabella Advisors
Associate Director (Conservation Focus) | Arabella Advisors
Director, Corporate Philanthropy | Council on Foundations
D.C. PrEP for Women Project Coordinator | Washington AIDS Partnership 

Visit WRAG’s Job Board for the latest job openings in the region’s social sector.


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.


Boston has found a poetic way to beat the rainy day blues.

– Ciara

Housing tops list of worries for low-income D.C. residents

POVERTY/HOUSING
In a new report, researchers surveyed more than 600 low-income District residents to examine their most persistent stressors. Survey results revealed that, by far, most poor residents found issues surrounding housing to be their biggest source of anxiety. (WaPo, 4/4)

The main takeaway: Finding and keeping affordable housing is by far the dominant stress among low-income residents — more so than concerns about food, education or domestic violence.

[…]

Sixty percent of respondents said they worried about not having any housing in the future.

– How the Federal Government Plans to Stop the ‘Worst-Case’ Housing Crisis (City Lab, 4/4)

COMMUNITY
– Jeanné Isler of the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP) shares a recent conversation with WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland on WRAG’s Putting Racism on the Table series, and NCRP’s enthusiasm about what lies ahead beyond the series. (NCRP, 4/5)

– Congratulations to Amy Owen of the Community Foundation for Loudoun & Northern Fauquier Counties on being one of the Loudoun Times-Mirror’s 16 Women To Watch in 2016!

ARTS
– Brookland in northeast D.C. will soon have its own Arts Park, with support from corporations and donors, including  the D.C. Commission on the Arts & Humanities. (WCP, 4/4)

– Following a big revival in 2012, the Howard Theater continues to face struggles with financial woes. (WaPo, 4/4)

– With Studio Space Scarce In D.C., Fillmore School Building To Offer Reprieve (WAMU, 4/5)

SOCIAL PROFITS | Exponent Philanthropy makes the case for funders to invest in social profit sector talent in order to yield greater results on performance and impact. (Philanthrofiles, 4/5)

VIRGINIA | Though Fairfax County remains one of the nation’s wealthiest counties, it has been unable to avoid the pitfalls of a stagnant local economy amid an influx of new, often lower-income, residents. (WaPo, 4/2)

HEALTH/RACISMThe disturbing reason some African American patients may be undertreated for pain (WaPo, 4/4)

JOBS | The Council on Foundations is hiring for the position of Director, Corporate Philanthropy. Find out more here!


Oopsie!

– Ciara

View the first video

PUTTING RACISM ON THE TABLE/WRAG
The first video in the “Putting Racism on the Table” series is now live! The video features Professor john a. powell, Professor of Law and Professor of African-American Studies and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, speaking on structural racism. After you’ve had a chance to view the video, we encourage you to share your thoughts on the series in general or on the specific topic via Twitter, using the hashtag #PuttingRacismOnTheTable, and on WRAG’s Facebook page. (Daily, 3/9)

POVERTY
– The American Academy of Pediatrics is encouraging a new policy that would have pediatricians begin screening children for poverty by asking their parents if they are able to meet their family’s financial needs. The move comes as part of an effort to improve mental health and public health outcomes in children, by addressing the impact of toxic stress caused by poverty. (USN, 3/9)

Related: Recently, Dr. Matthew Biel, Director of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the Georgetown University Medical Center, joined us as the opening speaker for WRAG’s 2016 Public Education Speaker Series, to discuss the impact of toxic stress on child development.

– A study out of the University of Michigan examined more than 100,000 American households’ purchasing habits of toilet paper over a period of seven years. Researchers found that when it comes to buying necessities (like toilet paper and other household items) it takes money to save money – further supporting the notion that it is expensive to be poor. (WaPo, 3/8)

Related: On Wednesday, May 18, we will hear from Eldar Shafir, co-author of Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much, on the psychological influence of scarcity. This event is open to the public with registration.

– Your chances at becoming poor may be higher than you think (WaPo, 3/8)

COMMUNITY | Congratulations to Consumer Health Foundation (CHF) on being awarded the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy’s (NCRP) Impact Award for Small/Midsized Private Foundation! CHF president and CEO Yanique Redwood also serves as vice president of the WRAG board. The awards ceremony will take place on Tuesday, May 3.

HOUSING/HOMELESSNESS | For some low-income families and individuals in need, strict zero-tolerance housing policies can create a vicious cycle in which they suddenly find themselves out of a place to call home. (Washingtonian, 3/7)

HEALTH | Medical Bills Still Take A Big Toll, Even With Insurance (NPR, 3/8)

DISTRICT | Mayor Muriel Bowser Announces Tech Hub Promoting Minority Companies (DCist, 3/8)

CSR | The Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce invites you to apply for the Outstanding Corporate Citizenship Awards. The application period is open through Friday, April 1, 2016, and is available online.


So…those cherry blossoms will be arriving a little sooner than expected.

– Ciara

There is no post racial America. Does philanthropy know?

PHILANTHROPY
As we celebrate the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. this week, it’s easy to think of the country as a dramatically different place than it was in the 1960s. In an op-ed in the Chronicle of Philanthropy, Tamara Lucas Copeland challenges the notion of a postracial America and explains why WRAG is working to foster a better understanding among funders about the dynamics of racism. (Chronicle, 1/21)

[P]hilanthropy’s commitment to aiding the poor continues today, through efforts to improve access to quality education, health care, and housing. Many donors and foundations consider work on such programs vital to attacking the root causes of inequity in America. They believe that if we keep focusing on financing ideas we know work, soon we will reduce the problems for both blacks and whites and eliminate all disparities.

But a growing number of grant makers in Washington have decided it’s important to challenge this notion, to recognize that the distinct, negative treatment of a group of people based solely on race is a major contributor to poverty and inequality in America. We believe that racism is rarely acknowledged or discussed by members of the public or within philanthropy. And we believe that until that silence ends, our region, and our country, won’t be able to take the steps needed to end racial inequities.

To learn more about Putting Racism on the Table, WRAG’s learning series for philanthropic CEOs and trustees, click here.

– The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP)  is taking nominations for foundations for their 2016 NCRP Impact Awards. You can nominate up to 10 foundations that demonstrate exemplary grantmaking, leadership in funding social change strategies, and commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equity.

HEALTH/FOOD | Grantmakers in Health shares policy options and recommendations that recently came out of a meeting of experts, funders, and health practitioners on the ways to support healthier eating policies – particularly around sugar-sweetened beverages that are disproportionately consumed by low-income individuals and ethnic minorities. (GIH, 1/19)

EDUCATION | According to new data, Maryland saw a record high of close to 880,000 students this school year – a 5,000 student increase from the previous school year. Most of the surge has taken place in Montgomery, Howard, Baltimore, Prince George’s and Anne Arundel counties. (WaPo, 1/ 20)

ARTS | With government-commissioned street art being a relatively new thing in the District, Washingtonian offers a glimpse at five D.C. street artists whose work has popped up throughout the area. (Washingtonian, 1/19) Some readers might recognize the work of Kelly Towles, the artist who created the centerpieces for WRAG’s 2011 annual meeting.

TRANSIT/INEQUALITY | Yet More Evidence That Bike-Share Isn’t Reaching the Poor (City Lab, 1/19)


Have you experienced a void in your life ever since the popular television series ‘Friends’ went off the air? Someone developed a computer program that can write new episodes…for better or for worse.

– 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.

A growing number of people living in high-poverty neighborhoods

POVERTY
The number of Americans living in high-poverty areas has steadily risen for years. According to a new analysis of Census data, the number of individuals living in those areas nearly doubled from 7.2 million in 2000 to 13.8 million in 2013 – and the effects are likely to last for years to come. (Atlantic, 8/9)

Half a century after President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a war on poverty, the number of Americans living in slums is rising at an extraordinary pace.

The number of people living in high-poverty areas—defined as census tracts where 40 percent or more of families have income levels below the federal poverty threshold—nearly doubled between 2000 and 2013, to 13.8 million from 7.2 million, according to a new analysis of Census data by Paul Jargowsky, a public-policy professor at Rutgers University-Camden and a fellow at The Century Foundation. That’s the highest number of Americans living in high-poverty neighborhoods ever recorded.

[…]

A child who grows up in a high-poverty area is likely to be poor when he grows up. Research out this year from Harvard shows that children who moved from poor areas to more affluent areas had higher incomes and better educational achievements than those who stayed in poor areas. Without dramatic changes, today’s children who live in high-poverty areas are going to grow up to be poor, too.

Related Event: On September 18, sociologist Dr. Karl Alexander of Johns Hopkins University will discuss findings of a groundbreaking 25-year study on the life-long consequences of being born into povertyThis Brightest Minds event is sponsored by the Jane Bancroft Robinson Foundation. The event is open to the public.  Click here to learn more and to register.

CSR | Congratulations to WRAG members Accenture, Citi, and IBM for being named finalists for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s 2015 Corporate Citizenship Awards! Click here to learn more about why these companies have been chosen as nominees for this competitive award.

HOMELESSNESS/VETERANS | Housing for Homeless Veterans Is Planned For Ex-Walter Reed Site (NYT 8/10)

COMMUNITY | The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy shares a positive experience in collaboration from a recent event held by the Association of Black Foundation Executives in partnership with DC Trust and The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation, focused on improving circumstances for black males. (NCRP, 8/7)

AGING | D.C. received high marks on a list ranking the best cities for aging in place based on the availability of technology-assisted services for things like meals, medical care, and transportation. (WBJ, 8/11)


This week, when Google announced its new parent company, the news went wild. Unfortunately, so did this unsuspecting man’s Twitter notifications.

– Ciara

D.C. Council votes on 2016 District budget

DISTRICT/BUDGET
As the D.C. Council and Mayor Bowser prepare to adopt a finalized 2016 budget, Washington Business Journal breaks down some of the key provisions being voted on and some of the areas where consensus has proven difficult (WBJ, 5/27):

Two main points of contention remain between the legislative and executive branches ahead of Wednesday’s vote.

The first is the number of police body cameras the District will acquire next year: The council, led by Public Safety Committee Chairman Kenyan McDuffie, is providing funding for only 1,200, and Bowser wants double that. Mendelson said the council is squarely behind McDuffie on this matter.

The second is the permanent expansion of the Marion Barry Summer Youth Employment Program to include individuals between 22 and 24 years old. The council will fund the expansion this summer, but not next year, Mendelson said. Young adults, he said, should be receiving workforce training either through D.C.’s community college or through various government programs, not working a “six week minimum wage job.”

Bowser on Tuesday signed a law expanding SYEP for 22-24 year olds, but only for the upcoming summer. She used the opportunity to lobby for future years.

ARTS | Grantmakers in the Arts and Foundation Center have released a new report, “Foundation Funding for Arts and Education,” that takes a look at trends in arts funding by private foundations using data from 1999 through 2012. (GIA, 5/18)

PHILANTHROPY | In their latest edition of Responsive Philanthropy, the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy looks at the subject of implicit bias, including how it can make its way into grantmaking, and offers valuable strategies for reducing it. (NCRP, Spring 2015)

AGING | In response to a large aging population, adult day services have emerged as a growing industry and a viable alternative to senior homes in places like D.C. (NPR, 5/23)

POVERTY | The Failures and Merits of Place-Based Initiatives (City Lab, 5/25)

MARYLAND/WORKFORCE | Maryland gains 16,400 jobs in April, highest total in 5 years (WBJ, 5/27)

SOCIAL JUSTICE | History can offer a glimpse into the possible outcomes of the recent protests that have erupted in several cities following incidents of police brutality. Research supports that one outcome in particular has been most persistent over the years. (WaPo, 5/21)

YOUTH | The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development has released a report on disengaged youth around the world who are not employed or in school. The report found that one in every six young people in the U.S. is disengaged. (WaPo, 5/27)


Do you think you can spell these National Spelling Bee winning words

– Ciara