RI Afterschool Report Released, Shows Need for Dedicated Funding

The Rhode Island Afterschool Network released “The State of Afterschool Learning Programs in Rhode Island 2019” report, supported by the GCRI members Rhode Island Foundation and United Way of Rhode Island.

The report provides an overview and highlights of the landscape of Out of School Time (OST) programs in Rhode Island, drawn from statewide convenings, stakeholder engagement, existing data and qualitative research.   

Several themes were highlighted in this report, particularly the benefit of engaging our children in structured, high-quality educational activities outside of school hours. Educational and developmental research demonstrates, and parents, teachers, childcare providers agree, to the importance of OST programs for promoting educational success, social and emotional learning, and racial equity for youth.  OST programs also support financial stability by allowing parents to remain productive and at work through the end of the business day. The report emphasizes that there is an opportunity to advance Rhode Island’s educational goals by supporting and investing in OST programs, and elevating and embedding oversight of OST programming within the Rhode Island Department of Education.

Full Report

Women’s Fund of RI Awards $50K in Grants to 5 Organizations to Advance Gender Equity

The Women’s Fund of Rhode Island (WFRI) announced a total of $50,000 in grant funding to five organizations to advance gender equity focused on WFRI’s 2019 advocacy priorities, including disparities for Women of Color, and more generally, economic justice and access to reproductive health and freedom.

The grant recipients were Building Futures, Girls Rock, RI Black Business Association, Sista Fire and Planned Parenthood.  

More information on WFRI

 

 

DHS, DOH Partner to Award Preschool-development Grants

As a result of a partnership between the RI Department of Health and the Department of Human Services, five health equity zones throughout the state have received a total of $360,170 in preschool-development grants.

The selected health equity zones will use the funds to help families prepare children to succeed in school.

“Family members are the first, and often the most important, educators in a child’s early life, yet vulnerable families face significant economic, social-emotional and other barriers to fulfilling that role,” said Womazetta Jones, R.I. Health and Human Services secretary and Children’s Cabinet co-chair. “The preschool-development grants will increase the accessibility, choice, affordability and intensity of programs that are available in these communities.”

The successful HEZ’s were Woonsocket, Central Providence, Pawtucket/Central Falls, Washington County and West Warwick.

 

Women’s Fund Signs Joint Statement on Sexism, Racism & Xenophobia; Encourages Women Candidates

On July 24, 2019, the Women’s Fund of Rhode Island was proud to sign a joint statement by hundreds of sister funds condemning the recent attacks on four of our country’s elected officials who are women of color, in response to chants of “Send them back!” The statement reads: ” Women’s and Girls’ grantmakers, organizations and supporters across the country stand together in condemning the recent vitriol shown towards our country’s female elected officials, and in particular, female elected officials of color.”

To these attackers and their defenders, we say this: ‘You do not represent the shared values that move our country forward.  These values recognize and embrace leadership from all walks of life, recognizing the strength of diversity. For more than 100 years, American women have fought to gain our rightful place in our government institutions.  We will not back down. You cannot erase our presence, nor keep us from taking our place as leaders of this great democracy. As you continue to judge and demean people by gender, country of origin, and skin color, we will take the high road. We will judge people by character and by actions alone.  We will never stop speaking out against the words and actions of those driven by sexism, racism, and xenophobia.

The Women’s Funding Network, its members and partners are steadfast in their support of women of ALL backgrounds who serve and aspire to serve our country in an elected capacity.

We support the active participation in our democracy by those who were not born here, but who have worked hard to become citizens and have pledged their loyalty to our country.  America has always been a country of immigrants. We do not turn our backs on these citizens, and we will not stand to let the actions of a few diminish the valuable contributions they have made to our society.

Your words were intended to divide. They did not. Together we stand, more united than ever.

This past Saturday, WFRI joined with the Women’s Fund of Southeastern Massachusetts and VoteRunLead to provide training to 60 women considering a run for political office. Participants practiced campaign “stump” speeches on the changes they wanted to make in their communities. When WFRI last ran this program in 2017, 18% of the participants ran for office and of those who ran, 60% won their seats.

The 19th Amendment to the U.S Constitution became law on August 26, 1920, giving women the right to vote. This date is now recognized nationwide as Women’s Equality Day. In preparation for the 100th Anniversary of this landmark decision, several organizations and volunteers are banding together to increase voter registration and the number of people voting in 2020.

WFRI will be hosting a training for volunteers on Aug. 26 from 3:00-4:30 pm in the State House Library on the RI voter registration process. Afterward, participants will gather on the State House steps for a picture and a commemorative “Toast to Tenacity” in tribute to the suffragists who fought for American women’s right to vote and in recognition that true gender equity for all has not yet been achieved. GCRI members are invited to attend the Toast without having to go to the training.

Both programs are sponsored by the Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea. Co-hosts include Vision2020, Planned Parenthood Votes! RI, RI NOW, The Woman Project, RI Coalition for Reproductive Freedom, RIDP Women’s Caucus, RI Democratic Women for Leadership and the RI Federation of Republican Women

Inequities in Charitable Giving Continue to Grow, Fueled by Tax Law

Dave Biemesderfer, CEO of United Philanthropy Forum

Data continues to come in to confirm a disturbing trend in our country: growing inequities in who is giving to charity and who is benefiting from it. This is happening amid a backdrop of an overall decline in charitable giving, fueled by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) passed by Congress.

The latest data to confirm these trends is from the well-respected 2019 “Giving USA” report released last week. The report shows that giving by foundations, corporations and individuals declined 1.7 percent in 2018, adjusted for inflation. This is the first drop in giving since 2013 and just the 13th decline since 1978, and has occurred despite assurances from Congress that the 2017 tax law would not negatively impact giving and in fact would increase it.

Read Dave’s full blog post

Resources for Educational Equity

Thanks to those of you who were able to attend this morning’s session on Education Disparities.  It was a compelling conversation about equity in both education and philanthropy. 

If you would like to listen to the audio of the session, please contact Nancy at Nancy.wolanski@uwri.org. Panelists were Marcela Betancur, Latino Policy Institute; Elizabeth Burke Bryant, RI Kids Count; Karla Vigil, EduLeaders of Color; Nick Donahue, Nellie Mae Education Foundation.

  • If you would like a copy of the Latino Policy Institute report on education disparities, as well as some policies recommended by the Schott Foundation and the National Education Policy Center for ensuring that all children have the opportunity to learn, regardless of their background or which school they attend, or Nellie Mae Education Foundation’s new principles centering their work around racial equity, please contact Nancy at Nancy.wolanski@uwri.org.
  • The Schott Foundation in Boston, which has done a lot of work around racial equity in education, is offering a webinar this Thursday, April 11 at 2:00pm if you’d like to learn more about Culturally Responsive CurriculaLearn more
  • Some of the handouts Nick shared are:

Paid in Full by Dorian O. Burton and Brian C.B. Barnes

The Road to Achieving Equity by Kris Putnam-Walkerly and Elizabeth Russell

Paying Attention to White Culture and Privilege by Gita Gulati-Partee

Where White Privilege Came From by Allan G. Johnson

  • Look for more information soon about our May GCRI session on Collective Impact.  We will be working with the Federal Reserve and Working Cities Challenge on an engaging session about developing deeper partnerships and co-creating with community partners.

Family Separation and Immigration Webinar and Resources

Family Separation and Immigration Webinar and Resources

Many of you are concerned with the current debate around the federal immigration policy on family separation.  Although an executive order has been released to address the components of the policy, there are still reports of separations, lack of clarity about the courts’ response to the EO, and the challenges of reuniting families.

Children, Youth and Family Funders Roundtable is hosting an “Immigration Funder Strategy Discussion” on Friday, July 13 2:30-3:30pm for funders interested in learning more about how your organization can use its expertise to enter the immigration space.  The webinar will have ideas for ways to communicate differently with peers and colleagues about the effects of immigration policy, and to better align strategies across issue areas.  This strategy discussion will be focused on supporting immigrant children and families!s, and four funders will share their strategies, including how they developed them and how they are linked with other issue areas.

Speakers:
· Denise Dell Isola, Irving Harris Foundation
· Sandra Martinez, The California Wellness Foundation
· Laura Speer, The Annie E. Casey Foundation
· Kavitha Sreeharsha, Emerson Collective
This webinar is part of the Children, Youth & Family Funders Roundtable conversation on the impact of immigration action on children and families. The Roundtable’s immigration work is done in partnership with Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees, Grantmakers Income Security Taskforce, and Early Childhood Funders Collaborative to ensure we are exploring our understanding of the cross section of issues faced by immigrant children and families.  Register

Our partner in United Philanthropy Forum, Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR) has released a sign on statement on family separation and immigration enforcement policies, signed by 160 philanthropic organizations.   GCIR has also released a document with ideas for philanthropic responses to the family separation crisis.

Our Forum partners, Hispanics in Philanthropy and Associated Grant Makers, have gathered resources for funders who want to learn more and/or get involved.

Statements Issued:

Dave Biemsderfer, CEO of United Philanthropy Forum, released a blog piece on the family separation policy
United Way of Mass Bay, The Boston Foundation, Jewish Philanthropies and Catholic Charities released a combined joint statement
Philanthropy California released a combined statement from Northern California, Southern California and San Diego Grantmakers

Hispanics In Philanthropy Resources

Hispanics in Philanthropy have launched an Emergency Response Fund, and issued the following statement on ways funders can respond.

5 Ways You Can Stand Up for Immigrant Children & Families TODAY

Ana Marie Argilagos, president and CEO of Hispanics in Philanthropy

It was 136 years ago when the funds to build the pedestal for the Statue of Liberty ran short. New Yorkers took action. They formed fundraising committees and collected donations from people across the city, including a kindergarten class that donated $1.35. Poet Emma Lazarus wrote a sonnet, “The New Colossus,” to help raise money. Her words — “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” — have inspired America’s approach to immigration ever since.

Today, these words etched into the Statue of Liberty are at risk. This month is Immigrant Heritage Month, intended to recognize and celebrate the vast contributions of immigrants in this country which was founded by immigrants. Instead, we are witnessing the worst human rights violations in generations.

Despite President Trump’s executive order ending his administration’s policy of separating immigrant children from their parents, the government will continue to treat all immigrants as criminals and to lock families in cages along the U.S.-Mexico border. Make no mistake: this executive order does not fix the damage inflicted on children or their families. Nor does it prevent future trauma. The Trump administration’s zero-tolerance immigration policy is intended to inflict pain, fear, and suffering on children and their parents.

We are better than these xenophobic government policies. We cannot stay silent. We cannot sit by and allow thousands of children and families to suffer traumas that will last a lifetime.

We must remember the lessons learned by our predecessors. We must look back at how Americans mobilized to bring our nation’s beacon of freedom, Lady Liberty, to our shores. Her existence is a constant reminder that we were once a country unified by the immigrant experience. We were and still are proud to be a country of immigrants.

Today, we must once again mobilize to show the world that new immigrants are cared for and welcomed with open arms. You do not have to be wealthy or a government official to take action. Just like the children who donated money to help raise the Statue of Lady Liberty two centuries ago, you too can do your part to ensure we remember our shared values.

HERE ARE A FEW WAYS YOU CAN HELP TODAY:

  1. Donate to HIP’s fund to support lasting services and support for immigrant families detained at the border.
  2. Contact your elected officials and hold them accountable. Tell them you expect them to do better, and to do it NOW.
  3. Contact the U.S. Department of Justice and submit your comments about the damage the current policies are inflicting on children and families.
  4. Contact the White House to demand they put an end to this cruelty and treat our immigrants humanely and with the dignity they deserve.
  5. Elevate your voice! HIP along with many other organizations will be gathering this June 30th at Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C. to protest this administration’s inhumane policy of ripping children away from their parents at the border. Join us in DC or at an event near you. Find out more at the Families Belong Together website.

Thank you, and may we all remember: We are in this together.

Associated Grant Makers Resources

http://www.agmconnect.org/grantmakers-philanthropic-advisors/resources/disaster-and-emergency-relief-resources

  • Greater Boston Immigrant Defense Fund is building Greater Boston’s capacity to protect and defend immigrant and refugee communities by increasing access to legal representation for individuals facing deportation proceedings and community education and preparedness programming
  • Cambridge Legal Defense Fund for Immigrantshas been established to help immigrants in Cambridge, Massachusetts get the legal services they need to stay, legally, in our country.
  • The ACLUis litigating this policy in California.
  • Al Otro Ladois a binational organization that works to offer legal services to deportees and migrants in Tijuana, Mexico, including deportee parents whose children remain in the U.S.
  • American Immigrant Representation Project(AIRP), which works to secure legal representation for immigrants.
  • CARA—a consortium of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, the American Immigration Council, the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association—provides legal services at family detention centers.
  • CASAin Maryland, D.C., Virginia, and Pennsylvania. They litigate, advocate, and help with representation of minors needing legal services.
  • CLINIC’s Defending Vulnerable Populationsproject offers case assistance to hundreds of smaller organizations all over the country that do direct services for migrant families and children.
  • The Florence Projectis an Arizona project offering free legal services to men, women, and unaccompanied children in immigration custody.
  • Houston Immigration Legal Services Collaborativehas a guide to organizations throughout Texas that provide direct legal services to separated children. Also listed within the guide are resources for local advocates, lawyers, and volunteers.
  • Human Rights Firstis a national organization with roots in Houston that needs help from lawyers too.
  • Kids in Need of Defenseworks to ensure that kids do not appear in immigration court without representation, and to lobby for policies that advocate for children’s legal interests.
  • The Kino Border Initiativeprovides humanitarian aid to refugees and migrants on both sides of the border. They have a wish-list of supplies they can use to help migrants and families staying in the communities they serve.
  • The Legal Aid Justice Centeris a Virginia-based center providing unaccompanied minors legal services and representation.
  • The National Immigrant Justice Centerrepresents and advocates for detained adults and children facing removal, supports efforts at the border, and represents parents in the interior who have been separated from their families as a result of aggressive enforcement.
  • The Northwest Immigrant Rights Projectis doing work defending and advancing the rights of immigrants through direct legal services, systemic advocacy, and community education.
  • Pueblo Sin Fronterasis an organization that provides humanitarian aid and shelter to migrants on their way to the U.S.
  • RAICESis the largest immigration nonprofit in Texas offering free and low-cost legal services to immigrant children and families.
  • Together Risingis another Virginia-based organization that’s helping provide legal assistance for 60 migrant children who were separated from their parents and are currently detained in Arizona.
  • The Urban Justice Center’s Asylum Seeker Advocacy Projectis working to keep families together.
  • Women’s Refugee Commissionadvocates for the rights and protection of women, children, and youth fleeing violence and persecution.
  • Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rightsworks for the rights of children in immigration proceedings.

RI Council for the Humanities Hosts NEA, NEH Leaders for Cultural Conversation; Announces Grants

GCRI Member RI Council for the Humanities hosted A Cultural Conversation with Jane Chu of the National Endowment for the Arts and Karen Kenton of the National Endowment for the the Humanities, as well as all of Rhode Island’s Congressional delegation.  Over 300 community members attended the session, which took place at Trinity Repertory Theater.

RICH also announced a total of $136,429 in new grants to 14 humanities initiatives across the state.  The announcement ceremony, attended by over 50 representatives from civic and cultural organizations, recognized Rhode Island’s strong humanities community and the role the humanities play in civic and community engagement.

Grantees included New Urban Arts, Manton Avenue Project, newportFILM, RISD Museum, South County History Center, Rhode Island Latino Arts, Little Compton Historical Society, Providence Preservation Society and Stages of Freedom for the Public Project category.  In the Documentary film category, grants were awarded to Center for Independent Documentary, Rhode Island PBS and the Rhode Island Historical Society, while Meeting Street and Pushed Learning and Media/New Urban Arts received grants in the K-12 Civic Education category.

More information

Women’s Fund Announces 2018 Grantees, Hosts Gubernatorial Candidate Forum

The Women’s Fund of Rhode Island (WFRI) announced its 2018 grants totaling $50,000 to support gender equality advocacy and female leadership development.  The six recipients are doing impressive work for women and girls in Rhode Island.  One of the grantees, Young Voices, has been providing leadership training to low-income youth of color for ten years. The organization gives kids tools, skills, and experiences that will enhance public speaking, networking, analysis, critical thinking, and leadership.

Another grantee, The Center for Women and Enterprise (CWE) has been working with female entrepreneurs in New England since 1995, preparing them for the business world. It educates, trains, supports, and certifies women starting businesses, giving them the tools necessary to getting their foot in the door. With this approach, CWE levels the playing field and opens doors for women business-owners.

A third grantee is doing significant work for refugees, work that is needed now more than ever. Aline Binyungu and Clement Shabani started Women’s Refugee Care in 2016 to provide services and support to refugees, and their work has expanded to encompass gender equality for women and girls as well. Their proposed project receiving funding from WFRI will provide counseling sessions to educate and support female refugees experiencing unplanned pregnancies.

Grant recipients were Blackstone Valley Prep (summer camp in 2019 to cultivate civic engagement and leadership for 8-11th grade girls); Center for Women and Enterprise (‘Community Classrooms: Spanish Language Entrepreneurship Training’);Planned Parenthood (RI Coalition for Reproductive Freedom);Sojourner House (programming to all 10th grade health classes in Providence Public Schools);Women’s Refugee Care (counseling, contraceptives and education); and Young Voices (#RaiseOurVoices effort to address the root causes of educational disparities).

In addition to announcing a new slate of grants, on June 13, WFRI hosted a Gubernatorial Candidates Forum at the RI Nursing Education Center.  The session was be moderated by Maureen Moakley, political science professor at University of Rhode Island, and was focused on issues facing women and families in Rhode Island.  More info

The Importance of Census 2020 for Funders

The Importance of Census 2020 for Philanthropy and the Communities We Care About

The final segment of the GCRI session on the federal budget last week was focused on the upcoming 2020 Census.  As you know, the decennial census determines the allocation of more than $600 billion in federal assistance to states, localities and families.  Philanthropic funding, while important to Rhode Island communities, is obviously only a small portion of the federal resources that come into the state.  It is important that the Census get an accurate count of Rhode Island communities to ensure that they receive adequate resources from a shrinking pool of federal dollars.

The only test site for the 2020 Census is Providence County (currently underway), although lapses in funding mean that this test is primarily focused on testing the Census technology, and messaging will not be tested.

Historically, the census has missed disproportionate numbers of young children, people of color, and the rural and urban poor.  In the current environment, refugees and immigrants are reluctant to participate, and the proposed addition of a citizenship question will likely increase the difficulty in getting an accurate count of these populations.  In Rhode Island, particularly hard to count communities in the last census included sections of Washington County, Newport County, West Warwick, Providence, East Providence, Central Falls, Pawtucket, Lincoln, North Providence and Woonsocket.

A few other facts about undercounted groups (from Leadership Conference for Civil and Human Rights Census webpage):

Children under age five are the most likely of all age groups to be undercounted.  In 2010, the undercount rate for young children was 4.6% and more than 2.2 million in this age group were not included in the census results.

In 2010, Hispanic children under age five were overlooked at twice the rate of young non-Hispanic White children, and up to 400,000 young Latino children were missed.

The 2010 Census undercounted the African American population by more than 2 percent, and approximately 6.5 percent of young African American children were overlooked, roughly twice the rate for young non-Hispanic white children. Also startling, the net undercount of Black men between the ages of 30-49 was more than 10 percent. Today, more than one in three African Americans live in hard-to-count census tracts.

 Since many of you work hard to support groups and geographic areas that tend to be undercounted, it’s important to work with your community partners in the next two years to ensure that they are counted accurately, and have access to the federal resources they should have access to.

  1. There are two upcoming opportunities to learn more about opportunities for philanthropy to be involved in supporting an accurate count of Rhode Islanders:Next Monday, April 9, from 2:00-3:00pm, our partner in the Forum, Funders’ Committee for Civic Participation (FCCP) will be hosting a webinar on “Participate. Convene. Invest.  A Call to Action for Philanthropy for Census 2020.”   Register
  2. RI Kids Count is co-sponsoring a Census Solutions workshop on April 13 for community organizations to help strategize ways to reach Rhode Island populations that are typically undercounted.  If you are interested in participating or have a community partner who would be a valuable part of the conversation, more information.

Moving forward, there are many resources for funders available:

The Funders Committee for Civic Participation, a sister organization in the Forum, has also initiated a Funders Census Initiative if you would like to keep abreast of Census-related information for funders.

If you are interested in ideas about how funders can be involved in different aspects of supporting the Census, FCCP developed a menu of opportunities.

If you would like more information about the current status of Providence test, preparations for the 2020 Census, the addition of the citizenship question or other general information about the Census, the Forum has complied a number of articles that may be of interest: