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FEBRUARY 22, 2017
President’s Letter
Ellen Wiss Hello friends!

It’s February and you are already making this 15th Anniversary year momentous through WGA! You just surpassed $3 million dollars in endowment funds to secure the mission of WGA in perpetuity thanks to yours and new investments!

Your Grants Decision Team has reviewed the many worthy grant proposals for your new focus area on breaking the cycle of female poverty. With much difficulty, the pool was narrowed, but will have to be narrowed again depending on the funds available to make the grants. Remember, the number of renewals and new member annual investments received by April 30, will go directly toward funding these proposals. Wouldn’t it be tremendous to fund them all? Yes, it’s possible = if we all renew and bring in a friend or two! It’s possible, because of you!

The message of renew and bring in your friends was echoed by WGA founder, Courtenay Wilson, who cheered us on for growth as we kicked off our new strategic planning session this year for WGA. The formula is in our roots. This is history we want to repeat and grow!

Less than $4.10 per day is the annual WGA investor gift that makes so much good possible!

Momentum continues from the WGA research and Institute for Women’s Policy Research report on the economic status of women in Florida by county. It was the topic at a Florida Philanthropic Network conference session we attended this month in St. Petersburg, moderated by our own Paula Liang with our own featured panelist, Pam Paul, who effectively made the case for more women representation in public roles. More women in public roles, in a collective giving circle, and in action together could help change the reality described in the report, like this fact about gender pay inequality: The poverty rate of all working women would fall by 57.3%, if women were paid the same as comparable men...
 
Read The Full Letter
Ellen Wiss, President
(720) 256-6143

eawiss@aol.com
SPOTLIGHT ON GRANTS: Barnabas Center Women's Health Initiative Nassau (WHIN)
Barnabas Center is the place to go in Nassau County when facing a crisis. It is a hub providing comprehensive community assistance that connects individuals and families to services that help them overcome crises and achieve self-sufficiency. In 2015, WGA awarded Barnabas a two-year grant ($110,000) to expand mental health services for women who have gone through a major life event and want support, encouragement and ideas for a healthier life.

Q. What is special about this grant? According to Linda Ellis, Barnabas chief program officer, “The goal of our Women’s Health Initiative Nassau (WHIN) is to help women improve their well-being by focusing on their strengths and resilience...”
 
Barnabas Center Women's Health Initiative Nassau (WHIN) Self Portrait Self-portrait created at WHIN art session
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Introducing DBW 4Sight + Vote
Momentum! The evolving and growing impact of Women's Giving Alliance is exciting and energizing! As we roll into the new year, we have a new leadership team, a new focus area, a national conference to host and the next evolution of our young professional programming to attract members under 40. And the next step requires a membership vote, so read on . . .

Our Delores Barr Weaver Fellows Program has been an unprecedented success, attracting 44 young professional members during its 3 year pilot (now representing more than 10% of total WGA membership). The Fellows are a diverse group of motivated young women who have already helped enhance WGA’s programming and outreach in the community. Based upon their feedback, we have presented a proposal for the next iteration of this program – the Delores Barr Weaver 4Sight Program – to Founders and Past Presidents, Mrs. Weaver, and the Steering Committee. They have approved this approach, and now we need the full membership involved to move forward.

What’s different about the DBW 4Sight membership? Our current Fellows have shared that the three major impediments prohibiting young women from joining WGA are time, awareness and money. As proposed, the DBW 4Sight program reduces the required time commitment from four years to one, mirroring our overall WGA philosophy of flexible volunteer commitment. A marketing campaign aimed specifically at this age segment will increase awareness. And, addressing the final hurdle – reducing the first-year financial investment to $750 – requires a membership vote. More than 30 percent of our WCGN members offer reduced membership investments to attract young members – so we’re right on the national trend!

YOU ARE INVITED to attend a presentation on the proposed new program and its methodology, as well as key learnings from our current Fellows, and including time for questions at a Membership Coffee on Friday, March 3, 2017, at 10:00 am at The Community Foundation. Please join us to learn more more about this important initiative so you may cast an informed vote. Stay tuned for more details in the March eNews – and look for the electronic ballot in April. New program details will be announced at our April 19 Member Forum.
 
Register for this FREE event
Coming Soon: WCGN Leadership Forum
Barnabas Center Women's Health Initiative Nassau (WHIN) Self Portrait Over 160 women from 37 organizations are coming to the Women’s Collective Giving Grant-makers Network (WCGN) Leadership Forum in Atlantic Beach March 12-14. It's not too late to join them! Check out the program and register for the full conference or the a la carte options. Registration ends March 1.
 
Get Details & Register
WCGN Leadership Forum volunteers still needed!
Sunday, March 12
  • Conference set-up from 10:30 am to 1 pm
  • Help with registration from 1-3 pm
  • Welcome conference attendees at the airport (2 people)
  • Contact Kristi Brandon to volunteer
Monday, March 13 Tuesday, March 14
Recent Events
Open Doors Update

Our first education program of the year was a thought-provoking update on Open Doors: A First Responder Network for Commercially Sexually Exploited Children. Open Doors was WGA’s first “boots on the ground” advocacy effort. Dr. Lawanda Ravoira, Ph.D., President and CEO of the DBW Policy Center, shared the magnitude of this problem, progress made and plans for the future. She reminded us that there is no such thing as a “child prostitute.” We also heard the “voice” of a survivor, Alyssa Beck who is an integral part of the First-Responder, Survivor Mentor initiative. Tayloe McDonald highlighted upcoming the Women’s Giving Alliance 2nd Annual Legislative Day on February 22. Twenty-three members and 3 speakers attended the event.

“Anne Frank” Tour with Discussion on Discrimination Based on Disabilities

We held our second education event of the year at the Museum of Science and History. The evening included the exhibit '' Anne Frank : A History for Today » followed by ''Voices of Hope” discussion on discrimination based on disabilities facilitated by Nancy Broner, Executive Director of One Jax and Rebecca Rejtman Bennett, human and civil rights advocate. This exhibit featured art from one of our own, Cindy Edelman and her husband’s collection, as well as the video testimony of many Holocaust survivors who chose Jacksonville as home. What does it mean to be human? Are people any less human if they have disabilities (including mental illness)? What about humans living in poverty or with different beliefs or backgrounds or skin color? When we see unfair treatment or an opportunity to help, do we speak up? What happens when we don’t? These questions and more were raised and discussed. Examples in our history that are just as relevant today show the power and destruction of inaction. How to act? See the person. Listen. Speak up. Collaborate. That’s action!
View Events Calendar
Let’s Grow!
Welcome to the following members who recently joined WGA:
  • Heather Blanton
  • Barbara Barrett
  • Ellen Thrower
  • Nancy Bell
  • Judy Pillans
  • Ann-Marie Knight
  • Mary Ellen Mendes
  • Wanda Lanier
  • Jennifer Rowe
  • Any Wacaster
And thanks to these people who made referrals:
  • Susan Schantz
  • Peggy Schiffers
  • Barbara Drake
  • Nicola Nichol
  • Pat Hayden
  • Julia Taylor
  • Paula Liang
  • Jill Mikes
  • Allison Newberry-Dennis
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