Women's Giving Alliance E-News: March 2015
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In this issue:
Spotlight on Grants: Betty Griffin House
President's Letter
Recent Events: Member Forum, WGA on Twitter
Calendar Reminders
Quick Links
Spotlight on Grants

Betty Griffin House

Betty Griffin House is the only center serving victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse in St. Johns County. The agency is halfway through its two-year $130,000 WGA grant for the Counseling, Advocacy, Recovery, Empowerment (C.A.R.E.) Program.

Q. What’s special about this WGA grant?
The C.A.R.E. Program was designed to provide timely counseling services to over 500 females of all ages from St. Johns County who are survivors of domestic and/or sexual abuse; approximately 200 of these clients are under 18 years of age. This program has a special emphasis on female veterans, as well as spouses of active military personnel and veterans who have suffered domestic violence and/or sexual abuse.

Q. How is this grant impacting clients?
When a woman is in crisis, she needs to get into counseling quickly. The WGA grant has enabled the hiring of additional staff reducing the number of days between crisis and an initial therapy session from the previous wait time of a week or more to an acceptable one to two days. For example, thanks to the WGA grant, the House was able to provide comprehensive services to a client who was sexually assaulted in front of her child. Her husband was arrested but his family was also threatening her and her child. Betty Griffin House moved her into transitional housing and helped her overcome a language barrier, allowing her to get a job. Her child was able to be safe in daycare.

Q. What have been some challenges?
The intake, monitoring, and exit surveys have been subjective with open-ended responses that are difficult to aggregate for trends and outcomes. The staff is working on creating new evaluation tools that can more effectively capture data on practice outcomes and can be incorporated into the statewide reporting system.

Q. What has been the impact of this grant beyond northeast Florida?
Thanks to this grant, Betty Griffin House has been able to work closely with the Florida National Guard and the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence (Tallahassee) to put procedures and protocols in place for each Florida National Guard agency. This allows a more streamlined statewide process for victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse within the Florida National Guard.
President's Letter
The beginning of the year has been a bit of a blur. I knew it would be busy, but I had no idea how much fun it would be! I wanted to share with you some of the goals of the 2015 Leadership Team, informed in part by the results of the recent Member Survey. Here are some highlights:
  • Continue to focus on retaining members and attracting new members, both so we can expand the grants pool, and so we can spread the message of the needs of women and girls in northeast Florida. We are especially interested in attracting members from a variety of neighborhoods, professions, ages and stages, races and ethnicities, so that our membership better reflects our community.
  • Ensure there are engaging, meaningful and fun volunteer opportunities for all members who want to be involved—without ever making those who would prefer just to write a check (I call them our “Happy Check Writers”) feel as if they need to do more.
  • Make our communications and marketing a little bit less about us, and a lot more about the agencies we fund and the great work they do. We want you to truly understand where and how your investment is helping women and girls.
  • Create a framework for evaluating the impact of the entire body of work WGA has done in mental health. The Grants Impact Team is hard at work at this, as well as designing a transparent process for shifting our focus when the time comes.
  • Rethink how baseline research should be conducted going forward, as research-based funding is another hallmark of WGA.
There is a lot to be done, but also a lot of very thoughtful, capable women working on it all.

In the meantime, I hope to see you all at One Spark on April 9th! Come for the day, bring a friend or two, and have your significant other join us for cocktails (see below for details). And, please keep being “Happy Check Writers!”

Hope to see you somewhere soon!

Paula Liang,, 914-673-9007
Recent Events

March 4: Member Forum - The Power of Many

(UNF Herbert University Center)
  • Mental Health First Aid
  • Delores Barr Weaver Fellows
  • Read the Times-Union story here
MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AID: Speaker Katrina Robinson-Wheeler, LMHC, CAP, SAP and clinical director at Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare in Nassau County (a WGA grantee) explains the role of Mental Health First Aid in helping someone with a mental health issue or crisis. Here in Florida, Duval County is one of three districts to be awarded funds to train all teachers and staff in Mental Health First Aid for Youth. To register for the eight-hour class or for more information contact Robinson-Wheeler at 904-225-8280,, or
THE NEXT GENERATION : Delores Barr Weaver Fellows are women under 40 who are from diverse neighborhoods and have a wide variety of occupations and areas of interest.   Fellows are full members of WGA with voting rights and are encouraged to sit on committees. The pilot class is 12 members strong, and the expectation is that WGA will welcome three more classes of equal or greater size.  In the photo, Fellows Coordinator Stephanie Cost introduces the inaugural class at the Member Forum.
Delores Barr Weaver Fellows 2015 Inaugural Class. Front row: Brittany Duke-Anthony, WGA President Paula Liang, Delores Barr Weaver, Samantha Alves Orender; Back row: Yaima Coto, Karen Estella Smith, Sabeen Perwaiz, Heather Houston, Emily O’Leary, Meredith Guess, Angela Grewal, Jennifer Simmons, Melissa Beaudry, Sara Bonderud and DBWF Coordinator Stephanie Cost.
WGA First Vice President Martha Baker, WGA member Jacqueline Brown, and WGA President Paula Liang.
Neighborhood Connector Co-Chairs Margaret Barton and Mary Williams gather at the door to collect 2015 Commitment Forms and checks!
WGA Grants Committee Co-Chair Barb Wenger and North Beaches Connector Kristi Brandon. 

WGA Now on Twitter

Calendar Reminders
We’re happy to have you as a member, regardless of your level of involvement.  We hope you’ll join us at the upcoming events that interest you.  And remember, you are always welcome to bring guests.  All we ask is that you register so we can plan accordingly.

Building a Better Jacksonville

Wednesday, March 18
11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Unity Plaza
220 Riverside Avenue 32202

What should the future look like for Jacksonville? Come hear a panel of JAX2025 community leaders discuss the Jacksonville Community Council, Inc. (JCCI) recommendations to revitalize our community.  Also enjoy a tour of Unity Plaza, the city’s exciting new public gathering place dedicated to strengthening the city as a whole through arts, culture, and engagement.
(Brown bag lunch) Optional: When you RSVP, indicate whether you would like a box lunch from Chef’s Garden @ $15.
Click here to register

WGA Day at One Spark, Plus Strictly Social

Thursday, April 9
During the Day

Join your WGA friends and guests at Jacksonville’s third annual crowdfunding festival.  Experience 555 projects with new ideas in art, education, health and science, music, technology and -- for the first time -- social good.  One Spark takes over 20 square blocks of downtown Jacksonville, including one block curated by WGA! Details to follow about where to park, what to see, and how to meet up with other WGA members during the day.
5-8 pm: WGA's Annual "Strictly Social": Cocktails for members, spouses, & guests in the heart of One Spark.
Jacksonville Public Library
303 North Laura Street 32202

$40; $45 beginning Monday March 30
Guests are welcome!
Click here to register

Connector (Neighborhood) Events

These are slightly more casual events, usually in the evening in someone’s home.  Any WGA member is welcome (as are guests); please register so the local hostess can plan accordingly.

San Marco/San Jose – March 19 (6:00 - 8:00pm)
Jan Gallagher, Director of Counseling, and Gillian Ticehurst, Director of Development, The Women's Center of Jacksonville
Host: Barbara Sharp
RSVP to Connectors for Details: Nancy Felton (; 904-737-8530) & Pam Sorenson (; 904-399-0541)
Marsh Landing – March 19 (6:00 - 8:00pm)
Kiki Karpen, Co-Chair Grants Impact Team
Host: Becky Johnson
RSVP to Connectors for Details: Barbara McTiernan (; 904-834-3358/917-975-1679) & Becky Johnson (; 904-686-1944)
Ortega – April 15 (5:00 - 7:00pm)
Ellen Siler, Chief Executive Officer, Hubbard House
Host: Lisa Page
RSVP to Connector for Details: Neely Towe (; 904-389-7274)

Nassau County - April 17 (12:00 - 1:30pm)
Program: Double Header—Tour Barnabas Center (Wanda Lanier). Learn about the WGA Grants Process (Barb Wenger, WGA Grants Co-Chair).
Host: Barnabas Center, 1303 Jasmine Street, Suite 101, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 (informal lunch provided by Barnabas -- donation basket to defray cost of food)
RSVP to Co-Connectors Kate Ligare (; 904-491-8067) or Christine Meehan (; 904-310-6325)

Deadline to Contribute to the 2015 Grant Pool

Thursday, April 30
You have until April 30, 2015 to contribute your $1,500 to the Grant Pool for 2015.  Please click here for the 2015 WGA Membership Commitment form for your donation.

Quick! Quick! Quick!

In response to the WGA Member Survey, we are happy to provide five quick links at the bottom of this and every newsletter going forward.   Each Quick Link will take you easily to exactly the right location on the WGA website. Try them out! And thanks for your suggestions. Keep them coming.
Join or Renew
Members Directory
For questions or more information, please contact Teri Calinao, Donor Services Manager or (904) 356-4483.
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