Exploring the connectedness of health in our communities and imagining a better future
Mar. 22, 2022 | Issue #22
When we are doing our job well as grantmakers, we are empowering people and communities in California to drive the changes they need to achieve health equity and end domestic violence. Empowerment was on our minds this Women’s History Month, as the Foundation’s Board of Trustees approved a slate of grants totaling over $7.9 million
. We stand alongside the California Domestic Workers Coalition
as its members push for the health and safety protections they need. We are empowering Alianza Metropolitan News
to deliver culturally relevant reporting on domestic violence and paths to prevention. Human Impact Partners
will build powerful community voices into public health efforts to show how economic security and community safety affect health equity. And we are proud to seed the Latino Power Fund
with $1 million. These are just some of the ways we are empowering Californians as we work together to make this the healthiest state. Join us! And please, forward this newsletter to a friend or colleague
who shares our goals.
Director of Communications & Public Affairs
Lifting up women business owners
Throughout Women’s History Month, we see stories highlighting the accomplishments of strong women. A commentary published in USA Today that outlines what has—and has not—changed for working women over the last 30 years made us think about the Foundation’s efforts to strengthen economic security and mobility for Californians.
Author Rhonda Abrams celebrates changing job expectations and an increase in female-owned businesses. One area she says has not changed is access to paid maternity leave, and she points to the gig economy as an area that needs improvement.
As one of our grantee partners has pointed out, domestic and care workers—primarily women of color or immigrants—are the original gig workers. They work unpredictable hours, often encounter unsafe working conditions, lack benefits or paid time off, face high costs of buying their own supplies, and earn low wages.
It’s part of why we invest in care workers and the organizations that serve them. The International Rescue Committee, for example, runs a program in the San Diego area that helps child care providers enhance and grow their businesses. With a focus on immigrant women, the program gives child care business owners like Lina Mousa access to critical tools to build skills like bookkeeping and tracking expenses for taxes. Care providers also learn about child development, so the children and families that use their services benefit, too. In this way, empowering child care providers as entrepreneurs also has a positive ripple effect across a whole community.
Three things that help make a multisector collaboration ready to prevent domestic violence
Meaningful change happens when systems and communities are in active, ongoing dialogue. Multisector collaborations bring public and private organizations together in partnership with community groups, to work collectively on community issues.
Empowering Black and Latinx girls
Empowering Black and Latinx girls has never been more important. Racial disparities in school discipline, gender and racial imbalances in leadership positions, and the societal and systemic structures of inequity create barriers for young girls of color to realize their full potential.
The Girls Leadership report, “Ready to Lead: Leadership Supports and Barriers for Black and Latinx Girls,” focuses on the lived experiences of girls of color, identifying and examining the multiple factors that support and inhibit leadership opportunities for Black and Latinx girls. One finding illuminates that they aspire to be leaders and are more likely to envision themselves as leaders when they have the influence of a mentor who shares their race or ethnicity. This research offers an opportunity to influence policy, culture, and practices to show what can happen when girls of color are empowered to use their voices and lead.
Covering domestic violence in a Russian-speaking immigrant community
Journalist Elena Kuznetsova covers the lives of Russian-speaking religious immigrants in Sacramento, a conservative community with its own customs and culture. Kuznetsova describes for the Center for Health Journalism what she learned covering domestic violence in this community, and her practical advice can help many people who work to prevent domestic violence—not just reporters.
She recommends patience and diligence, gathering facts, and building relationships. She warns that data will be lacking, and it will be hard to find the right story to tell. “Know your community,” she writes, and always think about the impact the work will have on people.
Kuznetsova is a grantee of the Center’s 2021 Impact Fund for Reporting on Domestic Violence, which empowered journalists to skillfully, sensitively bring important community issues to light. The Foundation is proud to support this work.
This reporting can in turn empower survivors of domestic violence and their families to seek help, to heal, and to prevent the cycle from repeating across generations. These stories are an important part of our bold goal to end domestic violence in California.
This month at Blue Shield of California Foundation