Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. – Margaret Mead
A group of thoughtful, committed women has been changing our community for the better for the past 17 years, and the members of the San Diego Women’s Foundation (SDWF) continued our tradition of effective, significant philanthropy by awarding new funding and announcing the focus of our upcoming grants cycle.
At our 17th Annual Grants Celebration on June 1, we celebrated the impact of $201,000 in new grant funding to five community partners working to combat youth homelessness across the region.
[pullquote]Homelessness is a major issue in San Diego County, and the statistics and stories around youth homelessness are truly staggering[/pullquote]
Homelessness is a major issue in San Diego County, and the statistics and stories around youth homelessness are truly staggering. Per the 2017 point-in-time count, youth homelessness is up 39% since just last year. Despite the unique challenges that this population faces, homeless youth aged roughly 18-24 don’t qualify for many existing programs.
All too often, they fall through the cracks.
Our members saw this data and determined that we could make a difference in the lives of young people during this pivotal transition period. SDWF’s grantmaking process is completely driven by the expertise and manpower of our talented and dedicated members.
After thorough vetting, SDWF members voted to award five grants to support effective, sustainable programs that will impact the lives of young people for years to come:
Just in Time for Foster Youth
Basic Needs/My First Home – $25,000
Works to keep transition-age foster youth from becoming homeless by providing guidance and resources to support safe, stable housing.
Foster Youth Self-Sufficiency – Addressing Risk Factors for Homelessness – $41,769
Assists foster youth in achieving and maintaining self-sufficiency by offering one-on-one individualized transition and housing plans through Youth2Youth Advocates.
San Diego LGBT Community Center
Youth Services – $40,000
Provides mental health and case management services to meet the unique needs of at-risk and homeless LGBT and HIV-positive youth.
Homeless Youth Legal Advocacy Project – $50,000
Offers direct attorney representation and emotional support for homeless youth dealing with criminal defense and family law legal issues.
Voices for Children
Transitional-Age Teens and Homelessness Prevention Program – $45,000
Prepares at-risk foster teens for a successful adult life outside of the foster care system through the caring advocacy of CASA volunteers.
SDWF has also just released grant guidelines for our 2018 funding cycle, which will focus on enrichment programs with behavioral health outcomes. More information is available here, and we will hold a Grantseeker’s Forum on August 2 for prospective applicants to get more information.
The greater our numbers, the greater our impact in the community – that’s the nature of our collective work.
About Katie Sawyer
Katie oversees day-to-day operations and strategic direction of the San Diego Women’s Foundation (SDWF), ensuring that programs and services delivered are consistent with the organization’s mission to engage women in significant philanthropy. Katie works closely with SDWF board of directors, members, community partners and staff to guide an effective grantmaking process and to provide programming that helps members become more savvy, strategic philanthropists.