Still trying to keep up with those New Year’s resolutions to become more involved in your community? Two of our amazing nonprofits are hosting volunteer opportunities next week: you can help deliver powerful poems from incarcerated youth to their families or learn about Resiliency Theory and positive behavior management techniques. Sounds like no better way to start off the new year than getting out there and volunteering!
Free Minds Book Club & Writing WorkshopFree Minds works to empower incarcerated youth through the transformative power of reading and writing. Our members are often sent off to federal prisons across the country, where they are isolated from their families and friends. They send us poems about their experiences, their emotions, and their hopes for the future. Write Night provides an invaluable connection to the outside world and gives them a chance to express themselves with a caring community that’s you all! It only takes a few minutes to write a response to an inmate’s poem, but it means so much to the poet. Write Night is a casual event and you are invited to drop by or stay the entire time. We are always looking to expand our circle of volunteers so feel free to bring friends! We ask that if you plan to attend, please RSVP through our Facebook page, so we can have an idea of how many people to expect. If you can, please bring a potluck snack to share. Because of the success of Write Night, we request that you bring a donation of forever stamps to help with our mailing this month.
When: Tue Jan 27 2015 (6:00 PM – 8:00 PM)Where: George Washington University, Funger Hall, 2121 I Street NW, Room 108, Washington, DC 20052Fee? noVolunteer Info: Provide feedback on poems from our currently incarcerated members from federal institutions. Also, help create birthday, holiday and encouragement cards. Lastly, you can bring in refreshments to share and share their own poetry.Contact:Seana Drucker, (202) 758-0829 For more information:click here
SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) of Northern VirginiaSCAN will hold a FREE Resiliency Training and Volunteer Workshop on January 29 at First Assembly of God Church in Alexandria. Participants will receive an introduction to Resiliency Theory, overview of positive behavior management techniques, and activity ideas for teaching resiliency skills to the families with whom they work. Guests will also learn more about volunteer opportunities with SCAN’s ABCs of Nurturing Parenting Program. Dinner will be provided; to register please contact Sarah Ford, SCAN Parent Education Intern, at email@example.com or 703-820-9001. Download a flyer for the event here.
When: Thu Jan 29 2015 (6:00 PM – 8:00 PM)Where: First Assembly of God Church, 700 W Braddock Rd, Alexandria, VA 22314Fee? no Contact:Sarah Ford, (703) 820-9001For more information:click here
Catalogue for Philanthropy charities found many creative ways to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a day “ON” to give back to the community and reflect on Dr. King’s important work. In addition to highlighting CFP charities’ volunteer efforts, one of our charities is also celebrating a wonderful partnership this week! See below the video for details.
For Love of Children
Volunteers from Accenture visited FLOC for MLK Day to sort some books, paint walls, put together care packages for and write letters of encouragement to their Postsecondary Scholars, and learn all about FLOC’s?programs.
A Wider Circle
A Wider Circle began their MLK Day with students from The George Washington University and American University, all of whom brought great energy and dedication to helping those they serve. Accenture employees also joined A Wider Circle for their 7th Annual Day of Service, offering their time and talents for a workshop on resume-writing and interview skills. (editors note: #CFPcheers to Accenture employees for attending?not one, but two CFP charities’ events!)
At Horton’s Kids, older youth participants saw “Selma” with U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. After the movie, the youth had the opportunity to take part in a group discussion on larger issues of civil rights and other themes from the film.
“I did not have a rolodex or a big funder, but I did have a deep passion and commitment…and a first-hand experience of how a college degree can truly transform the life of a teen parent and of their child.” – Nicole Lynn Lewis, Generation Hope
In honor of National Mentoring Month, we welcome Nicole Lynn Lewis, Executive Director and Founder of Generation Hope. Generation Hope works to reduce poverty one family at a time by providing direct sponsorships and one-on-one mentoring to teen parents who are attending college in the Washington, D.C. Metro area. Today, Nicole tells us about her personal story that led to the founding of Generation Hope, as well as some of the organization’s most recent accomplishments (new office space!), challenges (ensuring teen parents are part of the college conversation), and needs (volunteer mentors!). She also offers sage advice for others in the nonprofit sector. Welcome, Nicole!
1) What motivated you to begin working with your organization?
I guess the better question would be what motivated me to start Generation Hope as I founded the organization in 2010. Lily Tomlin said, “I always wondered why somebody doesn’t do something about that. Then I realized I was somebody.” That has always reminded me of how this journey began. I was a teen mother. I became pregnant my senior year of high school, and I heard the same message that many young women hear in that situation — “Your life is over.” I was an honor roll student, and I wanted more than ever to go to college. So I did. My daughter (who is now 15), was a little under three months old when I started at the College of William and Mary. I was a young, poor, single mother unlike any other student at the college, and even though there were many sleepless, cold nights with very little in the fridge, I graduated in four years with high honors and bachelor’s degree in English. I moved up to the D.C. area after graduation, started graduate school, got my first job, and it did not take long for me to see that there were so many young parents in our region who were struggling to make it from day to day (D.C. has the number-one teen pregnancy rate in the nation). One of the biggest reasons was a lack of education. I decided that I wanted to become involved with an organization that specifically focused on teen parents and college completion. That’s when I discovered that there were none in the D.C. area and very few across the country. That was my Lily Tomlin moment. I did not have a rolodex or a big funder, but I did have a deep passion and commitment to this issue and a first-hand experience of how a college degree can truly transform the life of a teen parent and of their child. If we want to make a tangible difference in our community, we have to believe in — and invest in — the potential of young parents and their children.
2) What exciting change or innovation is on your mind?
Generation Hope is in the process of wrapping up a three-year strategic planning effort. Mapping out Generation Hope’s trajectory through 2018, this plan calls for robust growth, increasing the number of teen parents whom we support in college to 65 in July 2015 (essentially doubling our numbers) and to 100 by 2018. This bold growth is necessary because the demand is so great. There are thousands of young mothers and fathers in our region who need the mentoring and financial support that our program provides to realize their college dreams. Our support increases the likelihood that D.C. area young parents will earn their degrees and have the means to provide economically stable lives for their children. We are beyond excited about what this means for young parents, their children, and our entire region.
3) Who inspires you (in the philanthropy world or otherwise)? Do you have a hero?
Starting an organization is no easy task. It’s a leap of faith for sure, and anyone who becomes involved in a start up is taking a leap of faith right along with you. Our founding board members believed in me before we even had our 501(c)(3), and that has always been so inspiring. There are two women who are recognized over and over again for their amazing leadership, and they too, believed in me and in Generation Hope early on. Terri Freeman, former President of the Community Foundation of the National Capital Region, and Dr. DeRionne Pollard, President of Montgomery College, joined Generation Hope’s board simply because they knew how critical this work really is. Terri even gave us two cubes in the Community Foundation’s office space to ensure we had a place to work. They — like all of our board members — have such a heart for making a difference. I work with many inspiring people — our board, staff, donors, funders, volunteers, and partners. I am very fortunate.
I have numerous heroes, and our Scholars are definitely in that group. Their stories are heartbreaking. Some have overcome physical and sexual abuse, extreme poverty, and foster care. All were told that their lives were over when they found out that they were going to be parents. Each day I see them working, going to school, and raising their children when others might just give up. They are overcoming tremendous odds and fly in the face of what you think of when you hear “teen parent.” It’s an honor to be a part of their journeys.
4) What was your most interesting recent project/partnership?
We just moved into our first official office space, and that was a really interesting and fun project. It was a staff effort. We thought through the design of the office, ensuring that it reflected the impactful work we do each and every day. So we have beautiful photos of our Scholars and their children on our walls as well as inspirational quotes. We also had to figure out how to get moved in and furnished on a tight budget so there was a lot of blood, sweat, tears, and late nights with IKEA furniture. In December we had a holiday office warming to celebrate the new office and to give out gifts from donors who had adopted our Scholars for the holidays. So many of our Scholars and their children came (we even had an appearance from Santa), and seeing them enjoying the space and having a great time made it officially feel like home.
5) What is the single greatest challenge that your organization faces (besides finances) and how are you dealing with this challenge?
One of the greatest challenges that Generation Hope faces is helping people understand the connection between teen parents educational attainment and the vitality of this region. There is a stigma surrounding teen mothers and fathers, and it often results in them being left out of the college completion conversation. We know that when young people earn a four-year degree, they earn $26,000 more annually than their counterparts with just a high school diploma. Nearly half of D.C.’s homeless youth are young parents under the age of 24 living on the streets with their children. Children of high school, drop-out teen mothers are 10 times more likely to live in poverty. Without educational success, it is extremely difficult to survive, especially with a child. If we care about homelessness, hunger, poverty, and child welfare, we have to care about teen parents’ educational achievement. They can be the next generation of teachers, computer engineers, and nurses if we invest in them. And the great part about investing in young parents is that we’re also investing in their children. The outcomes for the children of teen parents are dismal (more likely to drop out of high school, go to jail, and be teen parents themselves), but when their mother or father earns a college degree, it’s a game changer. The likelihood that they will succeed skyrockets.
6) What advice do you have for other people in your position?
Surround yourself with good people — good at what they do and good hearted. Be genuine. Never lose sight of the mission and keep the people you serve as your number-one priority. Think in the long term (as someone told me “no one else gets paid to be a visionary but you”). Lastly, have fun. Our jobs are not easy and the issues we deal with every day can be draining, but you can still have a good time doing what you love.
7) What’s next/coming up for you?
Next up is recruiting 30-35 individuals to match with Generation Hope’s largest Scholar class to date. We are looking for people (and organizations) who are willing to mentor and financially support 30-35 teen mothers and fathers in college starting in July 2015. It is a rewarding personal connection that has a direct impact on a young parent’s ability to reach their educational goals, provide for their family, and realize their full potential.
Happy New Year! After an incredibly successful 2014 for so many of our charities (and the Catalogue!), we can’t wait to see what’s in store for the year to come. Our first #whatsupwednesday of the year features students sharing their hard-work in front of peers, a charity presenting at one of DC’s largest annual conventions, and corporate partners showing their support. For more details on the charities in the video, read on!
We welcome everyone back to the office this week and send good wishes for 2015. There’s no better way to start off the new year than supporting local nonprofits in the DC Metro Region. Check out what a few of our organizations have going on next week! Continue reading →
Looking for directions on how to give, but don’t have time to read up on our many charities before the 2014 tax season comes to an end? We have you covered!
Consider a “Donate now/Decide later” contribution to the Catalogue. Our “Donate Now/Decide Later” fund allows you to make your tax-deductible contribution to the Catalogue in 2014, and make your nonprofit selections in 2015 after the busy holiday season is over. Just write “DNDL” in the designation box when you are going through the donation process. Then inform us in January who the recipients will be once you’ve had the opportunity to learn about our network of 331 nonprofits at your leisure.
Still looking for more ways to help before the end of 2013? Have you considered making the gift of appreciated stock? Giving appreciated stock can be a tax-wise way to fulfill your charitable wishes, since you could qualify for a tax deduction based on the value of those stocks. Please email our office (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are interested in making a stock donation. We will provide you with a simple letter of authorization to share with your broker. Once you have authorized the transfer of securities, contact us to let us know that the transfer has occurred and to share with us your wishes about the distribution of the liquidated funds.
And please, as your giving for 2014 comes to a close, remember that the Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees for what we do. We rely on the generosity of supporters in our community who believe in our vision. To make a donation to the Catalogue to keep our vision alive, please click here.
From all at the Catalogue for Philanthropy team, best wishes for a happy and healthy holiday season!
Still searching for the perfect gift for that person who seems impossible to buy for? This year, save yourself from a frantic last-minute trip to the mall and consider giving the gift that gives back.
The Catalogue for Philanthropy offers gift e-cards that make the perfect gift for anyone on your list: from that one person who has everything to the budding junior philanthropist in the family. In fact, we can’t think of a time when a Catalogue gift card wouldn’t be a great gift.
The Catalogue for Philanthropy’s e-gift card not only captures the spirit of the holidays through the joy of giving, but it also gives recipients the opportunity to support the causes that mean the most to them — whether in the environment, arts, education or human services in the community where they live and work. And it’s SO easy to give!?Simply click. Give. And inspire.
Sink into the holiday spirit this weekend with two special holiday performances, courtesy of Step Afrika! and Fairfax Choral Society. The entire CFP team wishes everyone a very Happy Holidays and good wishes into the new year. See you all in 2015!
Step Afrika! USA
Join the dynamic artists of Step Afrika!, DJ Frosty the Snowman and their friends from the Arctic Kingdom as they dance, make music and celebrate the spirit of the season! This popular H Street Holiday tradition is now in its 4th year, we are excited to share the joy of the Holidays with you!
When: Mon Dec 22 2014 (7:30 PM) Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center, 1333 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002 Fee? yes $38 Adults, $25 Students and Seniors, $15 Children under 17 Contact:Barrett Kinsella, (202) 399-7993 ext 110 For more information:click here
SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) works to stop the cycle of abuse through its parent education, child advocacy and community outreach programs. Tracy works to enhance how SCAN both engages and empowers community members to take action to stop child abuse. She facilitates SCAN’s Allies in Prevention Coalition — Northern Virginia’s only comprehensive coalition focused on child abuse prevention — as well as SCAN’s partnership with Darkness to Light.
What motivated you to begin working with your organization?
SCAN and I found each other at just the right moment in time. After staying home with my two children for three years, it was time for me to go back to work. Children and children’s issues have always been a passion of mine so when I saw that SCAN was looking for a Public Education Manager, I knew it was the right fit. The position was a compliment to my background in elementary education as well as my recent Master’s Degree in Organizational Psychology. I was given the task of educating those in Northern Virginia about the scope, nature and consequences of child abuse and neglect and the importance of positive, nurturing parenting. A task that I met with open arms and an open mind.
What exciting change or innovation is on your mind?
SCAN is known for its innovation in programming. One program we are planning to launch is Operation Safe Babies – an educational program that would teach new parents about safe sleep, how to soothe a crying baby, and the effects of Shaken Baby Syndrome. In addition to the educational resources, we hope to be able to provide cribs for their new bundles of joy. We are looking forward to working with other social service agencies in Northern Virginia to help reach the families they serve.
Who inspires you (in the philanthropy world or otherwise)? Do you have a hero?
My parents are my biggest heroes and champions. They were young parents (17 and 18 years old) when they had me in 1973. Despite every obstacle they faced and every indicator that said they would not be successful parents or partners, they overcame each one and recently celebrated their 42nd wedding anniversary. They are a true testament to perseverance, hope and love.
What was your most interesting recent project/partnership?
As a part of our Kids Need Connections Child Abuse Prevention Campaign, I developed a series (Children’s Stories that Build Resiliency) of fifteen popular children’s stories and corresponding questions that are engaging, provide a chance for adults to have open discussions with children about their emotions, and also allows adults to model what children can say or do when confronted with situations that test their resiliency. Through this project, we have partnered with the Alexandria City Library to make sure that the titles are available in their libraries and the stories have also been a part of their preschool story hour. I also presented a workshop titled Children’s Stories that Build Resiliency that was presented at the Arlington Out of School Time Conference and I have been invited to present it at the VAECE conference in March in Richmond. I have also written a white paper entitled Building Resilient Children, One Story at a Time that reinforces the research on resiliency and why using children’s stories is a good way to promote resiliency in children.
What is the single greatest challenge that your organization faces (besides finances) and how are you dealing with this challenge?
One of the greatest challenges we face as an organization is opening up the community’s eyes to the fact that child abuse happens everywhere. Child abuse occurs across all boundaries of economic levels, race, ethnic heritage, and religious faith. Too many want to believe that child abuse and neglect are not occurring in their backyard and that it is an issue that does not directly affect them. The financial costs for victims and society are substantial. A recent CDC study, The Economic Burden of Child Maltreatment in the United States and Implications for Prevention,External Web Site Icon found the total lifetime estimated financial costs associated with just one year of confirmed cases of child maltreatment (physical abuse, sexual abuse, psychological abuse and neglect) is approximately $124 billion. ~taken from www.cdc.gov
What advice do you have for other people in your position?
No one can do this work alone. It takes meaningful partnerships and various viewpoints to make change. We should be working together in thoughtful and systematic ways in order to create effective programming that maximizes our limited resources and reaffirms our own beliefs in the human soul.
What’s next/coming up for you?
The next phase of our Kids Need Connections Campaign focuses on how the community can connect with kids. Through our Allies in Prevention Coalition, we will be highlighting the role that parks and recreation departments, faith communities, libraries and law enforcement can play in connecting parents to parents and parents to community resources. And as a result of our annual Advocacy Day, we will be implementing an “Advocacy Year Round” plan that keeps Child Welfare Advocate engaged in advocating for children on an ongoing basis rather than only when the Legislature is in session.