WGC was represented by WGC Chair Barb Van Winkle and WGC Executive Director Buffy Beaudoin-Schwartz at the Catalist Women PowerUP! Conference, February 23-25 in Seattle, that brought together women's giving circles from all over the country. We met with old friends, made new ones, and spent time with our friends and colleagues from the Baltimore Women's Giving Circle, Anne Arundel Women Giving Together, and Giving Circle of Hope in Northern, VA. There was lots of sharing and learning among hundreds of women doing similar work to us.
The overarching theme of the conference was about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. There were many great speakers, including a welcoming from Melinda Gates, and some great break-out sessions. Two women in particular, provided some important information for us: Tricia Raikes, Co-founder of the Raikes Foundation who wrote this great Op Ed, Diversity Will Make Women’s Philanthropy More Impactful, in the Seattle Times and who discussed "Facing Our Blind Spots: How Women Can Change Philanthropy," and Ijeoma Oluo, who wrote the book “So You Want to Talk About Race.”
WGC is a member of Catalist, which supports the creation, development, and expansion of women's collective giving nationwide to build women's leadership and amplify the power of giving together.
The Dear Mama: A Black Maternal Health Art Exhibition is an artistic representation of pregnancy and motherhood through the eyes of emerging females of color. The aim of this exhibition is to create for the viewer emotional resonance as well as an understanding of health disparities impacting women of color.
Through visual 2D and 3D art, Dear Mama is designed to bring attention to issues impacting Black motherhood including alarmingly high rates of maternal and infant mortality and pregnancy-related complications. This is a group thematic exhibition to display work in a variety of mediums with representation of pregnancy and motherhood as seen through the eyes of emerging artists of African descent. The exhibition will be brought to life with a reception to include poetry and essay readings, songs and performance art.
Please Join the WGC at the Opening Reception on Saturday, April 18, 2:00 - 4:00 pm. You can RSVP here.
About the Organizers:
The exhibition is a passion project launched by two former law school classmates and local artists, Kamilah House and Faye McCray. The women are mothers whose own struggles led them to create this exhibition to honor women who have lost their lives or bear deep scars due to pregnancy-related complications.
The aim of this exhibition is to create for the viewer emotional resonance as well as understanding of the health disparities impacting women of color. Such disparities include:
Women's Giving Circle of Howard County Receives $10,000 to Support Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Efforts
February 26, 2020 - The Women's Giving Circle of Howard County has received $10,000 from the Horizon Foundation to help leverage our new initiative to focus on diversity, equity and inclusion for women in Howard County.
This grant is building upon funding the WGC received last year from the National Giving Circle Infrastructure Initiative to support efforts to undertake foundational internal work to operationalize our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
This work is part of the WGC’s new IMPACT 2024 Campaign. “We are building on our core values to enhance our mission by implementing a diversity, equity and inclusion lens to and through our work - values that have always been important to us and that we are now prioritizing” said WGC Chair Barb Van Winkle.
The WGC, through the Community Foundation of Howard County, is among the grantees that received a community opportunity grant to support local nonprofits in carrying out their missions.
“We are proud to work in partnership with the Women’s Giving Circle to help make Howard County a place where everyone has an opportunity to thrive” said Nikki Highsmith Vernick, president and CEO of the Horizon Foundation.
The Horizon Foundation awarded $1.87 million in grants to 79 organizations and members of the community in 2019 as part of its mission to improve health and wellness for people who live or work in Howard County, MD.
“Having an investment of support and financial resources from the Horizon Foundation will be an invaluable catalyst for our efforts to undertake foundational internal work that operationalizes our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion” said WGC DEI Committee Co-Chairs Hina Naseem and Judy Smith. "We are looking forward to strengthening the Women's Giving Circle for the future through this important work."
Contact WGC Executive Director Buffy Beaudoin-Schwartz with any questions: email@example.com
February 20, 2020
Many thanks to everyone who took action today and donated to help a woman in need right here in our community.
We asked, and our network of women philanthropists responded - and in less than an hour we collectively raised $1,000 - thank you! You can find details of the request below.
The WGC Emergency Response Network was created to provide an opportunity for WGC donors to help women in need. When our nonprofit partners are working with a woman with an immediate need, they submit a request to the WGC.
Emergency Response Network Requests:
Thank you for your support of women and girls in our community through the WGC's Emergency Response Network (ERN). We are making a bigger difference together than we might otherwise be able to alone - the reason for the success of our giving circle!
If you have any questions about the WGC or our Emergency Response Network, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
FEBRUARY 20, EMERGENCY RESPONSE NETWORK REQUEST - THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Our partners at HopeWorks requested $1,000 to help a woman in need:
Zoey* (name changed for confidentiality purposes) is a mother in her 30's with a 3-year old daughter. Zoey and her daughter came to HopeWorks in late 2019 after calling the hotline seeking safety from her emotionally and financially-abusive intimate partner. Zoey’s abuser had also physically harmed their daughter.
Zoey was an undocumented immigrant upon entering HopeWorks’ Safe House and her abuser utilized various tactics to prevent her from obtaining the documentation needed to become a legal immigrant. Zoey proactively met with her Case Manager at Safe House and immediately gathered and utilized the resources available to her. She worked tirelessly to get benefits for her daughter, ensure both of them had healthcare, and acquire necessary legal assistance. Zoey acquired pro-bono lawyers for her protective order, divorce/custody, and immigration cases, and they have remained supportive as her abuser proves elusive and refuses to comply with terms agreed upon in court.
Zoey was also connected with HopeWorks’ counseling department and continues to regularly access those services. Zoey stayed her full 3-months at Safe House before moving to HopeWorks’ 1-year transitional program. Zoey does not have her own transportation but continues to make it to the Baltimore area to meet with her lawyers and complete the necessary paperwork and processes as quickly as possible. She is finally able to submit her I-485 application as a VAWA self-petitioner (Violence Against Women Act), but needs help in covering the legal fees associated with the application for protection. Zoey is also hoping to enroll her daughter in HeadStart and looks forward to employment as soon as she secures her work permit.
Funds from the Women’s Giving Circle will be used to help Zoey obtain legal immigration protection as a result of being a victim of domestic violence and to get her work permit. On behalf of our partners at HopeWorks we are hoping to raise $1,000 to help this woman.
The WGC's Young Women's Giving Circle (YWGC) is continuing to collect feminine products to provide to women and girls in need in Howard County.
The Feminine Product Drive started a few weeks ago and collection boxes around the county are already stuffed. And, the YWGC has already raised over $500 to purchase products as well. The Feminine Product Drive and monetary donation collection runs through March 2020.
The YWGC has chosen to focus on this because it is a need that is easily and often overlooked.
Did you know ...
Sponsored by the Women's Giving Circle of Howard County, YWGC is comprised of girls in 7th - 12th grade who share the same passion: helping women and girls in need. Members of the YWGC raise money and make grants to nonprofit organizations in Howard County whose missions support women and girls.
“We are so proud of these young philanthropists who are committing themselves to learn more about the community and raising money to fund programs that are meaningful to them” said Barb Van Winkle, WGC Advisory Board Chair.
Please help spread the word! You can follow the Collection drive Instagram page @YWGCdrive, and spread the word to friends. We look forward to the collective impact we will make together in Howard County, and specifically in the lives of hundreds of women and girls.
Please continue to donate feminine hygiene products today or give today - and, please help to spread the word - thank you!
Contact YWGC Co-Chairs Lee Draminski and April Force Pardoe with any questions at: email@example.com
The Women’s Giving Circle is building a community of philanthropists and creating a permanent legacy to address the needs of women and girls in Howard County. The WGC is a fund of the Community Foundation of Howard County.
We bring women together to learn about issues impacting women and girls in our community, and pool our dollars to fund programs that address those issues so we can have a greater impact together than we might otherwise have alone.
We fund programs that benefit women and girls because nonprofits and programs that focus on women and girls are traditionally underfunded. And, as far as our support for girls, we know that young girls benefit from programs specially designed to meet their needs.
We’ve been part of the Howard County community for 19 years, have raised over $1 million to support our efforts from over 1,000 donors, and have given over $500,000 through over 100 grants to nonprofits that support women and girls in our community. In 2019 we gave over $55,000 in grants to our nonprofit partners to empower women and girls.
And we’ve done all this together – as a giving circle. A giving circle is formed when individuals come together and pool their dollars, decide together where to give the money, and learn together about their community and philanthropy. There are thousands of giving circles across the country that have given millions of dollars collectively to have an impact on a wide variety of issues. We are so proud to be an early participant in this growing trend of collective giving.
We had a fantastic Happy Hour tonight where we discussed our grants focused on girls in Howard County.
Thank you to all who joined us and to our partners at Leadership Howard County for hosting us!
#WGCHappyHour #Philanthropy #GivingCircles
It's #GalentinesDay on Thursday, February 13 - a fun holiday to celebrate female friendship! Research from the Women's Philanthropy Institute shows that 70% of giving circles are majority women - how about making a difference through your philanthropy by honoring someone special with a gift to the Women's Giving Circle this #GalentinesDay?
Giving a gift that supports women and girls is a way to celebrate and honor the women and girls in your life while making a lasting impact for women and girls in Howard County for the future. Learn more here and/or give below - thank you!