July 2, 2018

Monday, July 2, 2018

Resources to Inform Philanthropy’s Responses in the Wake of Immigrant Family Separation and Detention Policy Changes

As of June 22, 2018, the Michigan Department of Civil Rights (MDCR) has stated that approximately 58 children, ranging in age from under 1 year old to 17 years old, are currently housed in Michigan after being separated from their families at the US/Mexico border.

Dr. Agustin Arbulu, executive director, MDCR, said he has been working to ascertain their whereabouts and well-being. “While I have every reason to believe these children are being cared for with integrity and compassion, when the health and well-being of children is at issue, we must have a system in place to confirm and verify their status.”

In April 2018, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a "zero tolerance" policy on undocumented immigrants that included prosecuting parents traveling with their children, as well as people who subsequently attempted to request asylum. President Trump announced in June he would reverse the policy of separating families, and a federal judge ordered a halt to separations and the reunification of families that have been separated.

It is estimated that 2,300 children had been separated before the President’s policy reversal. The number of those children sent to Michigan remains unclear. While MDCR references 58 children, it has also been reported that 81 children separated from their families at the border recently are now in foster care and group placements throughout the state. 

The MDCR has outlined a series of four steps they say, "must be implemented as soon as possible to ensure that while these children reside in Michigan, their human and civil rights under law are being protected.”

  • Immediately re-establish contact between parents and children.

  • Determine each child’s current health status.

  • Provide all children with access to effective communication.

  • Unite parents and children.

Governor Rick Snyder has remarked that there is little the state can do to help because foster agencies contract directly with the federal government.

One such agency is Grand Rapids-based Bethany Christian Services. Samaritas, a faith-based nonprofit with programs in numerous Michigan cities, has reportedly submitted two proposals with the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement to reinstate a foster care program it ended in 2015 in order to take care of immigrant children separated from their parents.

Michelle Haskell, outreach team leader, Samaritas, told local media that typically, immigrant children who come to Michigan on their own stay in foster care for about 45 days, with the goal of reuniting them with family members already living in the U.S. and said that is the goal in this case, as well, though these cases could be different because the parents may be facing prosecution.

For CMF members interested in responding to the issue, a new resource from Urban Institute provides a fresh take on “rapid response philanthropy” - which co-authors Keely Hanson and Joi James explain may not come naturally for foundations that have strict due diligence processes and time-consuming policies for reviewing and approving requests. “They also might only offer restricted grants that limit what grantees can and can’t do with the funds they receive.”

They suggest that community foundations are well suited to receive large influxes of capital and then distribute this capital to diverse organizations responding to crises on the ground “to quickly support various organizations that can help these families in a rapidly shifting crisis with complex and urgent needs.”

Urban Institute has identified four key recommendations for funders on how to structure rapid response models:

  • Promote access to less restrictive grants with open applications.

  • Leverage collaboratives.

  • Partner with experienced funder networks and institutions already connected with organizers on the ground.

  • Don’t forget about the long term.

A new set of resources from Boston-based Associated Grant Makers has been developed specifically in response to this immigration issue. Funders looking to support the families can find links to organizations addressing both humanitarian and legal aspects of the effort.

CMF members have been granted access to view a related webinar recently led by Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR) in partnership with the Council on Foundations - “Where Are the Children? Family Separation Becomes U.S. Immigration Enforcement Policy.” Complete the webinar access form to view the session. 

More than 130 philanthropic institutions from across the country have signed onto a joint GCIR statement in support of children and families seeking refuge in the US. The Kresge Foundation and The W.K. Kellogg Foundation are among those who have signed the statement.

Want more?

Read the joint Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR) statement.

Access the new Urban Institute resource on “rapid response philanthropy.”

Visit the resources from Associated Grant Makers.




2018 Youth Conference Welcomes 300+ for 26th Annual Event

The Youth Grantmakers Summer Leadership Conference has wrapped up, and we’re getting a look at the complete youth advisory council/committee (YAC) experience through a newly released conference wrap-up video, a photo album posted on Facebook and more.

What’s a YAC? Community foundations’ youth advisory councils/committees (YACs) are comprised of high school age grantmakers who work passionately on grantmaking that impacts their communities.

YAC history dates back to the Kellogg Youth Challenge grant, managed by CMF, that led to 84 endowed youth funds overseen by youth being established at every community foundation and affiliate across the state. The grant launched the Michigan Community Foundations’ Youth Project (MCFYP), creating the first YACs. In 1992, the first youth conference was held.

Now, 26 years later, it’s still running strong. The 2018 event welcomed over 300 youth, youth advisory council (YAC) advisors and speakers to Central Michigan University. Guests from Indiana, South Carolina and China were also in attendance to learn about youth philanthropy.

The conference theme was “Ignite: Fuel Action. Spark Change.” - a concept inspired by the MCFYP Committee’s goal to empower active, diverse voices. After months of planning and preparation led by MCFYP Committee members supported by CMF staff, the conference youth participants gathered from June 22 through June 24 for breakout sessions, team building activities and training. In addition to leadership skill building, participants discussed topics such as defining success, inspiring change, understanding mental health challenges, supporting diversity and equity, exploring personal passions, supporting philanthropy in the local community and motivation in grantmaking.

“Open Space” is a unique conference component, creating opportunities for participants to join conversations without the structure of a specific topic, but rather an opportunity to talk openly with peers about any issue of interest. “I absolutely loved open space,” one YACer shared in the post-event evaluation. “It was really cool to be able to talk about issues and life experiences in a safe place.”

Committee members also highlighted the performance by spoken word duo “Kinetic Affect” as a conference favorite. Kirk Latimer and Gabriel Giron shared their unique and difficult life experiences and motivated the youth attendees with inspiring messages about our common humanity and capacity to overcome challenges.

The conference also included the presentation of awards to three YACs for their work in Michigan philanthropy:

  • Battle Creek Community Foundation for community service project of the year.

  • Hillsdale County Community Foundation Youth for grant of the year.

  • Sanilac County Community Foundation YAC for fundraiser of the year.

In addition, the MCFYP Committee presented CMF president and CEO Rob Collier with a resolution announcing him as the first recipient of a new award named in his honor - The Robert S. Collier Passion in Philanthropy Award. The award recognizes an individual dedicated to youth philanthropy and community engagement.

Natalie Green, a third-year MCFYPer who helped present the award, shared: "I still remember meeting Rob my first year on the MCFYP Committee. He was so passionate about youth philanthropy and over time I realized how true that really was. He has not only inspired me personally, but he has made an impact on so many young people at the summer youth philanthropy conference. His contribution to philanthropy is unmatched and will now be permanently recognized at our conference."

The MCFYP Committee is currently accepting applications for committee membership. Applications can be accessed on the CMF website and are due July 31.

Want more?

Watch the video roundup of the 2018 Youth Grantmakers Summer Leadership Conference.

Check out the conference photo album.



Member Spotlight: Quicken Loans Partners with Nonprofit to Fight Veteran Homelessness

Content excerpted and adapted from articles in Crain’s Detroit Business (full article) and The Detroit News (full article).

Quicken Loans Inc., a CMF member, has announced a new long-term partnership with the nonprofit organization Community Solutions to end veteran homelessness across the country, starting in Detroit.

In addition to providing funding, Quicken Loans has committed expertise in data, analytics, marketing and communications through skilled employee volunteerism to enhance and support the efforts of Community Solutions in about 60 U.S. cities.

As reported, Community Solutions has been working with the Detroit Continuum of Care and its associated agencies to develop a systemic approach to getting people into permanent supportive housing and providing them with the wraparound mental health, job training or other services they might need to keep them off the streets.

"To this point our involvement has been in helping the community form a team, collecting data in more actionable ways and training them in quality improvement and human-centered design, all the problem-solving skills a team needs to be able to apply" to end homelessness, Rosanne Haggerty, president, Community Solutions, told Crain’s.

Community Solutions has been recognized by the White House and the United Nations, among others, for its approaches to ending homelessness; communities participating in their model have found homes for more than 90,000 people over the past three years.

"The thought was once we got rolling and started to see progress with veterans, you can apply what you've learned and help solve the entire homeless population issue," Jay Farner, CEO, Quicken Loans, shared.

“Ultimately, ending homelessness - period - is something that can be accomplished, and I think that is what everyone here is focused on," Farner told The Detroit News. "We have a team of 17,000 people who are very excited to get going here."

“We see Detroit as a real proof point to the nation on how to execute this collaboration," Haggerty said. "It's a highly accountable strategy that involves the whole community in getting to this result."

Want more?

Read the full story on Crain’s.

Read the full story on The Detroit News.

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