November 18, 2019

Monday, November 18, 2019

Census 2020 Everyone Counts. Everyone Wins!

Census Day is 134 days away and with major federal support at stake for our state (an estimated $1,800 per person per year for ten years) – along with the distribution of political representation at the national, state and local levels – efforts to ensure a complete count of all Michigan residents are in full swing.

Through the Michigan Nonprofits Complete Count Campaign (NPCCC), many CMF members, in particular those serving as regional census hubs, are helping to spread the word about the importance of Census 2020.

Nonprofits that have received grants through NPCCC are doing on-the-ground outreach to educate, engage and empower their communities, especially those in historically undercounted communities, to participate in Census 2020. According to a study by the Urban Institute, populations most at-risk for being undercounted are children under the age of 5 and people of color.

Here’s a round-up of some of the latest census happenings:

Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan (CFNEM) recently awarded $19,500 in grants to help increase the chances of a fair and accurate count of residents in the region. CFNEM is now accepting applications for the second round of Census 2020 grants. Specifically, the foundation is seeking applications from organizations that serve populations in the counties of Alcona, Cheboygan, Crawford, Iosco, Montmorency, Oscoda and Presque Isle. Grant applications are due January 2.

Berrien Community Foundation President Lisa Cripps-Downey recently appeared on WSJM News Talk where she shared information about the critical state and federal funding for communities calculated based on population numbers obtained through the census. She also emphasized that census information is kept strictly confidential.

Kathy Stady, census hub coordinator at the Berrien Community Foundation, reviewed the local push that will be underway from March 20 through April 30 at the Bridgman City Council meeting and the Buchanan City Council meeting. Stady shared that based on the 2010 census response rate, organizers predict an 80.9 percent response rate, leaving 11,291 Berrien County households that will require follow-up to be sure they are counted.  

Buchanan City Manager Bill Marx said the city is on board to support census efforts and shared an initiative involving a local food pantry. The pantry hopes to use grant money to give away ham at the pantry as a way to incentivize clients. Staff will be on hand with tablets and available to help clients complete the census while they are there. “It sounds small,” Marx said, “but for a group identified as hard to count, it could be helpful.”

Mt. Pleasant Area Community Foundation and its partners making up the Great Lakes Bay Regional Census Hub are also working to raise awareness. In a recent Epicenter article, Amanda Schafer, executive director of the Mt. Pleasant Area Community Foundation, shared why the census is important to philanthropy.

“If there’s not enough dollars coming from the federal and state revenues, where are people going to go to make up the difference in the food stamp program? Where are people going to go to make sure that kids have lunches and that babies have formula and diapers?” Schafer said. “They’re going to go to philanthropy, and I’ve got to tell you—there’s not enough. I could fundraise from now until the 2030 census and it wouldn’t be enough to make up that difference.”

Hiring Policies for Census Workers

In addition to getting the word out early, hiring policies for census workers have also made recent news. The Census Bureau is expected to hire nearly half a million temporary workers next spring. Recognizing the importance of speaking the languages of the neighborhoods where workers will be collecting information, the Census Bureau recently confirmed that noncitizens can be hired for their non-English language skills.

Research from past advocacy campaigns has demonstrated that residents are more responsive to answer the door for people from within their community. However, members of the historically undercounted communities are often ineligible to work even temporarily as census enumerators without losing their public assistance (SNAP, TANF, Medicaid, or CHIP). To help recruit census workers from within these historically undercounted communities, the federal government permits states to opt into a waiver process, which Michigan has done. The waiver ensures that additional income from the census work does not cause temporary workers to lose access to federal assistance programs. These waivers encourage members of historically undercounted communities to become census enumerators and thus help ensure a fair and complete count.

Want more?

Connect with the Michigan Nonprofits Complete Count Campaign.

Access NPCCC campaign materials, including graphics for social media, videos and audio files.

Check out upcoming census webinars.



Grand Rapids Community Foundation Ready to "Show Up Authentically, Listen and Learn" in Trust-Building First Steps of New Engagement and Partnerships with Communities of Color 

Grand Rapids Community Foundation (GRCF) was recently selected to be part of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation’s (WKKF) new Catalyzing Community Giving (CCG) cohort. This initiative seeks to amplify locally driven philanthropy by and for communities of color and will provide GRCF $350,000 over three years.

“This grant is a recognition and acknowledgment of the work we have done to partner with communities of color and our commitment to racial, social, and economic justice,” said Jonse Young, GRCF’s director of philanthropic services. “It also identifies that we have work to do so all in our community can thrive—and that communities of color are important leaders in this work.”

A press release from WKKF said the two intended outcomes from this work are (1) an increase in the financial resources going to communities of color from communities of color and (2) an increase in participation by people of color in how those resources are distributed within their community.

“CCG is all about philanthropy that is locally driven,” said Ciciley J. Moore, program officer for WKKF’s Office of the President and the lead for CCG. “When people of color direct how resources are invested, it can transform the lives of children and families in their community. CCG helps democratize the field of philanthropy – shifting who we see as philanthropists and creating a more equitable and just philanthropic practice.”

Catalyzing Community Giving grant recipients focus on the following strategies:

  • Donor Networks: Organizing giving circles and administering donor engagement programs.

  • Research & Outreach: Conducting research and collecting data on local or regional philanthropic trends; developing and sharing tools, curricula, guides and trainings for donors, potential donors, and nonprofits.

  • Building Capacity: Developing the philanthropic capacity of communities of color; developing online platforms and mobile technologies for fundraising; utilizing evaluation technical assistance.

  • Engaging in Partnerships & Network Building: Creating space and time for knowledge sharing and peer learning.

“We know philanthropy is alive and well in communities of color—it just might not be called philanthropy,” said Jenine Torres, development officer at GRCF. “We hope to gain a better understanding of the issues facing our local African American and Latinx communities and what priorities both hope to address with their philanthropy so we can help leverage and make a greater impact.”

Initially, GRCF will use this grant to support listening, community convening and co-creating with community activities. The organization also plans to explore ways to build its internal capacity to support and sustain this work for the long-term. 

“If you want to build relationships with people, it’s important to show up authentically, to learn, listen, and develop trust. For many years, that hasn’t happened. This is a great opportunity to show up differently in community and build relationships that will allow us to be authentic in the work we do,” Young added. “At some point, this will be universal. This will be the philanthropic fabric, not part of it.”  

Launched in 2014, Catalyzing Community Giving supports communities of color in using philanthropy to become agents of their own change and to positively impact the lives of children and families in their communities. Thirty-one other foundations, nonprofits and emerging networks make up the fourth Catalyzing Community Giving cohort, representing a $9.5 million investment by the WKKF over three years.

Want more?

Learn more about WKKF’s Catalyzing Community Giving.



Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2019

Candid and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) recently released their sixth annual report on the state of disaster philanthropy, compiling data from 2017.

The report details the amount of donations given to relief and prevention efforts for natural disasters, man-made accidents, humanitarian emergencies and more from philanthropic organizations, businesses and private donations over the span of one year. This most-recent report showcases 2017 data, as it is the most up-to-date, complete data available.

In addition to the downloadable report, Candid and CDP have made available an interactive dashboard to explore the data, not only from 2017, but from the last five years.

Over $45 billion was given for disaster-related causes in 2017, a 50% increase from 2016.

“In this report, it is compelling to see the increase in giving in response to what we know was a devastating year of disasters,” Regine Webster, vice president CDP, said in a blog post. Webster cited wildfires in California, Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, two major earthquakes in Mexico, famines in northern Nigeria, Somalia and South Sudan as well civil unrest in Syria and Yemen as catalysts for disaster giving in 2017.

Key takeaways from the report include:

  • 59% percent of disaster relief giving went toward response and relief efforts, and 21% going towards reconstruction and recovery efforts.

  • Nearly 64% of all disaster philanthropy given was given in North America as a result of the three major hurricanes in 2017.

  • 49% of all donations funded natural disaster relief, with 19% funding humanitarian aid efforts.

  • Foundations and nonprofits provided $504 million, with corporate giving made up over $275 million of disaster philanthropy and individual donors contributing $16 million.

CMF has posted a collection of curated resources for foundations engaged in disaster philanthropy, available to all members. The collection includes a communications planning tool, a guide for setting up a disaster fund and much more.

Want more?

Explore the CDP interactive data.

Check out CMF’s curated disaster philanthropy resources.


Member Spotlight:

FCA Foundation Invests $1.6 Million To Advance Educational Opportunities For Detroit-Area Students

A news release from the FCA Foundation

On November 14, the FCA Foundation, the charitable arm of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, announced the recipients of its 2019 educational grants (totaling $1,650,000). The grantees, all of whom are focused on improving educational outcomes for Detroit-area students, provide a wide array of in-classroom, after school, summer and weekend programming.

"The FCA Foundation recognizes its responsibility to help build strong and sustainable communities," said Christine Estereicher, director of civic engagement and state affairs for the foundation. "We believe that this goal can only be realized by investing in Detroit's young people, providing them with educational opportunities as well as life skills that will help them grow and thrive for years to come."

Among the 17 academic and nonprofit organizations receiving an FCA Foundation grant, Cranbrook Institute of Science will use its grant to bring a hands-on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) program to K-12 students at Detroit Enterprise Academy, as well as to students in southeast and central Michigan. This programming demonstrates a sustainable model of academic instruction that offers STEM learning and its real-world application and resource efficiency. 

"Cranbrook Institute of Science is committed to transforming students, families and communities through STEM and environmental education programs of the highest quality and impact," said Dr. Michael Stafford, Ph.D., director, Cranbrook Institute of Science. "We are delighted to have the FCA Foundation, an organization as committed and passionate about these issues as we are, as a partner in this important work."

2019 FCA Foundation Grant Recipients

  • Arab American and Chaldean Council - Expansion of after-school enrichment program

  • ACCESS - Expansion of digital inclusion program 

  • City Year - In-school mentoring

  • Communities in Schools - Support to help students stay on track to graduation

  • Cranbrook Institute of Science - STEM education and environmental outreach program

  • Detroit Police Athletic League - Youth athletic, leadership and mentoring programs

  • Engineering Society of Detroit - Girls in Engineering Academy

  • FIRST Championship (Detroit) - Volunteer sponsor

  • FIRST in Michigan - Support for 114 FIRST robotics competition teams in Arizona, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan

  • LA SED - Youth enrichment program with a focus on literacy and math proficiency

  • Math Corps - Academic and mentoring program for Detroit public school students in grades 6-12

  • Michigan College Access Network - College advising support for high school students

  • Rhonda Walker Foundation - RWF Academy after-school program for middle-school girls

  • Ruth Ellis Center Inc. - Expansion of youth leadership program

  • Teach for America - Literacy Teacher Development in eastside Detroit schools

  • Winning Futures - School-based leadership and mentoring with an emphasis on high school graduation and college preparation

  • YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit - Youth development programming in Warren, Trenton, Pontiac and the east side of Detroit


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