October 15, 2018
Written by Rhiannon Rossi, WFC Program Officer
This year the Women’s Foundation of California launched the Community Power Fund. The Community Power Fund builds on the Foundation’s history of supporting community-based organizations working to address the root causes of inequity and advancing solutions led by those most impacted by gender based violence, oppression and discrimination. The Fund supports organizations working in the areas of health, safety, and economic security. We invest in organizations led by cisgender and transgender women, non-binary and genderqueer people—especially leaders of color, low-income folks, immigrants and LGBTQIA+ people.
We value our relationships with our partners and understand the urgency and the work that goes into constantly fighting to undo systemic harm and abuse. From advocating for improved access to child care for all families across the state to building the leadership of system involved and formerly incarcerated women and girls of color, the communities we serve are advocating for gender justice at multiple fronts. Meaning, they simply do not have time to get bogged down with complicated application processes just to secure the funds they need to do the work.
It is for this reason that we have adopted a more simplified application process in order to remove burdensome requirements which opens up more room and space for our partners to focus on building community power. Our new, responsive grantmaking guidelines and practices reflect our trust in community-based leaders as the experts, because we know that people closest to the problems in their communities are best situated to design the solutions. The application process accommodates multiple formats; in addition to the written request, we will accept applications through phone interviews, and in some cases, by video. Reports will also be simplified, and are accepted in multiple formats.
At the Women’s Foundation of California, we understand that if we are to truly advance gender, racial, and economic justice and propel our movements forward, we also have to reflect and re-examine our current practices and assess whether or not we are supporting the communities we serve. We listened and heard the needs of our grant partners and are happy to move into a trust-based approach to grantmaking to reduce the administrative burden on grant partners in applying, receiving and reporting on grant funds.
This summer we awarded 18 grants totaling $440,000 to the following gender justice organizations in California:
ACCESS Women’s Health Justice, Oakland, CA
ACLU of Northern California, San Francisco, CA
ACT for Women and Girls – Visalia, CA
Alliance for Girls – Oakland, CA
Black Women for Wellness – Los Angeles, CA
California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom – Los Angeles, CA
California Latinas for Reproductive Justice – Los Angeles, CA
California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative – Oakland, CA
Center for Reproductive Rights and Justice – Berkeley, CA
Community Water Center – Visalia, CA
Forward Together – Oakland, CA
Khmer Girls in Action – Long Beach, CA
Mixteco / Indígena Community Organizing Project – Oxnard, CA
Mujeras Unidas y Activas – San Francisco, CA
Parent Voices – San Francisco, CA
Women’s Health Specialists – Chico, CA
Young Women’s Freedom Center – San Francisco, CA