The Connecticut Council for Philanthropy works with members promoting effective philanthropy throughout the state, and with our colleagues nationally through the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers, whose network represents more than 5,500 participating organizations and is the largest network in American philanthropy.
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Keep Partisan Politics Out of the Charitable Sector
This week, Connecticut Council for Philanthropy, delivered a clear message to political leaders in Congress and shared it with leaders in the state: "Protect the integrity of America's nonprofit sector by maintaining the current law that keeps politics and campaign contributions out of the work of charities."
The letter, signed by Chairperson Judith Meyers on behalf of the board of directors of the Connecticut Council for Philanthropy (CCP), lays out the critical reasons for preserving the law that prohibits nonprofits from endorsing, opposing or contributing to political candidates.
Known as the "Johnson Amendment" because it was proposed 63 years ago by then-Senate Minority Leader Lyndon B. Johnson, the legislation was passed by a Republican-controlled Congress and signed by President Eisenhower. Today it is almost taken for granted that tax-exempt charities stay clear of partisan politics so they can focus on their programs and services that are designed to help everyone in the community.
The letter summarizes the key reasons to oppose proposals to repeal the Johnson Amendment:
It would erode public trust in charitable organizations to solve community problems.
Existing law already provides appropriate ways to influence public policy.
Repeal will siphon contribution dollars away from community services.
CCP recently signed onto a Community Letter in Support of Nonpartisanship that was signed by 4500+ organizations from around the country, and last month a delegation of CCP members visited Connecticut's lawmakers on Capitol Hill to explain these concerns.
"We want everyone to understand the need to protect our state's nonprofit organizations from being dragged into partisan politics, especially as it could be at the expense of funding support for critical programs and services we all depend on." -- Frances Padilla, CCP board director and President of Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut
Funders to Hear from Thought Leader on Bridging Our Nation’s Racial Divide
The Connecticut Council for Philanthropy (CCP) has engaged Heather McGhee, a thought leader on the national stage, to speak at their May 12 Annual Meeting & Philanthropy Awards Luncheon on how all Americans can work to bridge our nation’s racial divide. The event will be held from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm at the Hartford Marriott Downtown. Heather McGhee is president of Demos, a public policy organization working for an America where we all have an equal say in our democracy and an equal chance in our economy. A recognized thought leader on the national stage, McGhee frequently appears on shows such as Meet the Press, Real Time with Bill Maher, and Hardball with Chris Matthews.
Last year, Heather captured the attention of millions of Americans during an appearance on C-SPAN, when she compassionately and honestly answered a white caller’s question as to how he could become less prejudiced. Since then, she and the caller – a North Carolina man named Garry Civitello – have continued their conversation, through pieces in The New York Times “Sunday Review,” the New Yorker, Upworthy, and on Van Jones’s CNN special, “The Messy Truth.”
Last fall, the CCP Board formed a new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee to develop and promote policies and programs for advancing these important values in Connecticut philanthropy. Support for McGhee’s keynote and CCP’s related work is underwritten in part by Newman’s Own Foundation.
"Heather McGhee brings an important voice to Connecticut on the theme advancing equity and the promise of democracy in these challenging times," said Judith Meyers, CCP's Board chair. "Our organization is moving forward to promote and advance this critical work in the Connecticut philanthropic community."
About CCP’s Annual Meeting and Philanthropy Awards Luncheon
CCP’s Annual Meeting and Philanthropy Awards will bring together 250+ representatives of foundations, corporate philanthropy, community foundations and other philanthropic organizations, as well as nonprofit partners and leaders from across the state. The annual event enables funders to network, learn and celebrate the state’s philanthropic sector. Registration is available here >>
Besides the keynote, CCP’s event will also feature:
- The first public appearance of CCP’s president, Karla Fortunato, who will start her new position on May 1. Read more >>
- A welcome to three newly elected CCP Board Members: Maryam Elahi, president and CEO of The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut; Kelly Giordano, managing director for Newman's Own Foundation; and Judy Rozie-Battle, senior vice president for the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. Read more >>
- The 2017 Philanthropy Awardees: Sheila Perrin, co-founder and board chair of the Perrin Family Foundation, who will receive the John H. Filer Award for creative leadership in philanthropy; Diane Sierpina, director of justice initiatives for The Tow Foundation, who will receive The Martha S. Newman Award for exemplary service to the philanthropic sector. Read more >>
CCP’s Annual Meeting and Philanthropy Awards is made possible with support from Newman’s Own Foundation, Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund, Nellie Mae Education Foundation, The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, Travelers, Webster Bank, Blum Shapiro, Connecticut Health Foundation, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, NewAlliance Foundation and Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation.
The ten Connecticut cities—Bridgeport, Danbury, East Hartford, Hartford, Middletown, New Britain, New Haven, Norwich, Torrington, and Waterbury—were selected by an independent jury to receive $15,000 each as part of Federal Reserve Bank of Boston's Connecticut Working Cities Challenge design grant awards. This grant competition will develop long-term plans for economic resurgence in post-indistrial small cities. Read About the Design Grant Winners >>
Following a six-month design phase, these teams will compete for implementation grants between $300,000 and $500,000 over three years. The cities are focused on increasing job opportunities for various populations (youth, Latino, single-headed households); aligning workforce training with local industry needs; retaining and attracting a younger workforce; and reducing barriers to employment (basic life skills, childcare, and transportation).
Funding for the Working Cities Challenge in Connecticut is provided by the State of Department of Economic & Community Development, The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, Living Cities, NeighborWorks America, Avangrid Foundation, Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation, Eversource and Eversource Foundation, Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Stanley Black & Decker, Travelers and the Travelers Foundation, Webster Bank, Liberty Bank Foundation, Bank of America, Barnes Group Foundation, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation, Charter Communications, Connecticut Community Foundation, The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Community Foundation of Greater New Britain, The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, Ion Bank, Fairfield County's Community Foundation, Hartford HealthCare, Hoffman BMW of Watertown/Hoffman Auto Group, Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford, Main Street Community Foundation, New Canaan Community Foundation, Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation, Thomaston Savings Bank, United Technologies Corporation, and Valley Community Foundation. CCP members are bolded.
Connecticut United Ways are partnering with a nonprofit organization called EARN to bring a matched savings program to ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) households in the state. "Asset limited," is a defining characteristic of ALICE. Thirty-nine percent of Connecticut households lack the liquid assets necessary to survive a financial shock. This vulnerability means that a medical emergency or unexpected car repair has the potential to cripple an ALICE household.
The EARN Starter Savings Program is a six-month matched savings program for people who earn up to 80% of the median household income in their region. Participants agree to save at least $20 per month and in return earn $10 in matched savings. At the end of program, they will have built up at least $180 worth of emergency savings. EARN reports that 80% of graduates from the Starter Savings Program continue to save beyond the six months of the program.
"Connecticut United Ways invested more than $1.5 million in financial stability work that helps families in various ways including free tax preparation, managing their household budgets, building assets and repairing credit," said Richard Porth, President and CEO of United Way of Connecticut. "This new partnership with EARN will help us further deliver on our commitment to support ALICE households." Read more >>
A group of tech industry leaders, academic institutions, non-profits and other organizations are jointly launching a $14 million fund to support the News Integrity Initiative, a global consortium focused on helping people make informed judgments about the news they read and share online. The founding funders are Facebook, the Craig Newmark Philanthropic Fund, the Ford Foundation, the Democracy Fund, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The Tow Foundation, AppNexus, Mozilla and Betaworks. The News Integrity Initiative will be run as an independent project by the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism under the auspices of the School’s Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism.
“By locating the News Integrity Initiative at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, our faculty and students will have a unique opportunity to engage with researchers and technologists, attend events and conduct experiments aimed at building greater trust in our profession,” says CUNY J-School Dean Sarah Bartlett. “It’s hard to think of a more important role for a public graduate school of journalism.” Read more >>
United Way of Greater New Haven has entered a video contest sponsored by A Community Thrives (ACT), part of the USA TODAY NETWORK. Voting and sharing takes place every day through May 12. "Winning the $100,000 prize would be tremendous for the children and families United Way of Greater New Haven serves, and the national exposure will put a deserving positive spotlight on the community." VOTE NOW at uwgnh.org/vote and contribute to United Way without spending a dime. A click a day is all it takes, and together we can make a difference. VOTE TODAY >>
Philanthropy News Links
Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation
- Community Impact: Philanthropic Millennials Using Dollars for Change >>
- Foundation Tops $3M in Spring Grants Cycle >>
Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation
- Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation and Malta House of Care Launch Health Coach Program for Uninsured Hartford Patients >>
- Cigna Honored by National Business Group on Health for Advancing Health Equity and Reducing Disparities >>
- More Than 400 Volunteers "Make Change Happen" at Rawson Elementary School on the 16th Comcast Cares Day >>
The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut
Community Foundation of Greater New Britain
- First Community Foundation Grants of 2017 Total Nearly $100K >>
- Dinner Is Served; Bread for Life Opens >>
Connecticut Community Foundation
- Foundation Awards $375,000 in Grants to Local Community Groups >>
- QU Professor to Study Naugatuck River for Potential Cancer Link >>
Connecticut Health Foundation
- The Health Disparities Institute Receives Grant to Improve Health Insurance Literacy Among Populations of Color >>
Fairfield County's Community Foundation
- Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Fund for Women & Girls Nurtures Seeds of Opportunity at Annual Luncheon >>
Farmington Bank Community Foundation
- Responding to Hunger with Capacity Building; Coalition Initiative Renewed >>
- Foundation Provides $4K Grant to Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation >>
Hartford Foundation for Public Giving
- Move Up! A Partnership for Adult Learning Receives $420,000 Grant from Hartford Foundation for Public Giving >>
- Connecticut Children’s Office for Community Child Health Receives $300K Grant for Program to Support and Strengthen Families >>
- Ruddell Fund Awards 17 Grants to Manchester Organizations >>
- Asylum Hill Family Center Members Share Concerns, Get Informed About Current Immigration Enforcement Activity >>
- Three Hartford Foundation Giving Circles Convene to Discuss the Power of Collective Philanthropy >>
Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation
- New Haven Animal Shelter Scheduled for Renovations thanks to $95K Grant >>
- Foundation Moving to East Main Street in Torrington >>
People's United Community Foundation
The Tow Foundation
United Way of Coastal Fairfield County
Non-Member News Links
Brackets For Good 2017
Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut Foundation
Chelsea Groton Foundation
Connecticut State Office of the Arts
First County Bank
Guilford Savings Bank
United Health Foundation
- Connecticut Targets Opioid Epidemic with $2.35M in Grants to Hartford >>
- Hartford Gets $2.35M To Fight Opioids >>
Grants and RFPs
William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund
- IMMEDIATE SUPPORT: Responsive grants for communities in Connecticut responding to current and emerging threats, trauma and/or harassment related to these manifestations of hate and bias and oppression >>
Perrin Family Foundation
- RAPID RESPONSE SUPPORT: Mini-grants to support and enhance the safety and resilience of communities responding to current, emerging, or heightened threats, harassment and trauma resulting from current events and related to manifestations of oppression in a specific community >>
The Fund for Greater Hartford
- APRIL 28: Letter of Intent deadline: Letters of Intent >>
Connecticut Community Foundation
- APRIL 28: Application deadline: 2017 Sponsorships for Events after June 30 - October 29 >>
The Donaghue Foundation
- MAY 1: Letter of Intent deadline: Greater Value Portfolio for funded research projects for the purpose of creating new approaches to achieving a higher value healthcare system >>
Edward C. and Ann T. Roberts Foundation
- May 2: Application deadline: Excellence in the Arts quarterly grant cycle >>
The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven
- MAY 2-3: Konopacke Fund Matching Donations for Participating Nonprofit Animal Shelters, givegreater.org >>
- Year-round grant opportunities for nonprofit animal shelters in Greater New Haven: The Lillian and Henry Konopacke Fund >>
George H. C. Ensworth Memorial Fund
- MAY 15: Application deadline: Annual grant cycle >>
J. Walton Bissell Foundation
- MAY 31: Application deadline: Grantmaking cycle >>
The Guilford Foundation
- JUNE 1: Application deadline: Quarterly Competitive Grant Cycle >>
- JUNE 15: Nomination deadline: Paul and Joyce Aicher Leadership in Democracy Award ($10K) >>
Branford Community Foundation
- JUNE 20: Application deadline: Quarterly Competitive Grant Cycle >>
Main Street Community Foundation
- JUNE 30: Application deadline: Southington Community Well-Being Grant Initiative >>
Events and Other Opportunities
APRIL 28 - SEPTEMBER 18: 22 Concert Dates in Connecticut and Massachusetts
The sixth annual Farmington Bank Community Concert Series features 20 free performances by Simply Swing, the popular, 10-piece swing orchestra based in Connecticut. This year’s series includes concerts at venues including Blueback Square in West Hartford, Riverfront Recapture’s scenic locations on the banks of the Connecticut River in Hartford and East Hartford, as well as performances in East Longmeadow and West Springfield, Massachusetts. View all concert dates, times and locations >>
MAY 2-3: The Great Give
This series of workshops is specifically designed to help nonprofits maximize their success in The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven's The Great Give, May 2-3, 2017. The Great Give® 2017 is the eighth major community-wide giving event on giveGreater.org® taking place for 36 hours starting 8:00 am on May 2 and ending 8:00 pm on May 3. Between 2010-2016, giveGreater.org® has distributed more than $5 million in grants to nonprofits as a result of direct donations through seven giving events.
MAY 3: 3:30 pm: The Bridgeport Holiday Inn, Bridgeport
The Bridgeport Public Education Fund and Fairfield County's Community Foundation present the Inspiration Awards for Excellence in Education which recognizes ten outstanding educators for their exceptional teaching strategies.
MAY 17: 4:00 pm: Kelly Middle School, New London
The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut's second Thriving Communities Conversation, will tackle youth empowerment. Two more conversations being planned for the fall will focus on women’s rights and environmental preservation. Read a review of the first conversation >>
MAY 17: 9:00 - 11:00 am, Waterbury
Connecticut Community Foundation is hosting an Executive Director Roundtable: The Importance of Advocacy, with Jeff Shaw, public policy director for The Alliance, the state’s largest nonprofit advocacy group, will lead a discussion on the importance of advocacy and the most effective ways in which nonprofits can advocate for their organizations. Recommended for executive directors, the workshop is free but space is limited!
MAY 24: 5:30 pm: Saybrook Point Inn, Saybrook
A key component of The Rockfall Foundation's Soiree is to raise awareness of local, responsible shellfish farming by featuring a fresh oyster raw bar supplied by our partners with the Noank Aquaculture Cooperative. Members of the Cooperative are local shellfish farmers who focus on growing some of the finest oysters in the Northeast. Proceeds will support environmental education programs of the Rockfall Foundation, including the “Greening Kids” grant program. Nurturing future environmental stewards is a priority area for the Rockfall Foundation.
MAY 25: 6:00 - 8:00 pm: The Interlaken, Lakeville
The Foundation for Community Health's annual medical education lecture for health and science professionals will feature a presentation by Dr. Bessel A. van der Kolk, author of the New York Times best-seller: "The Body Keeps the Score: Mind, Brain and Body in the Healing of Trauma." RSVP by May 19 or ASAP as seating is limited >>
JUNE 8: 5:30 - 7:30 pm: Hospital of Central Connecticut, New Britain
The public is invited to attend the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain's Catalyst Fund meeting. Experts in the workforce topic will make a presentation and Fund members will launch the process of crafting a Request for Proposal, which will be made available to programs and agencies interested in applying for the grant. Two more meetings will follow in September and November, with the process resulting in an end-of-year, $10,000 award. A light supper and refreshments will be served. Please RSVP to Kimberly Duncan by June 1 at firstname.lastname@example.org or 860-229-6018, ext. 300.
JUNE 15: 11:00 am - 1:30 pm: Connecticut Convention Center, Hartford
United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut's Women's Leadership Council presents their sixth annual Power of the Purse Luncheon and Silent Auction. The event raises awareness and funding for the family financial stability initiative, which provides lower-income residents living in Hartford with onsite financial coaching and education, including basic banking, budgeting and saving skills, free tax preparation, and access to matching funds to help participants reach their personal financial goals.
The power of good people
Jim Williamson, who as president of the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain for the past 12-plus years led the organization through a transformative period of growth, change and influence, has announced his retirement. The Strategy Group, LLC of Darien has been retained to lead the executive transition process. A formal date of retirement will be determined pending results of the search for his successor. Williamson joined the Foundation in September, 2004 as the Foundation’s second full-time chief executive. During his tenure at the Community Foundation and under the board’s direction, Williamson spearheaded the Foundation’s transition from grantmaker to community leader, building partnerships with other organizations and stakeholders to help identify community challenges and engage in strategies to address them. He successfully managed the Foundation’s choice to adopt early childhood development as a priority cause of the Foundation, managing establishment of the First Years First early childhood development initiative and fund which remains a focus of the Foundation today. Read more >>
Damaris Garcia has been appointed to a two‐year term on the Liberty Bank Foundation Board of Directors. Garcia joined Liberty Bank as vice president and manager of its College Street, New Haven office in 2013. She previously spent 15 years at Citizens Bank, most recently as manager of its New Haven office, which was the largest in the state. “I am very honored to be able to serve as the newest board member of our Liberty Bank Foundation,” said Ms. Garcia.” I look forward to furthering the vision of our foundation for the next two years, as we continue to serve our local communities through our charitable giving.” Read more >>
The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven's Progreso Latino Fund has featured Angel Fernandez-Chavero in their Celebrating Latino Leaders series. Currently acting interim executive director for the City of New Haven's Commission on Equal Opportunities, City of New Haven, Angel has also worked as a senior philanthropic officer at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, where he also served as the staff liaison to the Progreso Latino Fund. Read more @ The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven >>
Newman’s Own has announced that Dr. Lynn Pasquerella has been appointed to the Newman’s Own Advisory Board. Pasquerella is currently President of the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), where she has served since July 2016. The Newman’s Own Advisory Board provides high level advice and assistance on strategic matters to both the Newman’s Own Foundation and the food company, Newman’s Own, Inc.
“We are delighted to have Dr. Pasquerella join the Newman’s Own Advisory Board. She will bring significant experience and sensitivity to the Newman’s Own commitment of contributing 100% of its profits to charitable organizations, a commitment which celebrates its 35th anniversary and surpasses $500 million in total giving in 2017,” said Bob Forrester, President and CEO of Newman’s Own Foundation and Executive Chairman of Newman’s Own, Inc. “Lynn is a distinguished scholar and teacher, whose lifelong commitment to bringing empowerment and opportunity to the least advantaged in our world will make her a valued colleague and advisor.”
Recently Pasquerella spearheaded a program through the AAC&U, launching The Centers for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation, which will have ten campus locations around the country. The Centers will establish goals, share ideas and strategies, and identify specific action steps for pursuing racial healing and systems change. Read more >>
Dolores Raimo has been named to the executive committee of the Women & Girls Fund of the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation. The Fund annually awards grants that serve women and girls in the development of economic self-sufficiency by means of education, financial literacy and social services. For 30 years, Ms. Raimo worked as both an Early Childhood Teacher and a Learning Disabilities Specialist. Read more >>
The national funder group, The Funders' Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities has announced the appointment of Michelle Knapik, president of the Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, to the network’s board of directors. “Michelle has been a highly engaged member of the Funders’ Network for years,” said Ben Starrett, president and CEO of the Funders’ Network. “We are so pleased that she has joined our board of directors where she will play an even more substantial role in guiding the network and its commitment to our core values of equity and inclusion.” The Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation seeks and funds innovative projects that advance solutions to basic and enduring problems, with a focus on learning disabilities, arts and the environment.
About CCP and Connecticut Philanthropy Digest
Connecticut Council for Philanthropy (CCP) is an association of grantmakers committed to promoting and supporting effective philanthropy for the public good.
CCP's members are foundations (private, corporate, community), business and corporate giving programs, bank trusts, donor-advised funds, individual philanthropists, and those serving the philanthropic sector. CCP members granted more than $720 million in 2013 from assets of more than $6.3 billion.
The Connecticut Philanthropy Digest (Digest) is brought to you by the Connecticut Council for Philanthropy. Edited by Laurie Allen, Director of Communications. The Digest is a summary of recent activities by Connecticut foundations and grantmakers, and is compiled and distributed monthly to media outlets, local legislators and grantmakers to raise the profile of philanthropy throughout Connecticut. News about Connecticut funders may be submitted to CCP for consideration. 2017 Publication Dates: May 22; June 19; July 24; August 21; September 18; October 23; November 20; December 18. Submission Deadlines: Close of business one week before the publication date.