Member eBrief - AUGUST 2020

Monday, August 3, 2020

Dear CCP Members,

After four months of working with you and other leaders to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, CCP is taking some time to plan thoughtfully for the work ahead. In addition to shifting our focus from emergency response to planning for medium- and long-term response and recovery, we are also planning to roll out some new member learning opportunities.

Our most recent Friday Member Check-In Call focused on how we move forward together. We appreciated your participation and input in this conversation and others, and are incorporating it into CCP’s future program offerings and communications. We look forward to sharing more information soon about our continued response to this crisis. In the meantime, the special section below serves as this week’s installment of CCP’s weekly Top Takeaways for Philanthropy in Connecticut, focused primarily on key policy updates and new information about the pandemic’s impact on the state budget.

A key element of CCP's response to the COVID-19 pandemic is providing data, analysis, and resources focused on the deep inequities experienced by Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and other communities of color. When nationwide and state protests calling for racial equity and justice began, CCP addressed the topic head-on with a June 12 Member Check-In Call focused on how philanthropy can advance racial equity. We know that continued engagement on these topics is of high interest to you and your colleagues. So we are planning to incorporate a number of member opportunities focused on advancing racial equity into our program calendar. We’ll be sharing more details with you about those plans soon.

If you have any questions, or have suggestions about CCP's plans moving forward, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.

I hope that you are well, and able to enjoy the sunny, summer weather!

With best regards,

Karla Fortunato
CCP President     

The power of good networks . . . CCP Events >>

The power of good information . . . CCP Updates >>

The power of good leadership . . . Top Takeaways for Philanthropy in Connecticut - Policy Update >>

The power of good work . . . Member News >>

The power of good ideas . . . Resources >>

The power of good people . . . Colleague news >>        

The power of good connections . . .  Jobs Opportunities >>    

   The power of good networks . . . CCP Events

CCP continues to support networking, information sharing, and collaboration through virtual discussions and programs.

Communications Network Meeting

TUESDAY, AUGUST 11: 9:30 - 11:00 AM: Virtual Zoom Meeting

Register Now

Join colleagues to explore tools foundation and grantmaking communications professionals can use to advance racial equity and justice, including further exploration of concepts like asset-based language in communications, respecting the agency of the communities and people we serve, and challenging traditional philanthropic power dynamics. Our virtual discussion will be guided by Communication Network leader Mercedes MacAlpine, Perrin Foundation. We will continue to explore best practices and provide time for attendees to connect and share their own experiences with this work. To start our conversation, Chiara Wegener, Nellie Mae Foundation, will give an overview of the foundation’s ongoing work to incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion into their communications and strategies. Learn more and register >>   

Stay Connected With Your Colleagues

In addition to regular CCP Member Check-in calls, CCP has three ways for you to stay connected with your CCP colleagues during these times of physical distancing.

  The power of good information . . . CCP Updates 

Please Share Your COVID-19 Response Grants Data

CCP is compiling grants data from Connecticut funders. Connecticut grantmakers have been making significant grants in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we’re eager to collect, analyze, and share the incredible response of the philanthropic community. Help in this important effort by sharing a quick spreadsheet with response grant information. We welcome grant updates if you have already submitted data. Please send grants information to Karla Fortunato.   

In Case You Missed It

Did you miss one of our CCP Member Check-in Calls or Weekly Updates emails? The CCP website provides members access to recordings, materials, and links from past Check-In Calls and Weekly Updates with Top Takeaways for Philanthropy. Each resource is arranged by date with a short description of the content for easy access. These resources are for members only, so be sure to log in to your CCP web account.

CCP Seeks a New Membership Coordinator

This is an exciting moment for the Connecticut Council for Philanthropy as it prepares to launch a new strategic plan. The Membership Coordinator will have a key role in implementing this new plan, including rethinking some of the organization’s work in service of new goals and strategies. This is a reimagined position and an excellent opportunity for someone who enjoys building relationships, connecting people, and supporting learning and collaboration. Read more >>   

Partners for Places Funding Opportunity

The Funders Network (TFN), in partnership with the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), has announced Round 17 of the Partners for Places grant program. Partners for Places aims to enhance local capacity to build equitable and sustainable communities in the United States and Canada. The fund does this by requiring local government and local foundation partnerships, and by pairing national and local philanthropic funding sources. These one-to-one matching awards support the planning and implementation of urban sustainability and green stormwater infrastructure projects. The Partners for Places 2018-2023 strategy leads with racial equity and a sharper focus on how best to advance equitable and sustainable communities. Starting in Round 17, the primary partners also include local frontline community-led groups. This collaborative governance model is intended to more deeply embed the values and practice of racial equity into local community decision-making processes. Last year Bridgeport (Jeniam Foundation and Long Island Sound Funders Collaborative), Hartford (Hartford Foundation for Public Giving), and New Haven (The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and The Watershed Fund) received Partners for Places grants (matching grants in parenthesis.) The deadline for the General Grant and Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) Grant proposals is September 18, 2020. The Round 17 Informational Webinar is on August 12 at 3:00 PM. Read more >>    

  The power of good leadership . . . Top Takeaways for Philanthropy in Connecticut and Policy Update


  • CT Special Legislative Session Update. The CT Special Legislative Session started on July 21 with four items on the docket and legislation on all four items passed in both the House and Senate by the closing of the session on Wednesday, July 29. 

HB 6002 - An Act Concerning Absentee Voting and Reporting of Results at the 2020 State Election and Election Day Registration allows all registered voters to vote by absentee ballot due to COVID-19 in the November 3 general election.

HB 6003 - An Act Concerning Diabetes and High Deductible Health Plans caps the cost of insulin and diabetes treatments.

HB 6004 - An Act Concerning Police Accountability is a comprehensive police accountability bill focused on training and oversight. 

HB 6001 - An Act Concerning Telehealth extends broader telehealth services in Connecticut through next winter.

  • Fall Special Sessions Planned. A Special Legislative Session is planned for early September to address policy changes Governor Lamont made during the COVID-19 Civil Preparedness and Public Health Emergencies. A budget-focused special session may take place in the late fall.

  • CT Fiscal Update. New budget information shows that Connecticut’s state coffers have grown by hundreds of millions of dollars since March, despite earlier warnings of a potential $1 billion deficit. Experts point to early arrival of federal Medicaid payments and higher than expected tax revenues, coupled with state spending that is hundreds of millions of dollars less than originally planned for this fiscal year. Legislators are asking for more details on how the state reduced spending by more than $300 million over the savings goal for the fiscal year, and pressing to find out if the state can and should be spending more on social services in light of the ongoing pandemic and economic crisis.

    A recent national report shows that CT mortgage delinquency rates have grown from 3.78% to over 10% in some parts of the state since the pandemic began. CT’s delinquency rates are among the highest in the nation. Though the long-term effects remain uncertain, analysts point to the 2009 economic crisis, when rising mortgage foreclosures destabilized CT’s housing market and negatively impacted municipal budgets and services.

  • Governor Strengthens Workers’ Compensation. Governor Lamont signed an executive order strengthening the ability of essential workers who contracted COVID-19 to receive workers’ compensation benefits. The order creates a presumption that essential workers who tested positive for COVID-19 between early March and late May contracted the virus on the job and are therefore eligible to claim workers’ compensation benefits. Connecticut is one of only a few states extending workers’ compensation benefits to include COVID-19, and extending those benefits to essential workers beyond health care and first responders.

  • State Creates New Workforce Development Unit. The Administration is creating a new state office to develop workforce policy and coordinate the state’s workforce ecosystem around a common strategy and set of goals. Housed within the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), this new office will collaborate with the commissioners of DECD and the Department of Labor to directly advise the governor and other state entities on various workforce strategies and initiatives. Dr. Kelli Vallieres, the vice-chair of the Governor’s Workforce Council, will serve as executive director for the Workforce Development Unit. Read more >>

  • Three Foundations Join Coalition for Land Use Reform.  The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, and Universal Health Care Foundation of CT are members of DesegregateCT, a coalition of more than two dozen prominent organizations and legislators supporting statewide land-use reform. On July 14, the coalition demonstrated support for special session legislation and highlighted key priorities; however, legislative leaders tabled housing segregation, as part of the session.


  • Expanded Unemployment Benefits End. The additional $600 per week added to unemployment benefits through the CARES Act ended July 31. The leaders of CT’s emergency response efforts are concerned this income loss will leave many more people in need, and put additional pressures on already strained support systems. Food banks are reporting a spike in need, with one food bank reporting a 15% increase in demand in the last week. Housing advocates are expecting to see evictions at double to triple the usual rate as the state’s eviction moratorium expires on August 22. The Department of Housing programs that opened on July 15 have been overwhelmed by calls from renters and homeowners seeking help. Advocates express concern that without additional state and federal resources, CT residents will face a sharp increase in housing and food insecurity.

  • HEALS Act for Coronavirus Pandemic Relief. On Monday, July 27, the Senate introduced the Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection and Schools (HEALS) Act, the follow-up legislation to the $2 trillion CARES Act enacted in March. Major proposed tax provisions of the HEALS Act include: an additional round of economic impact payments for individuals, restructured Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, expansion of the Paycheck Protection Program, an increased Employee Retention Tax Credit, expansion of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, and creation of a new refundable Payroll Tax Credit for Coronavirus Expenses.

  • Update on Paycheck Protection Program. August 8 is the extended deadline for applying for a federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan. An estimated $130 billion remains available for these federal loans. According to the CT Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner David Lehman, Connecticut has outpaced other states in securing PPP funds; 58,000 Connecticut organizations have received loans equaling $6.6 billion. On June 26, the Small Business Administration issued a final rule on regulation changes made to the PPP loan forgiveness process, confirming that borrowers can submit forgiveness applications any time on or before the date the loan matures.

  • Nonprofits received 3.7% of all loans made under the Paycheck Protection Program. The Johnson Center for Philanthropy analyzed recently-released data from the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Small Business Administration to determine the impact of the Paycheck Protection Program on how nonprofits fared under the program and its impact on nonprofit employment. The research findings include: nationwide, nonprofits received 3.7% of all loans made under this program; those 181,680 nonprofit PPP loans protected 4.1 million nonprofit jobs; and a typical lender made approximately 4–5% of their total loans to a nonprofit.

  • Main Street Lending Program Expansion and Extension.  In mid-July, the Federal Reserve Board announced the expansion of the Main Street Lending Program to include loans to nonprofits. That lending program was due to expire on September 30, but this week the Feds announced an extension through December 31. They anticipate that the three-month extension will strengthen the economy by helping businesses and nonprofits recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • Update on Census 2020.  US Census Outreach to Begin in CT. Canvassing for the US Census that was put on hold due to COVID-19 has resumed in key areas. Census takers, outfitted with PPE, began canvassing door-to-door late in July. Connecticut’s current self-response rate of 65.7% is the highest in the Northeast, but 3 cities are at less than 50%: Hartford, 43.6%; Bridgeport, 48.3%; and New Haven, 49.7%. Outreach in hard to count populations is critical, and 36 of Hartford’s 40 census tracts are considered hard to count.

  •  The State of the Black Census. Over the past three months of 2020 Census operations, the National Urban League has observed low response rates across heavily populated Black localities, both urban and rural. In the 2010 Census, 3.7 million African Americans were left uncounted, an "omission" rate higher than any other ethnic group. The State of the 2020 Census: An Accurate Black Count at Risk highlights areas of low response and outlines key reasons Black communities are at risk of being undercounted again in the 2020 Census.


  • Public Data Platform to Assist Voter Registration. The Connecticut Data Collaborative (CT Data) is constructing a public data platform designed to provide organizations seeking to increase voter registration and voting in Connecticut with the data necessary to target their efforts more effectively. With suppot from a civic engagement grant awarded by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, CT Data will provide data, analysis, and technical assistance to help inform voter outreach. Historical data on voter engagement and current demographics by neighborhood will help organizations target outreach efforts and increase voter registration and participation. Read more >>  

  • Universal Civic Duty Voting. The Brookings Institution and the Ash Center at the Harvard Kennedy School released a report, Lift Every Voice: The Urgency of Universal Civic Duty Voting, proposing that the United States consider participation in elections as a requirement of citizenship, as is the case with jury service. "Universal civic duty voting is an indispensable and transformative step toward full electoral participation." Read more >>  

  The power of good work . . . Member News

CCP shares member news in the Member eBrief, the Connecticut Philanthropy Digest, and on CCP's website and social media channels. Send your press releases and newsletters to Laurie Allen for help in amplifying your news. 

COVID-19 Makes Corporate Volunteerism A Virtual Experience. The Hartford Business Journal's Nonprofit Notebook recently featured Cigna, Webster Bank, and Travelers' corporate engagement activities. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, each employee-volunteering program has adapted to virtual experiences with its nonprofit partners. Read more >>

Grants Supporting Organizations Led by People of Color and Amplifying Youth Voice. Nellie Mae Education Foundation announced their first grant awards under their new organizational strategy to advance racial equity in public education. Their Supporting Organizations Led By People of Color grants will provide $100,000 annually for three years to organizations led by leaders of color who are working to transform barriers to racial equity in public education. Their Amplifying Youth Voice grants will support youth organizing groups with three-year general operating support grants of $52,750 annually, as well as technical assistance focused on building their capacity, power, and voice. Read more >>

Partnership Loan Program for Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses. The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and partners announced a new loan program that provides relief and recovery resources for small businesses owned by people of color and women. These small businesses have received a disproportionately low percentage of federal aid from programs created in response to the economic shutdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Partnership Loan Program for Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses in New Haven and the Lower Naugatuck Valley is a $1.5 million revolving loan pool created by a public-private partnership among The Community Foundation Mission Investments Company (TCF-MIC), the City of New Haven, the Amour Propre Fund, and HEDCO Inc. The program will offer partially forgivable low-interest loans of up to $25,000 for qualifying businesses in New Haven, Derby, and Ansonia. Learn more >>  

Youth Voices on COVID-19. In April of 2020, as part of their institutional response to COVID19, The Perrin Family Foundation launched a youth communication project to capture how young people were experiencing the global crisis. More than 300 Connecticut youth responded with submissions answering five key questions about their current challenges and visions for the future. Knowing that many young people most vulnerable to the inequitable impact of COVID19 would not benefit from federal stimulus supports, all young people who submitted a response received a stipend. Over the next few weeks, the Foundation will be sharing the youth experiences and connecting the stories to broad themes and issues, including education, mental health, and immigration. The series was introduced in an op-ed, “Young People’s Voices Are Key to Recovery,” by Perrin Family Foundation President Laura McCargar. Project co-sponsors with the Perrin Family Foundation were the Leever Foundation, Ritter Family Foundation, and the Nellie Mae Education Foundation. Read more >>

COVID-19-Related Funder News. Find news about CCP Members and other Connecticut funders responding to the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more >>

Member Events

Communities of Faith Are Crucial to Greater Hartford’s Wellbeing. AUGUST 6: 3:00 - 4:00 PM: Virtual Convening
Long before the COVID-19 pandemic and the growing call for racial justice, the region’s churches, mosques, and synagogues were providing the community with physical and spiritual nourishment as well as a host of other critical services. Jay Williams, president of the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, invites local faith leaders (clergy and laity) to share their experiences and learn about the Foundation's work supporting the residents of the Hartford region. Learn more and register >>

Virtual Immigration Convening. AUGUST 11: 10:00 - 12:00 PM; Virtual Convening
Join Fairfield County's Community Foundation for a virtual convening bringing together nonprofits and leaders of the immigrant community to strategize the best ways to support Fairfield County's immigrants and their families. The interactive panel discussions will explore innovations and successes in immigrant support, and Fairfield County cities’ COVID-19 recovery. Lean more and register >> 

Member Reports, Blogs, and Recordings

  The power of good ideas . . . Resources


  • CCP's Coronavirus Resources for Funders and Nonprofits. Find resources for philanthropic organizations and nonprofits responding to the Coronavirus pandemic, including CCP Member-only resources, active COVID-19 Response Funds, COVID-19-Related Funders News, and Funder resources by issue.

  • COVID-19 Webinar Series. The Center for Disaster Philanthropy produced nine webinars on COVID-19. Webinar topics included: Making Effective Rapid Response Grants; Place-based Grantmakers and Investing in Local Communities; How Philanthropy Can Stand Up for Vulnerable Populations; Grantmaking to Support Children and Older Adults; and Support for Mental Health, Bereavement and Grief. Access all of the webinar recordings >> 

  • Funder Support During the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Center for Effective Philanthropy released a new report that provides a comprehensive look at the stark realities US nonprofits face during the COVID-19 crisis. The report sheds light on which organizations face the toughest challenges, what is most needed from funders, and what differences in experience are emerging based on characteristics such as organization type and gender of nonprofit leaders. The data in this report also reveals what nonprofits have found to be most helpful from institutional foundations and individual donors, and what they need most from both groups in the current moment. View the related webinar and download the PowerPoint presentation >>

  • Data Highlighting COVID-19 Inequities in CT. DataHaven's new report and CT Mirror articles highlighting its key findings on food insecurity, the opioid crisis, housing and homelessness, and health equity provide insight into COVID-19 data and health inequities. Towards Health Equity in Connecticut looks at data across five broad social determinants of health and discusses how the pandemic has magnified the social forces that lead to health disparities, particularly in Black and Latino communities, and how to address them. DataHaven and Purple States also produced a four-part video series, COVID-19 Reckonings, with residents of Connecticut communities hardest hit by the pandemic because of longstanding inequities.

  • COVID-19 Testing Outreach Campaign Toolkit. The state of CT has launched a bilingual campaign, Knowing is Better or ¡Fuera Covid!, to encourage COVID-19 testing among more vulnerable residents including the elderly and those living in densely populated urban areas. A free marketing “toolkit” is available to assist local and community partners with outreach efforts. The toolkit includes print-ready images, text, and social media posts that can be modified with information unique to each organization.

  •  State EITCs are Part of an Equitable Policy Response to COVID-19. A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities encourages states to enact and strengthen state-level Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC) to create an anti-racist policy response to the COVID-19 crisis. The report, 3 Principles for an Anti-Racist, Equitable State Response to COVID-19 – and a Stronger Recovery, lays out principles to guide state policymakers in equity efforts.


Economic Justice Issue Brief. Connecticut Voices for Children recently released their Issue Briefing Book 2020-2022. Updated to reflect the convergence of a health crisis, an economic recession due to that crisis, and watershed conversations on race, the Issue Book outlines research, policies, and recommendations to promote an equitable recovery in Connecticut and advance action to ensure economic security for all families in the state. Full Brief >>   Abridged Brief >>


Learning Approaches Prepare and Support Early Childhood Educators. Ideal Learning Roundtable's new report evaluates equity barriers and opportunities for educators within eleven early childhood educator development models. The report provides detailed profiles of each model — assessing factors like cost, demographics, geography, format, and prerequisites — and identifies opportunities to scale equitabilty for policymakers, researchers, philanthropists, and the early childhood education field as a whole to create more equitable pathways for early educators to thrive in high-quality contexts while meeting degree and licensure requirements.


New Insight on Foundation Engagement in Policy. The Center for Effective Philanthropy's (CEP) new report, Policy Influence: What Foundations Are Doing and Why, distills key findings from a survey and indepth interviews with foundation leaders to provide foundation staff, leaders, and boards with data and insights on philanthropic involvement in public policy and why leaders see it as a crucial lever for change, and guidance on practices to thoughfully engage in policy efforts.


Philanthropy and Social Movements. This podcast series examines the history and future of philanthropy’s relationship with social movements. The podcasts feature interviews with activists, funders, and experst on a variety of topics examining themes of race, power, and equity in philanthropy. The podcasts were produced by students enrolled in the Harvard Kennedy School's “Philanthropy and Social Movements: Will the Revolution Be Funded?” during the spring 2020 semester. 


New Value of Volunteer Time. The estimated National Value of Volunteer Time was $27.20 per hour in 2019, an increase of 6.9% from 2018, while Connecticut's was $32.07, a 3.3% increase from 2018. The recent update to the Value of Volunteer Time was a partnership between Independent Sector and the University of Maryland's Do Good Institute. It constituted a revisit to the methodology used in prior years with updated assumptions behind the method. Learn more >>    

  The power of good people . . . Colleague news   

Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut recently welcomed Heidi Green, director of donor communications and advising, to raise operating and grantmaking dollars needed to wage the fight for health care for everybody. Heidi’s non-profit experience spans nearly two decades, building up progressive causes. She works with high net worth individuals, foundations, legacy donors, and monthly givers.

NYU Wagner recently highlighted alumna Karen Brown (MPA '97), who, since March 18, has helped raise over $2M for Fairfield County's COVID Resiliency Fund at Fairfield County's Community Foundation. As vice president of development and philanthropic services, she has been inspired by the amazing way individual and corporate donors have stepped up to support the Resiliency Fund. Karen works with Foundation senior staff and board members to strategize and execute on the Foundation's overall fundraising and business development initiatives. Karen also works closely with a cadre of donor-advised fund holders to provide philanthropic advisory services and serves as the Foundation's liaison to Social Venture Partners Connecticut, a program and field of interest fund.    

  The power of good connections . . . Job Opportunities

Find Jobs >>

Have an opening at your organization? Contact Laurie Allen to include your position in CCP's job bank free of charge as a benefit of membership.    

  About the Member eBrief

The Member eBrief, is a CCP members-only electronic newsletter. Members receive the bi-monthly publication to keep them current on upcoming CCP programs, member and colleague news, trends, and new resources. Members are encouraged to send press releases, public events, announcements, newsletters, and colleague news to Laurie Allen, director of communications.

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