Community Foundations in Action

 
 Seattle Foundation senior executive Michael Brown is leading the foundation's new Civic Commons initiative. Photo courtesy of the Seattle Foundation

Seattle Foundation senior executive Michael Brown is leading the foundation's new Civic Commons initiative. Photo courtesy of the Seattle Foundation

a democratic approach to racial equity 

True community change doesn’t happen from the top down. It comes instead from working closely with those who have the most at stake.

That’s the thinking behind Civic Commons — a new Seattle Foundation effort that aims to build a new regional civic infrastructure through an innovative approach that involves giving community voices the final say in key decisions. The undertaking builds on the Foundation’s longstanding work to advance racial and economic equity by increasing the voice and power of communities.

“Civic Commons shows that Seattle realizes that it needs a different approach to tackle its serious social and economic challenges,” said Bruce Katz, author of The New Localism. “Truly solving problems requires more democracy, not less, and the Civic Commons has the opportunity to show how the downward and horizontal movement of power can produce better, more sustainable results for all.”

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improving mental Health 

When the Community Foundation of Collier County in Florida conducted a community needs and assets assessment in 2017, it made a surprising discovery. This survey report determined an alarming statistic that the ratio of mental healthcare providers to population ratio is 977:1 in Collier County as compared to 689:1 in Florida. 

The Community Foundation of Collier County has responded to these needs by recently granting over $57,000 in mental health program grants including $15,000 to the Naples Therapeutic Riding Center to help expand riding time for its therapeutic riding program, offer concurrent lessons, and add two PATH-certified instructors and add two volunteer coordinators.

Click here to view the Community Needs Assessment study.

 The Community Foundation of Collier County is helping tackle mental health care by funding initiatives such as the Naples Therapeutic Riding Center.

The Community Foundation of Collier County is helping tackle mental health care by funding initiatives such as the Naples Therapeutic Riding Center.


 Hurricane Harvey in Houston, 2017 Courtesy: Greater Houston Community Foundation

Hurricane Harvey in Houston, 2017
Courtesy: Greater Houston Community Foundation

rebuilding communities after disaster

When Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston in 2017, the community turned to the Greater Houston Community Foundation to lead and administer the philanthropic response.

The Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund -- which has raised more than $113.7 million -- is focused on immediate and long-term relief efforts in Harris County and Houston and reflects the community's trust in a foundation that has helped Houston recover from previous disasters such as Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Ike. It was established by Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County Judge Ed Emmett

The Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund is one of many examples of community foundation-led relief and recovery efforts that are set up across the United States each year.