This spring, the Foundation started Giving Together, a new program aimed to increase impact by pooling our resources to support organizations making a difference in the community.  This program allows donors to co-invest with the Foundation in supporting the important work of our Capacity Building Program partners.

The Giving Together pilot provided a total of $85,000 for our past Youth Literacy Partners.  We’re excited to now offer our first cohort of Community Development Partners the opportunity to receive unrestricted funding through Giving Together this fall.  These local nonprofits recognize the importance of shelter, employment, and access to basic needs in order to alleviate poverty in our community.

Our goal is to provide a one-time, $10,000 grant to each of these past partners. These organizations were selected by local experts in community development through a competitive process. The Foundation will provide $5,000 to each organization through our discretionary funds. We encourage fundholders to give together with us through your fund, helping us reach that $10,000 goal per organization. You can give to the program in general, or to the specific organization(s) of your choosing!  Contact our Donor Services line at 919.474.8363 with any questions, and log into your fund before October 31, 2016 to make an inter-fund transfer.

Giving Together Partners

Catholic CharitiesCatholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh, Inc.

About: The Support Circle Program for Homeless Families is a program of Catholic Charities in Wake County working in partnership with 75+ faith communities of different denominations with the mission of ending homelessness one household at a time. A Support Circle is a partnership of about eight individuals in a faith community or other organization who commit for one year to partner with a family experiencing homelessness to assist them with attaining and maintaining permanent housing, securing employment, budget counseling, mentoring and moral support. The Support Circles also provide tutoring and mentoring of the children in the family. Through the power of matching grants from the City of Raleigh and the Stewards Fund, a $10,000 grant will house 4 to 5 families for a year while providing the power of mentoring relationships for both adults and children. Adults also benefit from participating in the Jobs for Life program to secure employment.

In Their Words: One example of a life transformed is Lakesha. The encouragement and skills she received from her Support Circle and Jobs for Life were the driving force for change. A single mother of 10 year-old son, Lakesha said that before these programs that “life was stressful. I was in early recovery and separated from my son after being homeless for a long time”. After working with her Support Circle for a year, she considers them family. “After completing the program, the relationship with my Support Circle will always be there. They helped me increase my self-worth and have more pride being a parent.” Lakesha also completed Catholic Charities’ Jobs for Life Program. “Even though they do not guarantee you a job after completing the program, they do tell you that you will be a new person.  They were right! I am much more confident about myself and that shows,” she said.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: With funding from the Foundation, Catholic Charities completed a strategic planning process for their Catholic Parish Outreach Food Pantry and Centro para Familias Hispanas.  Based on feedback from clients, the agency realized a need for employment services, and has since partnered with StepUp Ministries, Dress for Success, Alliance Medical Ministries, and the Boys and Girls Club to create the Family Table Collaborative.  These partners provide employment training services, primary medical care, and after-school care onsite for families taking part in Catholic Charities’ services.

Twitter: CathCharDoR | Facebook: Catholic-Charities-of-the-Diocese-of-Raleigh

Compass CenterCompass Center for Women and Families

About: Compass Center for Women and Families helps all people navigate their journey to self-sufficiency, safety, and health. They empower individuals and promote equal access to opportunity regardless of gender or economic status. Their services include career and financial education, domestic violence crisis and prevention programs, assistance with legal resources, and youth health programs.

Compass Center’s self-sufficiency services include career and financial workshops and individual counseling, helping clients find a job or attain a better job, and building skills like budgeting and debt management strategies. A key component of Compass Center’s strategic plan is expanding its successful self-sufficiency programs to better serve clients with limited English proficiency and/or who are experiencing domestic violence. Giving Together funds will be used to support and grow these self-sufficiency programs. Since 98% of domestic violence victims experience financial abuse, empowering domestic violence clients with tools to enable self-sufficiency is especially critical to their continued well-being.

In Their Words: Jamie was referred to Compass Center by the Chapel Hill Police Department, who had taken out domestic violence charges against Jamie’s husband. Compass Center safety planned with Jamie and helped her complete a Domestic Violence Protective Order. The Orange County Sheriff’s Office helped Jamie file the paperwork and she was granted a temporary protective order.

Jamie shared with Compass Center concern that she could face eviction. Advocates connected Jamie to Compass Center’s career counseling program for support in finding a job. Jamie shared her eviction concern with her attorney who requested financial support—the judge awarded this and a one year protective order. Jamie expressed hope because she had a job interview lined up, but she could not afford child care at this time. Compass Center offered to pay the cost of a drop-in daycare center. A week later, Compass Center received a call from Jamie—SHE GOT THE JOB!”

Foundation Staff Endorsement: Compass Center was formed as a result of the merger of The Women’s Center and Family Violence Prevention Center of Orange County.  Two years after the merger, Compass Center recognized the need to, and were ready to, provide all of their services from one location in order to improve integration of services, increase accessibility for clients, and improve staff cohesion and morale.  The Foundation’s support improved the organization’s IT and telephone systems as part of the office unification, and allowed the staff a shift in focus to implementing victim-focused career services with an evidence-based group model.

Twitter: compasscenternc | Facebook: compasscenternc

Community Empowerment FundCommunity Empowerment Fund

About: CEF enables homeless and near-homeless individuals to gain employment, secure housing, build savings, and connect to resources for greater health and wellbeing. CEF provides relationship-based support to each of the participants (called Members) through a student-driven volunteer model. Trained volunteer Advocates, primarily from UNC and Duke, work alongside Members towards achieving their goals. Advocates act as bridges and connectors, using a person-centered approach to address the many intersectional issues affecting each Member in a comprehensive way. Collaborating closely with partners, CEF provides hands-on assistance with steps big and small as Members strive to improve employment, housing, and health. CEF also offers innovative matched savings accounts and financial services, assisting the community’s lowest-income households to achieve financial dreams. A grant of $10,000 will enable CEF to further expand impact and achieve a 25% increase in outcomes, assisting 180 members to gain employment this year and 120 members to secure housing.

In Their Words: Phillip joined CEF two weeks after moving into the shelter in Chapel Hill. He lost his job 5 years prior after having a seizure, and had struggled to find employment and had been without a place of his own ever since. At CEF, Phillip began working with two Advocates, and the trio got started right away on a range of goals: everything from getting a cell phone to finding a stable job. They first secured replacement IDs for Phillip and enrolled in a program to provide Phillip with discounted prescriptions and medical care at UNC. Throughout, Phillip and his Advocates submitted dozens of job applications together, until finally, Phillip was offered a full-time position at a nearby restaurant! He began saving with CEF’s matched savings accounts, and his Advocates secured housing deposit assistance through a partner. In August, Phillip signed a lease for the first time in almost a decade!

Foundation Staff Endorsement: Community Empowerment Fund provides crucial support for individuals experiencing or at-risk of homelessness in Durham and Chapel Hill, and does so with an innovative volunteer structure that taps into the resources of our local university students.  With support from the Foundation, CEF developed clear logic models and evaluation metrics for each program area, customized their Salesforce CRM database, and provided training for volunteers to input and track data for each Member.  CEF now has one central system that both makes data collection easy and allows for ongoing analysis that will enable the organization to tie outcome-measurement directly into program design in the future.

Twitter: communityef | Facebook: communityef

Dress for Success TriangleDress for Success Triangle

About: The mission of Dress for Success is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life. They do this in partnership with over 120 Triangle nonprofits. These nonprofits refer women who are unemployed and underemployed and are seeking economic security. Three things that make Dress for Success Triangle unique are: 1) The network of support provided after clients get a job and the fact they are always a part of the Dress for Success Network; 2) strong corporate relationships; 3) a focus on living wage and career path jobs.

In Their Words: In January 2014 a tall, elegant woman came into the office for her interview suit. She stood in the waiting room looking dejected. A smiling image coach was upbeat and joyful yet the woman maintained a sullen expression. You could sense the tension and anger surrounding her. The coach prepared several outfits including a striking brown suit with matching shoes. The woman moved slowly into the dressing room not expecting much. She came out to look at herself. As she turned to face the full length mirror and caught a glimpse of her image, a startled expression came over her face and she said to no one in particular, “I feel like somebody. I wish my mother could see me now”. There was a lightness, a sense of pride and dignity that a few minutes earlier had been missing. A change had come over her.

Staff Endorsement: The ability of Dress for Success to fulfill its mission is directly dependent upon the strength of the program’s volunteer resources.  Building on the organization’s 2014 strategic plan, the Foundation provided support for the creation of a new volunteer coordinator position, which helped develop a new career coaching handbook, a digitized scheduling and tracking system for volunteers as part of the Salesforce database, and improved volunteer recruitment, retention, training, and recognition.  All of these efforts have led to expanded volunteerism with Dress for Success’ corporate partners and have allowed the organization to increase in the number of women they serve through the program by 25%.

Twitter: dfstnc | Facebook: dfstnc

DERCDurham Economic Resource Center

About: The mission of the Durham Economic Resource Center is to provide workforce development skills and assist with the elimination of employment barriers for Durham citizens through a supportive collaborative with Durham Technical Community College. Through intensive job training, case management, and career counseling, DERC provides “hard-to-employ” individuals with the skills, efficacy, and connections needed to enter the workforce. The objective of the workforce development program is to create a workforce capable of addressing the market needs of the Triangle.

DERC assists participants with employment that offers a livable wage that transitions them from poverty to self-sufficiency. DERC also emphasizes soft-skills, simulated work experience in our distribution center, which provides a correlation between performance and pay. With this $10,000 grant, DERC will offer the following: intensive workforce development training and recruitment, job development and placement, continuous engagement with program graduates, outcome tracking, and overall program management.

In Their Words: DERC’s demographics include the following: 82% have a criminal background, 86% are African American, 85% have mental health or substance abuse issues, 69% are homeless, and 65% do not have a valid driver’s license. These are the barriers that program participants work to overcome while enrolled in the workforce development program.

John enrolled in the program in 2013 with an extensive background that included: assault with a deadly weapon with intent to inflict serious injury, possession of Schedule II, DWI, and operating a vehicle without license. After being incarcerated, John’s barber’s license was revoked, and he was left unemployed. DERC’s coordinated job training program afforded him the opportunity to change his life.  Upon completion, John presented himself to the NC Board of Barber Examiners and had his barber’s license reinstated. He is now an employed, productive citizen of the Durham community.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: Support from Triangle Community Foundation helped DERC explore an innovative partnership with Urban Ministries of Durham and the Durham Literacy Center to provide intensive workforce development and soft skills training onsite for residents of the Urban Ministries shelter.  Several cohorts successfully completed the program and received financial assistance to move into their own apartments, but after two years of piloting, the program was discontinued due to differences in eligibility requirements.  The three agencies continue to work together to serve this population and provide referrals for literacy, shelter, and workforce development services.

Families Moving Forward

Families Moving Forward (previously Durham Interfaith Hospitality Network and Genesis Home)

About: Families Moving Forward (FMF) offers a temporary home to families with children in the crisis of homelessness.  Working together, FMF creates a path to stability and self-sufficiency through personalized services and ongoing community support. FMF was established on January 1, 2016 from the merger of Genesis Home and Durham Interfaith Hospitality Network. FMF believes that targeted services, community support, and volunteer involvement are the best way to rebuild lives. The agency works to wean families off public support through education and existing community resources and to transition households to better jobs and higher incomes.

FMF’s “Branching Out” aftercare program provides follow-up supportive services to ensure that families and children are on track to retain their housing and employment and are on a path to stability. A $10,000 grant provides housing, case management and 12 months of aftercare follow-up support to one family transitioning from homelessness to permanent housing.

In Their Words: Shinekka entered FMF just before Christmas in 2015 with her two young children. She came to FMF with no family support, no income, and a history of domestic violence. She expressed concerns about the violence her children witnessed and was immediately referred for both developmental screening and parent/child interaction therapy at her request. She quickly started working and saving her money with the hope of establishing herself as soon as possible. Shinekka stated that her goals are to continue to grow within her current job, start looking towards buying a home and saving for her children’s college.  She stated that being homeless has taught her to value the little things in life and plan ahead for the future.  It also taught her to stay positive.  Shinekka exited FMF in March, and continues to receive supportive services, both through our “Branching Out” aftercare program as well as other community resources.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: Durham Interfaith Hospitality Network participated in the Capacity Building Partnerships Program expecting to put together a financial plan that would enable the organization to shift their services from a rotational housing model to a stationary model.  After embarking on the process, however, DIHN realized that they could serve homeless families more effectively through a merger with Genesis Home, an organization they partnered with regularly.  The Foundation provided support for the two organizations to work with consultants to complete the merger and to launch a fundraising campaign to support renovations for co-location and the development of a robust aftercare program in the new agency.

Facebook: familiesmovingforwardnc

Farmworker Advocacy Network - SAF

Farmworker Advocacy Network (led by Student Action with Farmworkers in partnership with 15 other organizations)

About: Through the Farmworker Advocacy Network (FAN) a diverse group of nonprofit, government, and worker organizations identify key topics of concern to the predominantly immigrant farmworker population in NC, influence agencies to increase enforcement of laws protecting these workers, and inform and involve worker leaders and student activists in using policy advocacy campaigns to promote long-term agricultural reforms for farmworkers in NC.

FAN focuses on farmworker health and housing, with an emphasis on pesticides, child labor, heat stress, farmworker deaths, human trafficking, and migrant labor camps.  Our first targeted advocacy campaigns focused on migrant housing and pesticide reform resulting in the passage of two bills by the NC General Assembly. With a grant of $10,000, FAN can conduct community based participatory research on key community development issues, develop interventions to address immediate health and housing needs, and train and support workers and allies to advocate for long-term farm labor improvements.

In Their Words: “I worked along with my mom and my sister…It was hard work, but I didn’t say anything. I knew I had to work to help my mom.” – Leonila

Children working on farms are more likely than adults to die from work-related accidents. Farmworker children are more vulnerable to pesticide poisoning, musculoskeletal disorders, and high rates of injury and illness. Working in the fields also leads to high dropout rates as youth try to balance school and work. The Farmworker Advocacy Network works to eradicate child labor in NC’s fields. FAN members have participated in a child labor research study and created fact sheets and documentaries about child workers. FAN advocates for legislative change to ban children as young as 10 from working in the fields and engages affected youth and allies in speaking out about child labor.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: The Foundation’s support facilitated consultant interviews and a two-day retreat with key FAN members.  This enabled FAN members that had been less engaged to more fully participate in the coalition, bringing their expertise and knowledge about working with farmworkers to the table.  Additionally, this work enabled the Network to develop a coalition-wide strategy that focused on issues that affected all of the members and have a direct impact on whether farmworkers receive the services and support from member organizations.

Facebook: Farmworker-Advocacy-Network

Passage HomePassage Home, Inc.

About: Passage Home’s mission is to break the cycle of poverty using a comprehensive strategy that focuses on affordable housing, employment and health. They empower neighborhood residents to participate in community gardening, social enterprise job creation and product development.  As a result of this project, residents will increase employment skills, leadership development and participate as stakeholders in community oriented solutions to issues directly related to hunger, housing and employment.  As a result of this grant at least (5) residents will become employed and be involved in business development planning. Through this project and grant, Passage Home will be able to implement a plan to generate net revenue and make this sustainable over a longer term.  This project has begun at a small scale and Passage Home is working with evaluators with a vision for bringing it to greater scale, to employ more residents, create more businesses and increase impact.

In Their Words: Lester, a young father, had been separated from his children due to his lack of income, directly related to his employment limitations.  Passage Home CEO, Jeanne Tedrow, learned of his situation, got to know him and went about creating some solutions that would be of benefit to both Lester (he would become employed) and to Passage Home (their neighborhood garden would be completed).  As it turns out, Lester had completed a farmer training program and is a very hard worker, dedicated to self-improvement and grateful for any and all assistance.  But he wanted a hand up, not a hand out – just what Passage Home provides!  That was two years ago, and today, Lester is reunited with his children, fully employed at Passage Home, managing a work crew of (5) more residents who, like him, had employment and housing challenges.  He says, “one day at a time” success is achieved.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: Passage Home has fulfilled a critical need, particularly in Southeast Raleigh, since its inception.  Their participation in the Capacity Building Partnerships program came at a critical time, after significant organizational growth.  Funding was used to formalize a donor development process and software system, to strengthen the Board’s capacity, and to refine the logic models and evaluation processes for each of the organization’s program areas.

Rapid Rehousing - HNH

Rapid Rehousing Collaborative (Led by Housing for New Hope in partnership with Durham’s Partnership for Children, Families Moving Forward, and Urban Ministries of Durham)

About: Housing for New Hope (HNH) evolves to meet the needs of the homeless and those at-risk for homelessness. In 2015, HNH ended or prevented homelessness for 2,084 Durham neighbors through the following services: street outreach, case management, rental assistance, rapid rehousing, transitional housing, and permanent supportive housing.

Rapid Rehousing, a nationally recognized program, helps families and individuals secure permanent housing within 30 days of homelessness and prepare to retain housing. In addition to HNH, fellow partners in the Durham Collaborative to End Family Homelessness – Durham’s Partnership for Children, Families Moving Forward and Urban Ministries of Durham – also provide direct assistance to clients. A $10,000 grant would support HNH operations to secure permanent housing for clients. Activities include housing searches in Durham’s competitive affordable housing market, advocacy and rent negotiation with landlords on behalf of clients with one or more housing barriers, and utility and rent deposits for clients’ new homes.

In Their Words: Nobody thinks they will ever be homeless. “If anyone had told me I’d ever be homeless, I would have looked at them like they were crazy.” – former client James

Durham has homeless individuals and families. “You don’t know what to do with no money, no resources and my children are looking at me, like ‘What’s next, Mom?’ “– former client Equashia

HNH meets clients where they are to identify their needs. “I believe everyone is valuable and deserves dignity.” – Rapid Rehousing coordinator Cynthia

Staff help clients dream again. “I want my kids to have their own backyard. I want them to have their own rooms. And I will give that to them.” – former client Kimberly

HNH is proud to play a key role in stabilizing and supporting homeless clients: “We’re going insiiiiiide! We’re going insiiiiiide!” – Mya, a former client’s daughter, happily skipping toward her new home.

Foundation Staff Endorsement: The Durham Rapid Rehousing Collaborative has been one of the strongest local examples of multi-agency coordination in addressing homelessness.  The agencies have worked hard to develop a shared agenda, strong communication, and shared interests – all required components of collective impact.  Through the Capacity Building Partnerships program, the Foundation provided funding to launch the campaign to end and prevent child & family homelessness, which was instrumental in moving the collaboration to the next phase of development.

Twitter: Housing4NewHope | Facebook: housingfornewhope

Triangle Family ServicesTriangle Family Services

About: Since 1937, Triangle Family Services has served as the place to turn for innovative solutions for families facing crisis. TFS accomplishes its mission of “building a stronger community by strengthening the family,” through its three core program areas: Family Safety, Financial Stability, and Mental Health. TFS provides data-driven solutions to provide security to families, enabling our community to thrive.

TFS demonstrates an unprecedented, high standard of accountability and sustainability within the Triangle nonprofit community.  The agency has obtained three major designations:  A United Way of the Greater Triangle Agency of Excellence, a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, and a HUD-Approved Housing Counseling Agency. TFS is also accredited through the Council on Accreditation. These credentials not only set TFS apart from other area nonprofits, but also create an additional layer of confidence and accountability that the community, program participants, and supporters can depend on and trust. This grant would be used to further the organization’s mission and help local families in crisis.

In Their Words: “Jane” is a 10 year old girl who came to TFS after she suffered sexual abused by a male family friend for a year.  At the time she came to therapy her symptoms included getting in trouble in school, difficulty concentrating, poor grades, suicidal ideation (wanting to die), fear, self-blame and low self-esteem.  She started having more trouble in school when she started telling kids at school that she wanted to kill herself.

Through therapy at TFS, she learned what sexual abuse was, how many kids are sexually abused, how the abuser earns the trust, and that they often have abused other children, and that nothing she did had caused the abuse.  Since then, she has completed therapy and denies any trauma symptoms and has not had behavior problems at school.  She no longer has inaccurate beliefs related to the abuse and was able to process what happened to her.

Staff Endorsement: Triangle Family Services is dedicated to using data to look critically at programming to determine the best ways to serve families in crisis.  With support from Triangle Communtiy Foundation, TFS developed a new dashboard system for program evaluation that is integrated into their client-based portal.  By streamlining program data, the agency was able to systematically review intakes, open additional spots in the program, and to increase client generated fees that create a sustainable source of income for the organization.  This dashboard also resulted in a “hot zone” mapping project with Wake County and additional community-wide conversations about need in our community.

Twitter: tfsnc | Facebook: TriangleFamilyServices