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October 2020
Welcome Back!
Mary Pietan
Welcome back to another busy season for WGA. I hope each of you had an enjoyable summer, even though I am certain it was different from previous summers.

I was surprised at how the summer flew by, given the restrictions and cautions we are all living with. But like the agencies we fund, I am also equally certain that you are all learning to live with this "new normal" and are pivoting as necessary.

That is exactly what we learned from the members of 22 agencies who joined us on August 11 for our annual convening. Last spring we were keeping our fingers crossed that the agencies currently receiving grants would be able to continue their work, and we found out that not only are they continuing their work, but in many cases the fact that they (agencies and their clients) have had to learn to do everything virtually is actually a bit of a blessing. During our Annual Meeting on October 21 you will hear just how resilient these agencies are and the same with the women and girls they serve!

You won’t want to miss the 2020 Annual Meeting … even if it has to be virtual. If ever there was a time for strategic philanthropy, this is it!

I want to express my sincere thanks to all of the WGA members who served as Steering Committee members and Committee chairs during my term 2018–2020. WGA learned so much from each of you and it is deeply appreciated. During the Annual meeting I will pass the gavel to Jan Healy, President-Elect, and she will share a bit of her plans for the upcoming two years. Please join us! Continue staying safe and thank you!



WGA Annual Meeting Oct. 21, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. (via Zoom)
annual meeting via zoom

WGA recognizes the significant impact the coronavirus is having on our grantees and the populations they serve. Dial in to the Annual Meeting to learn more about how current grantee agencies are faring with the challenges of COVID and how WGA can help. And we will have an update on WGA's continued efforts to live out our mission of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

This would be an excellent time to invite a friend to learn more about WGA. No carpooling and no getting lost on the way to UNF!

There is no charge for this meeting – and you can make whatever you want for lunch! -- but you and your guests must register in advance in order to get the Zoom link sent to you.

Registration by Friday, October 16 is appreciated. REGISTER HERE

More Good News!
An article titled "Inclusive Philanthropy," in a recent issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review, mentioned the Women's Giving Alliance as an example of a giving circle on the cutting edge of innovative practice. Above is the link to the entire article, and you will find the WGA callout about two-thirds of the way through. And, here is a reprint of just that portion of the article.

"The Women's Giving Alliance in Jacksonville, Florida, is on the cutting edge of innovative practice. The alliance has invested $6.5 million since 2001 to improve the lives of women and girls and established an endowment that has grown to more than $3.5 million. In 2011, it launched its first three-year strategy to allocate awards in the single focus area of mental health, then later adopted a second focus area—breaking the cycle of female poverty—and moved to the forefront of convening local organizations and individuals around that issue, forming a coalition called Lift Jacksonville. Through this effort, alliance members advocated in the Florida state capitol for a new law that banned marriage for children under age 17."

Strategic Plan
The WGA Steering Committee has been working since last January on an update of our strategic plan and during our September 16, 2020 meeting it was unanimously approved. Please take a moment to review the WGA 2020–2022 Strategic Plan and learn about WGA's goals, strategies for achieving those goals as well as some measurements of our success. We are all very excited about the road map for achieving our potential and growth in so many areas. I hope you will be a part of this great effort.

Review: Poverty's Impact on Children
poverty panel

Our WGA education events offer insights into the issues confronting women and girls in Northeast Florida, enabling us to be better informed, strategic philanthropists.

On Wednesday, September 16, over 60 participants joined us virtually for the WGA Education event on Poverty's Impact on Children panel discussion. Not surprisingly, COVID has had a negative impact of this already vulnerable population. Moderator – Jennifer Brown, KIPP, and panelists Sara Alford, Big Brothers Big Sisters; Pedro Cohen, James Weldon Johnson YMCA; Denise Marzullo, Early Learning Coalition; and Vicki Waytowich, Partnership for Child Health, spoke to us on the challenges faced by these children and how we can help.

In Florida, 40 percent of families with children living in poverty are female-headed households.  And children who grow up in the bottom fifth of national family income are more likely to remain in poverty as adults. And so many of the obstacles these families face are exacerbated by COVID. Some families are keeping their children home from school because other members of the household are immune-compromised and if they are fortunate to have a computer or laptop often the WIFI is expensive, unavailable in their area, or available with bad reception. If children miss school not only are they falling behind, but they also may be missing out on the one or two meals per day offered through the school system, so now hunger becomes an issue.

Connectors Are as Busy as Ever!
wga connectors

We missed our Connector Events this spring as we adjusted, adapted and accommodated, but the Zoom Virtual Downtown Connector on July 14 was a huge success! 47 members attended and we did a fun polling exercise, broke into small groups for more intimate discussions and had Gateway Services talk about our WGA grant and changes they have made during COVID.

The fall schedule is full of Zoom Virtual Connector Events. All members are welcome to join any or all, so please register and stay connected.
  • San Marco: October 15, 4:00 p.m. REGISTER HERE
  • North Beaches: October 27, 7:00 p.m. featuring a speaker from the DBW Policy Center. REGISTER HERE
  • Ponte Vedra/Marsh Landing: November 5, 7:00 p.m. REGISTER HERE
  • Mandarin/Deerwood/Orange Park featuring a speaker from Her Song: TBD
Visit WGA Grant Recipient Sulzbacher Village
Sulzbacher Center
Sulzbacher Village is an award-winning, national model for ending homelessness for women and families, providing dignified services that include permanent supportive housing, emergency housing, pediatric healthcare, therapeutic early learning center, job readiness and job placement services.
All services are offered in a 92,000 square foot community located in the Brentwood neighborhood of Jacksonville. Please join us for a virtual tour of this great facility via Zoom.

Friday, November 6 at 11:00 a.m. REGISTER HERE

WGA Needs a Communications Liaison
WGA is looking for a communications consultant/liaison to assist in coordinating the communication strategy and tactics in the coming year. Please click here for the job requirements; contact Joanne Cohen (jcohen@jaxcf.org) for details or to apply. Thank you!

Welcome, New Members
Leslie Brotman
Laurie Simon
Lauren Venoy

Marie O'Keefe
Nina Waters
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