Fall Updates From Kim

Posted on November 16, 2021

The blustery windstorms and shorter days have arrived, so too has vaccine access for some of our youngest kiddos. Hooray! I know many parents have been waiting for this day to arrive, and my hope is that it will bring some peace of mind to many who have felt overwhelmed and anxious for too long. While I don’t have children of my own, I do have two dogs and together, we are making our way through the darker, colder, wetter walks, along with the muddy paws. My dogs have brought me great joy and lots of laughter and love over the past year plus...and yet, I am happy to leave them at home to return to the office.

At SFF, we too have a few milestones to celebrate. We welcomed our first climate team member, Karen Laughlin, in October. She will direct our climate investments moving forward, and you can read more about her professional pathway to SFF, along with a few fun facts, in our feature story. We said farewell to Fremont and moved offices this fall, and are excitedly exploring our new neighborhood of Pioneer Square. While outfitting a new office takes time, our team is back together a few days a week and enjoying the shared space and ability to connect safely. In education, we are committing to additional years of funding with our parent and family engagement organizations, expanding those partnerships to a total of five years so that they have what they need to recover and do their best work. While the pandemic is not over, and the continued need for basic needs supports is still so critical, we are talking more about opportunities to support partners in their efforts to recover and rebuild. We signed the BIPOC-ED Funders Pledge earlier in the year and greatly respect the more than 200 BIPOC nonprofit leaders across the state who are calling on funders of all types and sizes to give more, fund differently, and partner in addressing the inequities in communities. We are keeping our eye towards advocacy efforts, and we provided additional support to capacity building organizations (Communities Rise, Latino Community Fund, Washington Community Alliance, and Washington Nonprofits) who provide technical assistance, education, and training around accessing funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). It is vitally important to understand and acknowledge that the impacts of the pandemic, the impacts of climate change, and the continued efforts of voter suppression impact Black, Indigenous, and people of color communities disproportionately. We will continue to explore how our work can best align to that reality, and how we can advance change at multiple levels to eliminate disparities.

I wish our partners and the broader nonprofit community good wishes during an important fundraising time of year. A majority of annual gifts roll in over the next two months: let us be generous and reach for greater levels of understanding and gift giving to meet the need.