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WNY Women’s Fund
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  1. WNY Women’s Fund April 17, 2008

  2. The Advisory Board of the WNY Women’s Fund and I would like to THANK YOU for taking time to learn more about the WNY Women’s Fund and, most importantly, for giving us your thoughts!

  3. Agenda • Discuss objective of the day • Provide an overview of the global network • Review the WNY Women’s Fund mission & needs • Present recent grant making activity • Your feedback!

  4. We will use your feedback to guide our strategic plan • We are beginning our strategic planning process • We have a international expert on Women’s Funds facilitating two retreats for our Board in May and June to set our strategic direction • We invited you here today to hear your thoughts on: • What excites you about the WNY Women’s Fund and what concerns you • What role we should play in the community

  5. The lunch seeks your feedback • Presentation 12:10pm – 12:30pm • Table discussion 12:30pm – 1:00pm • Each table has an Advisory Board member who will facilitate the discussion • Table summaries 1:00pm – 1:30pm • The facilitator will present to the group the major takeaway • We will present our new strategic plan that you helped to shape this summer

  6. Agenda • Discuss objective of the day • Provide an overview of the global network • Review the WNY Women’s Fund mission & needs • Present recent grant making activity • Your feedback!

  7. Women’s Fund Network is growing There are Women’s Funds on six continents Each fund believes that an investment in a woman is an investment in her family and ultimately her community and her nation CAGR = 8.7% Source: The Women’s Funding Network

  8. Women’s funds are becoming financially significant in funding grants In 2006, these funds collectively invested $50 million in organizations working with women and girls Over 25 Women’s Funds have received gifts of $1 million or more CAGR = 13.7% Source: The Women’s Funding Network

  9. Investments tend to focus on poverty • Over 80% of investments by women’s funds go to women living in poverty or most affected by issues such as homelessness, violence, and human rights abuses • The top funding priority for women’s funds is the eradication of poverty through the empowerment of women and girls • Other priorities include: combating violence, improving access to education and healthcare, and reproductive rights

  10. Each Women’s Fund is unique in its implementation Women’s Funds … • play many roles in communities • Research, advocacy, grant making, programming • use innovative methods to promote change • Girls grant committees, magazine publications, seminars • have various governance structures • Part of community foundations, independent

  11. Agenda • Discuss objective of the day • Provide an overview of the global network • Review the WNY Women’s Fund mission & needs • Present recent grant making activity • Your feedback!

  12. Our focus has been economic self sufficiency • Our mission is to invest in innovative solutions to issues and needs of special significance to women and girls in Western New York • Our current objectives are: • Give women and girls tools to become economically self sufficient • Be the central knowledge hub for issues affecting women and girls • Be the investment of choice for people who want to improve the status of women and girls • Develop women and girls as philanthropists for issues affecting women and girls

  13. We were founded with a common purpose • In 1999 the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County and the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo each recognized the need to: • Direct funding specifically to programs that affect women and girls • Increase philanthropy among women • With a dedicated group of community volunteers and critical seed money from Community Foundation and the United Way, the WNY Women’s Fund was founded giving its first grants away in 2002

  14. We have raised over $1.7 million over the past eight years The vast majority of our funds has come from individual donors The Peggy Balbach Founder’s Circle recognizes those who have given $25,000 or more

  15. We have made over $260K in grants over the past seven years * To date.

  16. Buffalo has the second highest poverty rate of any major city Source: US Census Bureau for 2006. Major city is a city with over 250,000 people.

  17. This poverty affects our children Poverty • Of the 20,000 children living in Buffalo: • 45% live in households below 100% of the Federal poverty level ($20,650 for a family of four) • Over half of 3- and 4-year old children live with a single parent • Approximately 1,000 children are born each year to mothers without a high school diploma Education • 60% of fourth graders and 67% of eighth graders in Buffalo Public Schools are not meeting grade level standards in literacy • 39% of children entering 9th grade at Buffalo Public Schools drop out without graduating Source: Good Schools for All – October 2007 based on US Census Bureau.

  18. “When you educate a woman, you educate a family. Give a woman health care and a family has health care. An economically secure woman means an economically secure family.” - World Bank

  19. Agenda • Discuss objective of the day • Provide an overview of the global network • Review the WNY Women’s Fund mission & needs • Present recent grant making activity • Your feedback!

  20. Our grant philosophy has been to invest deeply in programs • In 2001 and 2002, we made smaller investments ($2,500 - $5,000) in more programs • For example, in 2002 we granted seven programs with an average of $6,000 • These programs included: Compeer, Hopevale, and Homespace • More recently, the Fund made a decision to invest more deeply in fewer programs • For example, in 2006 we invested $40K in two programs

  21. We have invested in middle school girls • From 2003-2006, the Fund invested $105K • Girl Power was a collaborative mentoring and achievement program for 7th and 8th grade girls at the Herman Badillo Billingual Academy • In 2006, all the 8th grade girls graduated and 80% of the 7th graders • All milestones established by the grants committee were met • Academic achievement, increased homework completion, school engagement and positive feelings resulted from the program

  22. We have supported Free Tax Preparation • From 2005-2006, the Fund invested $16K to develop and implement a marketing campaign and needs assessment • There was an increase of 160% in participation in 2005 and 29% in 2006 • The increase in tax refunds and credits is a benefit to the individual and to the local economy • Over 21,000 tax returns were completed over the two years * In Erie County.

  23. Our most recent grant activity is focused on economic self sufficiency for women … IDA Funding • This program provides Individual Development Accounts (IDA). Qualified women will have the opportunity to leverage their savings two to one. For every dollar a woman places into the account, the federal government will match it along with local foundation money • IDA savings can only be used for education, home ownership, or beginning a business • IDAs have been used very successfully in cities throughout the county • WNY Women’s Fund is a part of the local match targeting IDAs specifically for 10 women CASH Coaches • A program that links women with a mentor to assist them in improving their financial management skills • Coaches will meet with their clients to identify 3-5 individual outcomes (e.g. learning to read and review a credit report, opening up a personal checking account and managing it) to be tracked during program participation of five to eight months • WNY Women’s Fund is funding the training program for Coaches

  24. …and summer “learning loss” for girls Summer Camp • Individual, low income middle-school girls will receive scholarships for the summer of 2008 to attend summer camps at local all female high schools • According to a recent study done by John Hopkins University, low income students lose 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in math and 3.0 months in reading during the summer

  25. Agenda • Discuss objective of the day • Provide an overview of the global network • Review the WNY Women’s Fund mission & needs • Present recent grant making activity • Your feedback!