Building Changes and Raikes Foundation call on donors and philanthropies to support vulnerable communities impacted by pandemic
Today, Building Changes and the Raikes Foundation launched the Washington State Student and Youth Homelessness COVID-19 Response Fund. With schools now closed through the end of the year, the Fund aims to ensure that communities impacted by COVID-19 are able to respond rapidly to the urgent and growing needs of homeless students and youth across Washington state.
As many as 50,000 students and unaccompanied youth experience homelessness each year in Washington, and 62 percent of students who experience homelessness are people of color. As COVID-19 threatens to push even more young people into unsafe living situations while potentially causing long-term disruptions to their education, the pandemic is exacerbating an already precarious situation.Read More
To our grantee partners,
Over the past few months, as we’ve watched COVID-19 balloon from a few hundred cases around the world to a full-blown pandemic, we’ve all been struggling to adjust to this new reality. Our team has appreciated being in touch with you, and we’re doing our best to be good partners during this challenging time. Based on the feedback we have received from a number of our grantees, we wanted to provide more clarity and certainty about our ongoing commitment to you.
We have signed the Council on Foundations’ COVID-19 Response Pledge, marking our commitment to be as flexible and responsive as possible with existing and new funding. We know many of our grantee partners are working hard to adapt in this moment, and we want to be as supportive as we can to allow grantees to do what they need to take care of their staff and the communities they serve.Read More
The spread of COVID-19 in Seattle and across the country affects us all, but particularly those who are most vulnerable in our society. That’s why the Raikes Foundation has contributed $50,000 to the Seattle Foundation’s COVID-19 Response Fund. We encourage foundations, companies and individuals of means in our community to identify what they can do to support others, including contributing to this fund to get much-needed resources into the hands of front line service providers and impacted communities during this time of crisis.
It has never been clearer that our communities are connected and interdependent. That’s why we are so disturbed to hear of rising incidents of xenophobic harassment against Asian-Americans both here in our hometown of Seattle and across the country. We must not allow xenophobia to divide us at such a critical time.Read More
We’ve all heard of the school to prison pipeline, but there is another insidious structure feeding the prison system: foster care.
On December 5th, I spent the day with men from the Concerned Lifers Organization (CLO) at the Monroe Penitentiary, as they described their journeys toward serving life sentences in prison, which they say felt inevitable. Their ranks are thick with stories of abusive foster homes, committing crimes of survival, and countless social workers—but they also want to use their experience to prevent other young people from experiencing what they did. Their journeys may have been inevitable, they said, but that doesn’t have to be true for young people in state care today.
The State Raised Working Group, a subgroup of CLO comprised of men who experienced foster care prior to serving long prison sentences, works to raise awareness of a system that left them ill-equipped for life beyond state care and that seamlessly fed them into the criminal justice system. Last month they came together to share their findings with Washington state leaders in the foster care and justice communities.Read More