View a short video featuring women and girls in central Indiana who have overcome barriers and are achieving success, thanks to your interest and support.
I decided to take a closer look at Concord Neighborhood Center. Women’s Fund has provided significant funds to this organization for a number of years – from computer training for girls to childcare for women; assistance with basic needs to youth development.
Family Service is changing it's name - to Families First. Their services to provide affordable, professional support services to central Indiana families.
For the past 28 years, Exodus Refugee Immigration has welcomed the brave women, men and children who have escaped tragic situations and found a new home in our community. Women's Fund granted them $15,000 this year for programs, so I wanted to learn more.
Volunteers from Women's Fund organized a special Christmas party for moms participating in the Family Preservation program at the Indiana Women's Prison. The day was joyful, yet emotional - both for the moms and the volunteers.
In the midst of the holiday season, now is the time to think about how you can teach your children about giving. Read more for some simple steps.
Women’s Fund may not be the first organization that comes to mind when thinking about family volunteering, but in fact, they offer two philanthropy education programs that instill that same belief of giving back. The cool thing is their philanthropy education programs extend beyond a day or week of volunteering together, but focus on lifelong giving.
This month is National Family Caregivers Month, which got me thinking about the roles of traditional caregivers.
What did participants learn at Power of Girls? How were they impacted? So many of the "take aways" from this program go well beyond the day of the event...
Today is Election Day, a day when many Americans exercise their right to vote. It's hard to imagine that a mere 91 years ago women could not vote. In 1920, the 19th Amendment passed and this changed, paving the way for other big changes to the status of women.
With the help of the bold and transformative Women's Fund grant, Business Ownership Initiative has grown into a big, broad organization, offering one on one business counseling services, planning, and workshops to help people with any of their small business educational and support needs.
Women, War & Peace, a 5-part PBS series, starts October 11th. Read why you will not want to miss out on watching it!
Southeast Community Services is a community center providing supports for women and individuals in all places of their lives. I walked away from a site visit amazed.
This week I learned from Women's Fund that they are involved in trying to save a critical program in our community. Women's Fund stepped in after the Julian Center learned the Department of Justice is cutting funding for "The Grants to Encourage Arrests" program – a program credited with having a significant impact on saving lives and keeping women safe.
How did you first learn about managing money? At some point, you probably learned something about the value of money and keeping it safe. Through economic literacy programs at local Girls Inc. chapters, for example, many central Indiana girls are developing money management skills at an early age.
"Poverty Rate Climbs". The headline of an article in today's Indianapolis Star is not surprising, given the economic situation in recent times. The reality of the impact poverty has on individuals, families, and our community is grim. The article reported on 2009 statistics released by the U.S. Census Bureau. The overall poverty rate climbed to 14.3 percent or 43.6 million people in 2009, up from 13.2 percent, or 39.8 million people in 2008. In Indiana specifically, the poverty rate rose from 12.9 percent in 2008 to 16.1 percent in 2009, higher than every neighboring state except Kentucky.
The world is about to reach a population of 7 billion people, which could have big implications for us - particularly for women.
Wishard’s spectrum of care includes serving women through their Women’s and Children’s Services – and that’s the program that has benefited from Women’s Fund. Women’s Fund provided a $10,000 grant to the Wishard Foundation to help provide bereavement support for expectant mothers who experience an unexpected loss, such as a miscarriage, still birth, ectopic pregnancy or newborn death. The grant allowed the Women's and Children's Services at Wishard to provide intensive training for all staff members to increase their ability to provide compassionate and culturally sensitive bereavement.
Do you see yourself as a leader? Many of us are leaders by nature of our work or affiliations. Leadership opportunities occur at many moments each day. Sometimes we take advantage of them, sometimes we don't, and sometimes we exhibit leadership in unexpected ways.
Each time I visit a Women's Fund grantee, I walk away amazed—at the work being accomplished, the challenges faced in our community, and the creativity of staff members to make tight budgets go even further. My visit to Concord Community Center last Tuesday was no exception. I joined Women's Fund Advisory Board, Grants Committee, and OPTIONS Class 10 members to learn about this center's services to families on Indianapolis' Southside, services Women's Fund has supported since 1999, through grants totaling over $107,000. We had the opportunity to spend the afternoon with Niki Girls, director of Concord for about 25 years.
Betsy Biederstedt shares her impressions and thoughts after spending time on Tuesday at the Indiana Women's Prison (IWP). The site visit made such an impact on the women who attended that we have dedicated more blog space on this topic.
A site visit hosted by Women's Fund gives 18 women an inside look at the Indiana Women's Prison.
Census information encourages us to think differently about how we serve women and their families in our community.
How many of you think back to childhood and remember the joy of summer camp? So, as much as I LOVE summer camp, I have to say I was astounded to learn about summer day camp at the Indiana Women's Prison (IWP).
34 North: the name sounded like a trendy restaurant or condo complex when I first heard it. It's actually the name of a new apartment complex on Meridian Street, a transitional housing facility for The Julian Center. This facility provides a safe and supportive housing community for domestic violence victims as they re-establish themselves and is an affordable housing option for community members.
Family leave is a hotly debated topic, and even moreso in recent months with statements made by prominent executive mothers. Creating and growing policies that work for more families and employers is critical and needs additional attention.
Women's Fund has long supported the Family Preservation Program at the Indiana Women's Prison (IWP) because we believe a woman is more likely to live a lawful life and not re-offend if she has the tools necessary to be a good mother. So what does this mean?
Can you imagine being in prison, close to being released, and having to figure out how to pick up the pieces and restart your life when you return home? I can't. As if the challenges around being in prison are not great enough, it is even more difficult to rejoin society as a productive citizen, free of the barriers and issues an offender had when entering the system.
The front page of today's Indianapolis Star tells a story we are, unfortunately, familiar with at Women's Fund. In the past eight years, the number of women incarcerated in Indiana has risen 61%.
The domestic violence statistics continue to be staggering. The only thing new to me lately is the attention the most recent violence has received in the media. Unfortunately, domestic violence occurs every day all across this city; families of every socio-economic background experience violence in their homes. Why?
I was intrigued to learn about the United Nation's vote on Friday to establish UN Women. The goals of this entity are to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women. I'm truly excited about a new international platform to address issues impacting women, and I hope this effort is successful in accomplishing its goals.
Julie Koegel shares reflections after a recent site visit to Women's Fund Grantee Coburn Place.
As an OPTIONS alumnae, and a donor to Women’s Fund, I’m committed to learning more about where my dollars are going – and sharing with readers what I learn. This time, I decided to explore the community centers that Women’s Fund has funded, including Concord, Hawthorne and John H. Boner Community Centers. Each has received operational support from Women’s Fund so I was interested in learning what the centers do for their communities.
Caregiving is more than an issue Women's Fund focuses on, it is an issue impacting all of us in one way or another. Many of us are responsible for the care of children, or are faced with elder care issues. The related statistics are striking. Following are some facts about caregiving, which we have uncovered in our research publication, Still on Shaky Ground 2006:
Imagine you are a parent, miles away from your children and family members with no way to see them unless someone brings them to you. This is a reality for many in the justice system; the impact of this separation can be devastating to a family and, in particular, to developing bonds between parents and children. Use What You've Got Prison Ministry's mission is to provide transportation for prison visitation while promoting family wellness through education, supportive resources, and spiritual enhancement. They drove a total of 24,586 miles last year, shuttling family members to sixteen correctional facilities spread throughout the state.
Today I was struck by my good fortune of having a strong network – particularly in terms of quality daycare, a good family who helps with the kids and the ability to tap into the great community resources available for working moms. I’m currently facing two situations that are not uncommon to working moms – a sick kid and planning for summer care. Both raise the question of balancing work and family responsibilities.
Contributed by Raquel Richardson, Principal, Silver Square :: Marketing + Design. We know the sun will come up tomorrow. We know the leaves turn colors in the fall. We know the earth is round. We know the truth – until we don’t. Our world has a funny way of keeping us off balance and adding in those little idiosyncrasies that make us pause and take note, challenging what we know.
Give a few kids a video camera and see how they can inspire others. That's just what Women's Fund of Central Indiana did during their GO Family Philanthropy Day. Their creativity, passion and honesty are heartwarming, touching and motivating.
Last Saturday, about 60 people, including 16 families, gathered for 2010 GO Family Philanthropy Day at the Indianapolis Art Center. This event provided a meaningful and enriching philanthropy education experience to parents whose children are involved in GO: Give Back.
Alison Schumacher, OPTIONS Alumnae member, shares her perspective on a recent site visit to Hawthorne Community Center, serving Indianapolis' westside residents.
Becca Hanson, OPTIONS 13 class member and Owner, 14 Districts, reflects on a recent site visit to Indiana Women's Prison. Read what surprised her and learn something new about incarcerated women.
As a mother, past half marathoner, and concerned citizen, Abigail shares her thoughts on the tragedy that struck the city of Boston yesterday.
Last week I attended a kick-off event for Child Abuse Prevention Month, hosted in partnership by Prevent Child Abuse America, Prevent Child Abuse Indiana and The Villages. Throughout the event, child advocates spoke about the importance of child abuse prevention and the devastating cycle of domestic violence. Statistics shared were stark. Each year, more than 20,000 Hoosier children are abused and neglected – that equates to 56 children being harmed every day and one child each week losing his or her young life to child abuse.
Muhammad Yunus is a man who had a vision of lifting people out of poverty through their own hard work and microloans. "To Catch a Dollar" shares the story of just a few women who have benefited from microloans and support from Grameen America.
Celebrate National Nutrition Month. How are you living healthfully through balanced nutrition?
March is Women's History Month, a time to celebrate women's contributions to history, culture, and society. It's only fitting to pay tribute, as we have through our blog recently, to women such as the WWII WASPs and female black civil rights workers, in honor of their tireless efforts to provide a foundation for women's success today.
Did you know: In central Indiana there are only 24 licensed childcare spots for every 100 children under the age of six whose caregivers work outside the home? Women's Fund has awarded $830,000 to address caregiving challenges in central Indiana, funding organizations like Day Nursery Association of Greater Indianapolis.
Crystal Livers-Powers, Community Volunteer and Women's Fund Communications Advisory Committee member, shares her perspective on a recent site visit to Coburn Place Safe Haven. Learn how she connected her mother's advice to her experience on the visit.
How often do you and your mom or you and your daughter get together with the explicit purpose of laughing, poking fun at each other, and seriously discussing issues of which your dad, husband, or brother have absolutely no clue?
Children whose parents have been incarcerated are seven times more likely to be re-incarcerated themselves. Women's Fund has provided support to programs focused on strengthening family ties at the Indiana Women's Prison since 1999.
Babies Behind Bars is a two-part series that airs on TLC this week. The program highlights the Wee Ones Program and the work the Indiana Women's Prison is doing to help inmates bond with their babies. Interesting program; really interesting show to watch.
February marks Black History Month, a time dedicated to reflect on the contributions made by women, men, and children in black history.
Women's Fund is grateful for the service of a team of community leaders who guide our work to improve the lives of women and girls in central Indiana—our Advisory Board. Thanks to 2008 - 2009 chair, Julie Davis, for her outstanding service to Women's Fund in this role. We would also like to welcome new leadership to our Advisory Board.
Do nonprofits make resolutions? Does Women's Fund? One writer identifies four New Year's Resolutions all nonprofits should make in 2011. Find out what they are and how Women's Fund may relate to them.