Q&A with the East Bay Community Foundation

EBCF-logoThe East Bay Community Foundation has been bringing together philanthropists and non-profit organizations since 1928. We thought you might like to know a bit more about the foundation, so we posed some questions on your behalf.

What is the mission and vision of the East Bay Community Foundation?
Our mission is to be the organization of choice for philanthropy in the East Bay through leadership in leveraging all assets in our communities to speed the transformation of low-income, disadvantaged, impoverished, underserved and underrepresented people.

Our vision is to broker solutions to the East Bay’s most pressing problems, achieving measurable transformation or significant change in our communities.  We strive to be a vital resource of intelligence on the East Bay; to provide our own leadership for change and to help develop leadership capabilities among organizations working for similar change; to connect the needs of the East Bay to the interests and resources of our donors, our supporters, and of organizations working for change in our region; and to ensure our donors and supporters represent the diverse communities of the East Bay.

How is the current economic climate impacting the Foundation, its fundraising and grantmaking?

It provides a temporary but serious challenge to all three. As a result of difficult economic times, everyone is tightening their belts.  We have not decreased our grantmaking targets and we hope we aren’t compelled to in the future.  This is a time for people and organizations to step up, not step back.  

What percentage of your donors are people of color?

Many communities of color have a long heritage of charitable giving.  And we know from data that people of color, women, and younger people are involved in philanthropy in increasing numbers.  However, we don’t collect data on the ethnicity of our donors.

What percentage of Foundation grants go to organizations that serve communities of color?

100% of the grants over which we have complete discretion serve communities of color.
 
What advice do you have for staff and board members of local non-profits?

During these difficult times, find a local non-profit that has the same mission as you do or has a very similar one.  Partner with them or if necessary consider even merging with them.  This can be a way to reduce expenses and create potentially more effective service delivery systems.  That’s a tough message, but, many non-profits are facing unprecedented revenue short falls.  By combining forces with other organizations, many non-profits may be able to sustain critical services in our communities.

Learn more by visiting the East Bay Community Foundation online at www.ebcf.org

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