July 2016

Message from the Executive Director

Fair Chance Produces Results

 According to Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO), foundations use a  wide variety of approaches to build capacity* of their grantees -- mostly  short-term and project-specific. Interestingly, the research to assess the  effectiveness of these investments in capacity building has been limited.

 The Fair Chance capacity building model is fundamentally different.  We  provide comprehensive, tailored, and measurable organizational  transformation in eight critical competency areas of nonprofit management.  Because Fair Chance understands that change takes time, we “partner” with the nonprofits we select for up to two years, and then continue to provide support through our alumni network.

And, there is promising evidence that our unique approach is an accelerator for improving nonprofit performance and impact. Several years ago we developed tools to measure our results and since then have been collecting regular performance data. Over the past several months we have been analyzing our 2015 post-partnership assessment and alumni survey data and preparing our annual report. We are pleased to present our 2015 annual report and the findings with this newsletter. Highlights from the report include:

Our hypothesis is that the components of Fair Chance’s unique partnership program, taken together, lead to better nonprofit performance and stronger communities. With data from our soon-to-be launched pilot Impact Academy, we aim to link our impact to the outcomes for the children and youth our partners serve as well. We will continue to collect internal data to build our case as well as raise the support to acquire external validation. We encourage you to review our 2015 annual report and join us as we seek to strengthen more local nonprofits and leaders in DC’s most challenged communities and put more children and youth on a pathway out of poverty.

Yours in service,

Gretchen Van der Veer, PhD


*According to the Foundation Center, capacity building is a broad term that encompasses "actions that improve nonprofit effectiveness", in terms of organizational and financial stability, program quality, and growth.*

What's New

District of Learning

In collaboration with District of Learning initiative of Fair Chance, we were honored to join White House Staff and key friends from DC Government on National Summer Learning Day to highlight the importance of strong summer programs for youth across our city and nation. It was great to connect with a number of Fair Chance partners participating as host sites on this fun and informative day. Thanks to Rachel Callahan and everyone at Common Good City Farm in Ledroit Park; Jeffery Tribble MusicianShip at their Wilson High School site; and Mariama Davis of Y.O.U.R. Community Center for sharing and celebrating with us!

Mark Your Calendar
July 27 - August 1
Young Ladies of Tomorrow
Moving Sale

August 6
Words Beats & Life Inc.
Fine Lines Paint Jam - Roll Down, Get Down

August 17
Free Minds Book Club
On the Same Page: Write Night

August 27th & 28th
Volunteer Training

September 6
Words Beats & Life Inc.

WBL Academy Beginning

September 30 - October 2
National Kids Yoga Conference

November 16 - 18
Independent Sector
Independent Sector Annual Conference 2016
"New Frontiers"

Partner Highlights

A City Kids participant wrote an article titled, "Get Out: Mountain Medicine, A young urban dweller confronts her fears at high altitude."  Click here to check it out.

The Grassroot Project has welcomed two new Global Health Corps Fellows, who will be serving as Program Managers for the coming year, and a new Executive Director, Marie Rudolph. Grassroots is also currently revising and expanding their curriculum to cover sexual health, healthy relationships, and decision making, in addition to the HIV/AIDS prevention focus from their current curriculum. 
This statement and reflection was given by One Common Unity's co-founder and executive director - Hawah Kasat. He recorded this approximately 30 days after the massacre and shooting in #Orlando, and just days after Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were both killed by police officers. In the throes of a national debate on racism, gun violence, and police brutality, Hawah offers some simple guidance and a proactive solution on how to transform our culture from violent to compassionate. Click here to view the clip.
This summer, DC arts educators Young Playwrights' Theater launched the Lincoln Heights Arts Camp, a free multi-arts camp for young people ages 13-18. Guided by local artists, campers - including YPT alumna Aayanna Collier - are exploring the "faces and places" of Northeast DC through photography, playwriting, sound design and visual art. Their work will culminate in a free community performance on August 1! Space is still available at the Lincoln Heights Arts Camp - visit YPT's website for more information.
Words Beats & Life concluded Youth Speaks’ Brave New Voices with #PhifeIsLiving - an all day festival finale featuring free health testing, live performances, over 20 local organizations, 3 new pieces of public art including a Muhammad Ali mural, barbecue grilled by the Metro Police Department, and more. This was their biggest festival ever!

What We're Reading

This Week in Philanthropy (The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s weekly newsletter), the July 12, 2016 issue has an opinion piece on the sector’s role in bringing communities together and the imperative for all nonprofits to “take a stand against racial division and violence.”

Thank You! 

Many thanks to the leaders and staff of Fair Chance Partners: Common Good City Farm, The MusicianShip, and Y.O.U.R. Community Center for participating in National Summer Learning Day!

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