It is with bittersweet emotions and heartfelt support that NCG wishes farewell to NCG's Collaborative Philanthropy Coordinator, Krystle Chipman, as she closes this chapter and begins a new one. Krystle's new chapter includes creating and founding Discover Community Café, a space creating living wage apprenticeships for women overcoming barriers to employment, bringing opportunities for local chefs, and solidifying what it means to be at the table.
It’s hard to summarize the impact Krystle has had on the NCG community and its team in the past 7 years. She’s a true collaborator with a heart that continues to fill others up. This directly influenced the many funder collaboratives she supported including the Funder Network on Trauma & Resilience, California Criminal Justice Funders Group, and End of Life Care. Krystle also managed the Arts Loan Fund for NCG, administering low-interest loan products, and helped launch the newest COVID-19 relief product in partnership with Grants for the Arts and the San Francisco Arts Commission.
“Krystle’s joyful, fun-loving nature and many talents make the world a better place,” said Sarah Frankfurth, NCG’s Director of Regional Programs and Partnerships. “She has sharp insight for the right path to take to solve problems – her positive outlook means she never gives up and always supports others to find solutions. I feel lucky that she was my partner at NCG for so many years, and I’m so proud of her for following her passion to start Discover Community Café!”
Krystle had a lasting impact on NCG’s signature events like the Corporate Philanthropy Institute and the Holiday Party. During these events, she helped create unique opportunities for NCG members with community and joy at the center of every interaction.
“Krystle has one of those beautiful spirits that’s a rare gift to the world. It’s been really inspiring to work with someone with such infectious laughter, inspiring vision, and one of the brightest senses of humor I’ve ever encountered,” said Nicole Giles, NCG’s Strategic Initiatives Coordinator. “It is so exciting to see her use her talents and passion to start Discover Community Café and truly carry forth this vision she has to empower and strengthen our communities. It’s been a blessing to work alongside her at NCG and it’s so bittersweet to say goodbye to her as a co-worker but it’ll be an even bigger blessing to see the impact she’ll make with Discover.”
Please join us in wishing Krystle the best of luck on her new path. You can learn more about Discover Community Café and how to support the vision directly from Krystle, below!
We Belong to Each Other
by Krystle Chipman, Founder, Discover Community Café
“Purpose is where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet” - Frederick Buechner
I’m excited to share that I will be transitioning from my role at NCG to launch Discover Community Café, a social enterprise that will create good jobs with women overcoming barriers to employment, feature a rotating menu championing local chefs & businesses, and a space that ignites connection and honors the greatness in every human.
Growing up in East San Jose, the discrepancy between the rich and the poor was all around me. In a place of such great wealth, it is bewildering how prevalent poverty runs throughout our communities. As an AmeriCorps VISTA in Eastern Kentucky and during graduate school in Little Rock Arkansas, I continued to see how poverty and low wage jobs block people from building the life they desire, inhibited by the constant strain of just meeting their most basic needs.
In graduate school, I had the privilege to complete my Capstone project at So All May Eat (SAME) Café, in Denver, Colorado. Running on a “Pay what you can” business model and giving guests an option to volunteer in operating the café, I was captivated by the concept of a café being used as a vehicle for community development. This café was a beautiful picture of community philanthropy, with so many different people under the same roof, contributing their time, skill, and resources.
Similarly, I was drawn to NCG because of the role it plays as a convener, bringing philanthropy, nonprofits, businesses, and government together to learn and act together. In the last seven years, I’ve seen the challenges, but also the beautiful and powerful outcomes that come through cross-sector collaboration and community.
In taking this next step, I’m driven by this deep conviction that we belong to each other and if one person or group suffers, we all do. I firmly believe that we humans are interconnected, the choices we make every day matter, and the only way we will truly make an impact and break cycles of generational poverty is by working together.
Discover’s vision is to build an inclusive local economy in community with the following north stars:
1. Create transformative jobs for women overcoming barriers to employment, providing space to discover and pursue dreams, training in running all aspects of the café, wrap around services, and an opportunity to become an owner of the café. Learn more >
2. Champion local businesses, food entrepreneurs, and creatives by sourcing their products and services both inside and outside of the kitchen. The café will feature one to two local chefs every six months, providing a platform to test out menus, grow their following, and provide a culinary adventure for guests as they discover local chefs through the rotating menu. Learn More >
3. Center Community by creating a space that sparks connection and builds relationships between neighbors and place through hosting community events and programs. Learn More >
Discover will be more than a café, it will leverage the power of food and community to create a space for healing and relationship building between apprentices, featured chefs, and café patrons, honoring what each person brings to the table.
I am so grateful for my time at NCG, working with an amazing and fun team, alongside a talented and passionate membership base, doing work that will impact generations to come. I have grown in my knowledge of systems change and root causes of inequalities, learned a thing or two about funder collaboratives, and most importantly I’ve built a community that has shaped, inspired, and prepared me to take this next step.
If you have connections in West Oakland or would like to connect further, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can stay up to date as the vision for Discover unfolds by signing up for the newsletter and you can learn more about how to support Discover here. I'm excited to go on this adventure with you!