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Regional Vibrancy and Sustainability

Making this a place we can all call home. 

Northern California is diverse and beautiful, with a rich cultural history and commitment to social justice. We are called upon to preserve it through shared effort. Today, the region’s economic boom is deepening income disparities and displacing the very people who form the backbone of the services and cultural building blocks for safe, thriving communities.

In addition, our nonprofit and arts institutions are themselves experiencing record displacement, further eroding the vibrant character and culture that have been the legacy of our region for generations.

Preservation of our environment and the beauty of our surroundings, as well as the mitigation of climate change, are also central to the vibrancy of our region.

Defining our Terms

Regional Vibrancy. The unique and distinct character that defines Northern California: its natural beauty, human diversity, artistic and cultural richness, innovative, entrepreneurial and creative economic engine, and deep legacy of social justice. Our "heartbeat," if you will. 

Sustainability. Strengthening and preserving our region's vital workforce, diverse and rich populations, nonprofit, nonprofit infrastructure, artistic and cultural communities and institutions, and natural environment. 


Thursday, February 18, 2021 - 12:00pm

Data shows nearly two in three of us struggle with Imposter Syndrome, the feeling that one is not cut out for the work one is doing or aspires to do, combined with a fear of being discovered as a fraud.

Thursday, February 4, 2021 - 1:00pm

We’re living longer than ever before, and at some point, we will all need care from a family or professional caregiver. Today, nearly 42 million Americans provide unpaid care to an older person—often a family member—while the direct care workforce comprises about 4.5 million workers.

Monday, January 25, 2021 - 10:30am

Since coming to office, Governor Gavin Newsom has made bold investments in California's children- from $1.8 billion in early childhood to a comprehensive paid family leave policy.


Though there have been significant scientific advances to help us better understand how adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and trauma are contributing factors towards negative health outcomes later in life, there remains little guidance on how to address these issues within the context of cross-sector philanthropic settings. 

On July 16th, the Funder Network on Trauma & Resilience hosted a webinar that showcased Trauma-Informed Philanthropy, a two volume guide from the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, the Thomas Scattergood Behavioral Health Foundation, and Philanthropy Network of Greater Philadelphia.  Panelists from the Pennsylvania Humanities Council and Health Federation of Philadelphia explored the impact of trauma-informed philanthropy on both internal organizational culture and cross-sector collaboration, and shared lessons for Bay Area funders interested in this work.

Rewind Back to 2006. A report from the Irvine Foundation on Foundation Giving in California found that Solano County received substantially fewer foundation dollars compared to eight other Bay Area counties.

Philanthropy can serve as a trusted resource for actionable communications that lead with empathy and support grantees to prevent the spread of disease, preserve well-being, maintain social cohesion, and respond to economic hardship.

Since implementation of the ACA, California's uninsured rate has dropped by half. Still, nearly 3 million remain uninsured, and there could be big changes in coverage ahead with Donald Trump's election. Read more at California Health Care Foundation's Almanac.  

Our nation’s philanthropic and nonprofit leaders, in cooperation with first-responders and government personnel, have amassed a wealth of knowledge on disaster response and recovery. These are some of the key lessons learned by the contributors to The Disaster Playbook.  


Thursday, January 14, 2021

As we look ahead in 2021, the new administration at the White House is staffing up to address four key priorities: COVID-19, economic recovery, racial equity and climate change. While we continue to bring together funders and other sectors to address the continuing effects of compounding crises – COVID-19, wildfires, and racial inequities, we invite you to explore ways to invest your relational, financial, and political capital to tackle the root causes of disasters in the coming years and empower communities of color so they are not bearing more than their share of the burden. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Well, it didn’t take long for 2021 to remind us that the journey back from the edge of an abyss will not be a gentle one. Last Wednesday showed us we will need to advance racial equity to achieve a functioning democracy. And if democracy fails, we cannot sustain racial equity. The insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th undermines both.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

In a year of memorable moments, I keep coming back to a conversation I had with my cousin Harold that is shaping my entry into 2021. Harold lives in Chicago and is an ardent student of history, particularly in the pursuit of racial justice. His observations often help me refine my own thinking.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

SAN FRANCISCO -- Today a group of Northern California foundations launched the Youth Power Fund, which supports nonprofits that organize young people in the region and advocate for social change. In the current political climate in our nation, the fund recognizes that this is a critical time to invest in the power of youth organizing.

Thursday, November 12, 2020

What role can philanthropy now play to restore some guardrails and resource these movements? We offer some reflections on the current moment as well as a few recommendations to guide social justice, human rights, and democracy funders.