We hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe during these unprecedented times. As each day brings new information regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, we at RVC are staying diligent to keep up to date on public health recommendations. Our priority is for the safety of our RVC partner organizations, our staff, and all of our communities.
We also want to recognize the amazing work that our partner organizations are doing, both in regards to helping communities that are in need during this pandemic and diligently continuing to support and fight for underserved communities, so make sure to read on about their contributions. And stay up to date by checking out our latest blogs to see what’s been happening at RVC.
Abesha Shiferaw leaves RVC
Abesha Shiferaw, our Director of Fellowships, departed RVC last month after a wonderful five years with RVC. She joined City of Seattle as its Civic Engagement and Leadership Development Lead.
Abesha has been pivotal in the growth of RVC, having been with our organization since its infancy. She spearheaded and oversaw our original fellowship and leadership development program and ushered it through transitions, including its expansion into two programs (the Community Impact Fellowship and the Green Pathways Fellowship).
About RVC, Abesha stated, “I leave proud of the work we’ve done so far and the people that show up every day. … Changing the oppressive realities we live in is the hardest work we can do and yet doing it for our communities is a privilege. And doing it with integrity and centering my people has been trying and an honor.”
Abesha will always be a part of the RVC family, and we look forward to seeing the impact she will continue to make for communities of color. Congrats on your new position and good luck, Abesha!
Meet RVC’s newest team members!
Say hi to Hana Jang! Hana is our new Grant Strategist!
Prior to joining RVC, Hana worked at KCSC developing, managing, and securing funding for programs to meet the needs of the Korean American community throughout western Washington. Hana earned her Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Minnesota and her master’s degree in social work from the University of Washington.
In her free time, Hana contemplates what financial capacity-building education and opportunities could look like for young women of color, fawns over the neighborhood dogs, and enjoys gathering over hearty cheese plates with her friends and loved ones.
Say hi to Fabiola Arvizu! Fabiola is our new Operations Manager!
Fabiola is a Virgo sun raised in occupied Duwamish lands, Seattle. Some of the work she is most proud of has been around student organizing, youth leadership, and working with young families in the area. She joins RVC with a commitment to operational work and making it accessible to all folks and grassroot organizations.
When she isn’t working, Fabiola enjoys playing Animal Crossing, watching bad reality tv, eating thai food, and practicing karaoke songs she will probably never sing in public.
We hope you all stay safe out there
We know everyone is concerned about the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) here in Washington state right now. We know that there is an inclination in our sector to push through even when we don’t feel well. We urge everyone to be extra judicious and to exercise caution during this time. We’ve posted some recommendations from King County Public Health and the CDC on how to slow the spread of germs. We’re also compiling a list of resources for our partners and communities and will post on our website and social media soon. Please follow us to keep up-to-date.
RVC Partner Updates
RVC strengthens the power of communities of color in order to create a more equitable society through capacity-building, leadership development, and operations support. We accomplish this through our core programs and services as well as through leading partnerships with community members and organizations of color. These members and organizations provide support services tailored to the strengths and needs of the communities they serve.
Here are this month’s highlights of some of our partners’ amazing work.
WA-BLOC partners with local businesses to feed students in Rainier Beach community
WA-BLOC, RVC’s partner organization that empowers academic, creative, community-connected lifelong leaders through academic and place-based leadership development, recently partnered with FEEST Seattle to offer free lunches for students in the Rainier Beach community. Kicking off on March 13, WA-BLOC is working with local restaurants to serve meals on Tuesdays and Thursdays for students while schools remain closed, due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
WA-BLOC asks to not come if you are over 60, you have underlying health conditions, or you or anyone in your household has any sick symptoms. There will be several sanitation stations and they recommend 6 feet of social distance. There will be to-go food boxes and participants will not be allowed to stay and eat to ensure that there are no more than 50 people at all times. For more information, check out their Facebook page for updates.
CIN distributes food and clean water to immigrants and refugees
Congolese Integration Network (CIN), a partner organization of RVC that supports Congolese immigrants integrate into American society by providing access to critical resources in the King County area, is partnering with Northwest Food Harvest to distribute food and clean water to vulnerable refugees and immigrants in Washington state. This is in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Per CIN’s Facebook page, if you are a refugee or an immigrant in need of food and clean water, call or text CIN at 253-495-3556 or 541-261-9897.
Rainier Beach Action Coalition announces the completion of “The Reclaimed” project
Rainier Beach Action Coalition (RBAC), a partner organization of RVC that builds community capacity to successfully address critical issues and enhance the quality of life in the Rainier Beach neighborhood, recently posted pictures of “The Reclaimed” project, which brought together Seattle City Light, Seattle Department of Transportation, Seattle-King County Public Health, and the residents of Rainier Beach, specifically the young people, to enhance the quality of life in Rainier Beach.
The specific site chosen was one needing repurposing, and reclaiming it as a major thoroughfare for Rainier Beach residents who are using public transit, which includes light rail and bus service. The site, chosen by the youth of the Corner Greeter program, picked a pedestrian pathway to be appealing to the community and RBAC will program the space with daily litter pick up and a weekly garden maintenance, in addition to holding monthly work parties that will be made up of volunteers from the neighborhood. To see the before and after pictures, check out RBAC’s Facebook post.
Powerful Voices accepting board member applications
Powerful Voices, a partner organization of RVC that creates brave spaces with girls* of color (*people who identify as girls or who are socialized as girls) to take charge of their own power as leaders, is currently accepting applications to join its Board of Directors. If elected, board members serve for three years, starting in 2020 and continuing until 2023. With a new roadmap ahead for Powerful Voices, the board is committed to advancing and mobilizing sustainable action on social justice issues that most impact girls.
Per Powerful Voices’ Facebook page, “Being on our board is a special thing. It’s full of individuals with different backgrounds and varied expertise who are making sure that Powerful Voices stays true to itself and its mission. We’d love for you to join us! We are especially looking for folks with financial or project management background. Even if those skills aren’t your jam, we would be honored to have someone who is invested in a better world for girls* of color.” To apply, visit their application page.
Families of Color Seattle welcomes new Executive Director
Families of Color Seattle, RVC’s partner organization that works to build a strong community by supporting families of color through equitable parenting programs, resource-sharing, and fostering meaningful connections, recently announced that they have hired Christine Tang as its new Executive Director. Families of Color started their leadership transition when founding Executive Director Amy Pak departed in October 2019.
On their website, written by Board President Michele Domingo, she states, “On behalf of the Board of Directors, we are so pleased to announce that we have hired Christine Tang as the new Executive Director of Families of Color Seattle. After an open search and deliberation, it was clear that we only needed to look inward to find our new leader. Christine was our Director of Programs and Strategy and will officially take on her new role as Executive Director on March 1. Please join us in welcoming her with a big hug and open arms!”
To read the rest of Michele’s message and to learn more about Christine, check it out here! Congrats, Christine!
Be a Changemaker
RVC Changemakers are folks who believe that leadership development and capacity building in communities of color should be spearheaded by the individuals working within these communities. By committing to giving $80 or more a month, you will be making a pivotal impact in communities of color in the Greater Seattle area.
Changemakers will get a shoutout in our annual report, be invited to our special events, be invited to further engage in other ways, such as through volunteering, lunch and learns, or maybe even mentoring. Our Changemakers will also just be lavished with so much appreciation for their commitment to social justice at the grassroots level!
Job Opportunities In Our Network
Big Brothers Big Sisters Puget Sound is hiring for multiple positions.
Bike Works is hiring for multiple positions.
Casa Latina is hiring a Director of Development.
Children’s Alliance is hiring an Executive Director
Forterra is hiring a Director Community Development.
Powerful Voices is hiring for multiple positions.
Rainier Beach Action Coalition is hiring for multiple positions.
Solid Ground is hiring for multiple positions.
Stolte Family Foundation is hiring an Education Program Officer.
United Way of King County is hiring for multiple positions.
Voices of Tomorrow is hiring for multiple positions.
Washington Nonprofits is hiring a Director of Policy and Communications.
Washington Trails Association is hiring a Development Director.
Community Events & Important Dates
April 6 – April 22: Online Soulful Flow Yoga with Jasmine RaShae
April 25: Stop Genocide, Stop Ebola, Public Awareness
April 25 – May 2: SMP 20th Anniversary Virtual Fundraiser
RVC Stuff To Read
RVC Fellow has renewed sense to build and connect communities through music education after enduring hardship, written by RVC
Reflections on dismantling racism in Seattle Works, a nonprofit organization, written by Ben Reuler, Executive Director of Seattle Works
Update! RVC is in the middle of a leadership transition AND an organizational transition, written by Ananda Valenzuela, Interim Executive Director of RVC
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!f you have job postings or events that you would like mentioned in our newsletter, please email the details to Saida. We do our best to fit everything in, but we may not always be able to.