Happy new year, friends! 2020 is behind us, thank goodness. 2021 is ours to shape. We look forward to continuing this collective work with you as we make 2021 another year of advocacy and solidarity.
Since the start of the current pandemic, our partners have been quick to adapt to their communities’ shifting needs. And we’ve been doing our best to share tools and resources to help navigate these uncertain times. Here are some highlights of our recent successes:
- In December, we used our unexpected budget surplus to provide a $2000 Community Care Investment to each of our staff, including our Operations Support partners. More on this later.
- Community Impact and Green Pathways Fellows completed the first year of their fellowship–Join us for the next Turn up for Transformation!
- We published an article on Transformative Capacity Building in the Stanford Social Innovation Review and put our words into action through the training and workshops we provided in support of our partners as they pivoted in response to COVID-19. (If you missed the recent webinar presentation and conversation on transformational capacity building featuring the authors of the article, check out the webinar recording).
In this community update, we want to share our next fellows’ celebration event: Turn Up for Transformation! See below for event details and to get to know the fellows more.
We have a couple of other RVC updates, including a leadership transition update from our wonderful Interim Ananda Valenzuela. Read it below. And as always, we have insightful updates from our partner organizations.
Turn up for Transformation With Us!
Four 2019-2021 RVC Fellows will share insights into their leadership journey!
Join us for the next Turn-up featuring Green Pathways and Community Impact Fellows. The fellows will offer wisdom they’ve gained through their work and insights into their leadership journey.
RVC’s Turn up for Transformation events are one of the ways we celebrate the fellows’ leadership.
Register today at the button below.
Get to know the Fellow Panelists
Green Pathways Fellowship
Green Pathways is a partnership between RVC and Got Green, a South Seattle-based grassroots organization that promotes environmental, racial, and economic justice and is led by people of color and low-income folks.
The Partnership creates opportunities for future leaders of color in the green sector while providing them with a living wage, entry-level positions in the environmental justice movement.
It’s now been a year since our inaugural Green Pathways cohort started. Read the Green Pathways Fall 2020 Update to learn about what’s been successful, what lessons we’re learning, and where we’re going from here.
Shaylea Pilarski is Community Organizer Fellow at Got Green and a first-time mother! Before the fellowship, she worked with the Duwamish Valley Youth Corps and other youth leadership development organizations. Through the Green Pathways Fellowship and her other community spaces, Shaylea found her passion for nonprofits.
Shaylea strives to use her extensive experience in youth leadership and environmental justice to serve youth in our communities better.
Cly Samson is the Community Agriculture Engagement Fellow at King Conservation District. Through conservation, education, and responsible stewardship, King Conservation District promotes sustainable uses of natural resources.
Cly comes from a family lineage of fishers and farmers from a small province in the Philippines. She believes that access to healthy food is a human right, not a privilege.
Community Impact Fellowship
RVC’s Community Impact Fellowship Program trains leaders of color and places them in a two-year fellowship at grassroots organizations led by communities of color, building the next generation of nonprofit leaders while increasing resources going to these organizations.
The Community Impact Fellowship is RVC’s oldest program and a cornerstone of our #strongcommunities #strongleaders motto!
Uyen Vu is the Operations and Capacity Building Manager at Powerful Voices, an RVC partner organization that creates equitable spaces for girls* of color in Seattle (*people who identify or are socialized as girls).
Uyen is passionate about developing leaders of color and fostering collaborative relationships. Uyen attributes her knowledge and experiences to inspirational female mentors’ influences and hopes to pay it forward by diligently supporting Powerful Voices.
Ari Lozano is a Program and Development Manager at AGE UP, RVC Operations Support Partner Organization.
Born and raised in the Seattle area, Ari enjoys leading and giving back in the community she grew up in. At AGE UP, Ari works with young people based in her community, runs workshops and programming based on various social justice issues, and plays and coaches her favorite sport, ultimate.
Join us at Turn up for Transformation to learn more about these emerging leaders and their work.
On community Care to Counter Nonprofit Industrial Complex
RVC leaders work hard to steward the resources that are entrusted to us. In December, our team’s cautious and thoughtful spending resulted in an unexpected budget surplus. Read about the Unexpected Budget Surplus Creates Opportunity to Better Serve Our People announcement on our website.
This presented us with a great opportunity to demonstrate what we always ask funders: to invest in our community. Instead of hoarding the surplus budget, we distributed it among our staff, including our Operations Support Partner Organizations’ staff. Given the lack of meaningful government financial support during these difficult times, we are glad we can directly distribute the unexpected funds among communities most impacted by the ongoing pandemic.
A lot of our staff, like many in our community, are going through tremendous changes during this season– three of our staff have had to move, one has become a primary caretaker for a loved one, several staff members have become new parents, and so much more.Laura Wright, Operations and Finance Director at RVC Partner Organization Washington Building Leaders of Change (WA-BLOC)
We are getting a lot of positive reactions to this. Here is one from our founder and former ED Vu Le. We are proud to continue the awesome work that Vu started at RVC.
RVC had a budget surplus and, instead of hoarding it, gave out $2,000 each to 100 team members in its community alliance. My former org, leading by example. Meanwhile, funders, who have way more money, continue to debate minimum payout rates.Vu Le, Nonprofit AF
RVC Leadership Transition Update!
Wondering about RVC’s leadership transition? Read the recent article by our Interim Executive Director, Ananda Valenzuela: How do you build a leaderful organization? (With an update on RVC’s leadership transition).
RVC Fellows & Partner Updates
RVC is powered by our partners and fellows, who tailor their work to the strengths and needs of the communities they serve. Every month, we highlight their amazing work.
RVC Operations Partner RIZP & Community Partners Were Highlighted in the Media
RVC Operations Support Partner Renton Innovation Zone Partnership (RIZP) is a partnership between the Renton School District and its surrounding communities to improve children’s well-being and academic performance. The partnership’s mission is centered around basic needs, community and family engagement, and early learning.
A recent Kiro 7 piece on youth of color and the criminal justice system highlights RIZP and other partner organizations’ work! We are grateful to have organizations like RIZP and its partners lead the way to create new experiences and narratives for our young people! Watch the video: Study found poor treatment by police can have a lifelong impact on middle school kids
Flo Sum & Chevon Powell Presented at UW Nature and Health Speaks Series: Sustainable Partnerships with BIPOC Communities
RVC Fellow alum and current Green Pathways Program Manager Flo Sum joined Chevon Powell, founder of Golden Bricks Events (GBE), for a workshop on sustainable Partnerships with BIPOC Communities. The workshop was a part of the UW Nature and Health Speaks series.
The greatest joy of any successful partnership is the relationships you get to build with one another. A partnership is more than the project or outcome you set out together. But the process of building community with people who have similar visions of the world that BIPOC communities deserve. Chevon and I’ve known each other for years and what delights me the most is to see her work blossom with all the challenges and lessons along the way.Flo Sum, RVC Green Pathways Fellowship Program Manager
Learn more about and support Chevon’s work on their Instagram.
Thanks to UW Nature & Health for hosting!
Miss the workshop? No worries, watch the recording below: https://natureandhealth.uw.edu/news-and-events/nature-and-health-speaks/
Be a Changemaker
By committing to The Champions to Changemakers Annual Fund, you will be making a pivotal impact in communities of color in the Greater Seattle area.
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. RVC Changemakers believe in building a collective of strong voices — voices that may not always be in agreement, but ones that are always honored, heard and respected. RVC Changemakers push for social change on the ground level, for those who need and deserve it most.
The Champions to Changemakers Annual Fund makes a huge difference, it supports:
- Training and strategic planning sessions for grassroots nonprofits
- Lunch-and-Learns to help RVC’s Community Impact and Green Pathways Fellows strengthen their leadership skills
- Community Connections lunches, where RVC’s community-based partners meet with our major donors to foster more cross-sector collaboration.
You may donate by credit or debit card, or check by mailing it directly to us. For other donation options, please email us at [email protected].
Job Opportunities In Our Network
- RVC is hiring a Development Associate
- Skyway Coalition is hiring for a Coalition Manager
- The Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence is hiring for multiple positions
- Rainier Beach Action Coalition is hiring for multiple positions
- WA-BLOC is hiring for a Servant Leader Educator
- Washington Nonprofits is hiring for a Communications Manager
- Philanthropy Northwest is hiring for multiple positions
- Resource Generation is hiring for multiple positions
- Literacy Sources is hiring a Development Manager
- Casa Latina is hiring for multiple positions
- Solid Ground is hiring for multiple positions.
- United Way of King County is hiring for multiple positions.
Community Resources & Events
- King County Public Health COVID19 Vaccine Information
- Free COVID-19 testing is available in King County regardless of immigration status. Find a testing site near you.
- iPhone & Android COVID alerts are now active in WA State! Read The Seattle Times article with instructions and more information about the COVID exposure notifications: WA Notify system goes live with COVID exposure notifications for iPhone and Android users in Washington state
- United Way of King County, Food Lifeline, the City of Seattle, and Metro Access are offering home delivery of emergency food boxes across Seattle, North King County, and East King County during COVID-19. To order a food box, fill out the form at the link above, or call Toll-Free at 833-540-0800, Mondays to Fridays from 11 am-4 pm.
- Communities Rise is offering COVID-19 Small Business and Nonprofit Legal Clinic. Register at the link above.
RVC Stuff To Read
How do you build leaderful organizations: An RVC Leadership Transition Update, written by Ananda Valenzuela, RVC Interim Executive Director
Transformational Capacity Building, (SSIR article) written by April Nishimura et al. (2020)
Community Care During the Pandemic: We Are in This Together, written by RVC
What my work at Got Green taught me about environmental justice, Written by Shaylea Pilarski, RVC Green Pathways Fellow
Reflection on Ramadan During Quarantine, by Anbar Mahar Sheikh, RVC Capacity Building Lead
How do we support ourselves and our communities during COVID-19?, written by Tracey Wong, 2019-2021 RVC Community Impact Fellow
We need to retain and invest in our staff during this crisis, Written by Ananda Valenzuela, Interim Executive Director of RVC
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If 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.