Self-Care Advice from Maya Angelou: “Withdrawing from the Cares”

2021 marks our fifth year publishing Philanthropy Women. While publishing PW is often exciting, enlightening, and inspiring, the time and energy that the constant production of content requires is significant. As a result, we are going to take a break and enjoy some time to reboot and refresh.

philanthropy women break
PW will be on break as we refresh and recharge before diving into the fall season of our fifth year.

From now until August 23rd, Philanthropy Women will be on a break. We are going to unplug for these weeks, so we can come back stronger than ever to finish out 2021. We will be using this time to be with family and friends, and enjoy favorite activities.

Our content database of over 1,050 articles will still be available. Our Gender Equality Funder Knowledgebase with over 700 listed funders will still be available. We will not be producing any new content during our break. However, each week we will be reposting some of our most popular and impactful stories from the past five years on our front page.

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Janeen Comenote on How Native Feminist Values Can Guide Giving

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Janeen Comenote, Executive Director of the National Urban Indian Family Coalition and Marguerite Casey Foundation board member.

Janeen Comenote, courtesy of Janeen Comenote

1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

When I first started working in the nonprofit sector over 20 years ago, the concept of philanthropy was completely foreign to me and, frankly, intimidating. I wish I would have known then that my lived professional, personal, and cultural experience is an important story for philanthropy to hear. I think there is real power in sharing our stories with one another and philanthropy needs to hear our collective stories. When I first started my career, it was in a sort of silo, I was unaware of how invisible the Native community was in the larger philanthropic, and American, diaspora. I think, had I known then how profoundly that realization would shape my career, I may have utilized additional messaging about it earlier.

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Rajasvini Bhansali: Democratic Future of US Not Guaranteed

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Rajasvini Bhansali, Executive Director of Solidaire Network.

Rajasvini Bhansali
Rajasvini Bhansali, Executive Director of Solidaire Network (courtesy of Rajasvini Bhansali)

1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

I wish I had known to counter any external and internalized messages about individual leadership accomplishments with the recognition that we are deeply interdependent on others for our success. I would have been even more vulnerable and drawn strength from my community and led in a way that created conditions for even greater connectedness amongst different organizations, networks, and alliances. Sometimes I focused on my own team and organization’s needs over all sectoral, movement building and ecosystem level concerns.  But if the ecosystem doesn’t thrive then each organism within it also suffers. So as feminist leaders, we have to continuously nurture the whole ecosystem.

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Shayna Hetzel’s Vision for Gender Equality: An Open Sky as the Norm

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Shayna Hetzel, Community and Social Impact Investment Director at the American Family Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact. 

shayna hetzel
Shayna Hetzel, courtesy of Shayna Hetzel

1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

 My greatest professional challenges, opportunities and successes have been rooted in unapologetic aspirations, insightful mentors and the brilliance of a team. I wish I had known early on how to set better boundaries and ask for help more often, because I have found that boundaries and help are leverage points for productivity, engagement and inclusion. And, fundamentally, community-based, purpose-driven work only gets stronger and bolder with focused, diverse and inclusive contributions. Asking for help not only builds in resilience and wellness for the individual. It also increases team capacity, levels up organizational competencies, and builds a more diverse and inclusive point of view.

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Grameen America to Loan $1.3 Billion with New Initiative for Black Women

Grameen America, a non-profit organization providing microloans and financial opportunities to low-income women entrepreneurs, recently announced its new Elevating Black Women Entrepreneurs initiative. By 2030, Grameen America plans to lend $1.3 billion to 80,000 Black women entrepreneurs with this new initiative.

Image credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com

Based on their track record of over $1.9 billion provided to over 136,000 low-income women already, they’ll reach this new goal and continue leading the way in shifting the racially charged financial situation in the US today. Basically, Grameen America’s Elevating Black Women Entrepreneurs initiative saw the estimated 1.4 million Black women entrepreneurs experiencing “systemic lack of access to affordable credit and capital” and are doing something about it.

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Nicole Small: Supporting STEM Women with the IF/THEN Initiative

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Nicole Small, CEO of Lyda Hill Philanthropies.

Nicole Small, courtesy of Nicole Small
  1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession? 

So many things. There isn’t enough room.  I wish I had known that it was going to be a long and winding road and that, looking back, it would all make sense and would be so much fun! 

2. What is your current greatest professional challenge? 

My greatest professional challenge is that there aren’t enough hours in the day to engage with all of the wonderful teams doing amazing work to advance our communities, both for profit and not for profit.  We are constantly trying to think about balancing strategic long-term initiatives with short-term needs, given that this pandemic has illuminated so many deep issues around economic and health disparities. 

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Sharon Shapiro on Growing New Dimensions with Your Giving Quest

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Sharon Shapiro, Trustee and Community Liaison at the Ruderman Family Foundation.

1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

I wish I had known that philanthropy is a process and that there’s a strategy to giving. Growing up in a family that was highly philanthropic, we really didn’t talk about my parents’ giving and what it meant to them. We saw examples, but it wasn’t really spoken about in the house. Today, I try to teach my kids about philanthropy in a strategic way.

sharon shapiro
Sharon Shapiro is the Trustee and Community Liaison at the Ruderman Family Foundation. (Image Credit: Ruderman Family Foundation)

2. What is your current greatest professional challenge?

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*NEW!* Monthly Super Subscribers: Support PW, Spread Your Message

Philanthropy Women needs your help! To reach our funding goals for 2021, we’re offering a new sponsorship method: ultimate benefits for a fraction of the cost.

Can you believe we’re almost halfway through 2021? Here at Philanthropy Women, this year has been a whirlwind. With so much to cover and so little time to do it, we’re opening the gates for a brand new sponsorship option for Philanthropy Women readers.

We’re divvying up our traditional yearlong Super Subscriptions into monthly support options: our new Monthly Super Subscriptions provide the same benefits of an annual Super Subscription at a price point more easily accessible for NGOs (and their budget committees!).

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Texas Women’s Fdn Event Spotlights Outstanding Gender Lens Leaders

The Texas Women’s Foundation (TWF) held its Leadership Forum and Awards Celebration on April 29th, honoring the trailblazing women making a difference for both Texas and the world. From 10 AM to 12 PM, thousands joined in on the virtual celebration, discussions, and moments of gratitude. The event served to highlight how, particularly since COVID, women’s leadership offers particular value and potential.

texas women's foundation
Leaders honored by the Texas Women’s Foundation at their Leadership and Awards Celebration. (Photo credit: Texas Women’s Foundation and Plano Magazine)

The celebration honored five Maura Women Helping Women Award recipients and two Young Leader Award recipients. The Maura award enters its 42nd year with over 200 past honorees who have and are implementing drastic advancement opportunities for women and girls. The Young Leader Award highlights women leaders under 40 who, through their own accomplishments, are shaping the roads of progress for women everywhere.

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Faith & Philanthropy with Feminist Leaders: Liveblog

On Thursday, April 29th, the Philanthropy Women team gathered with honored guests for the next webinar in our online conversation series: Faith and Philanthropy: How To Live Out Your Beliefs Through Your Giving.

From the changing role of religious institutions in relation to nonprofits and how ways of giving have evolved over time, the latest iteration in our webinar series examined how we as women in philanthropy can live out our faith through our giving practices.

Moderated by Kiersten Marek, the day’s panel included: Yolanda F. Johnson, Founder of Women of Color in Fundraising and Philanthropy and President of Women In Development, New York; Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt, author of Faith and Feminism: A Holy Alliance and lifelong donor activist for women; Emily Nielsen Jones, President of the Imago Dei Fund; Dr. Jane Karlin, Adjunct Professor, NYU, and Board Member, Women of Reform Judaism; and Nikki Toyama-Szeto, Executive Director of Christians for Social Action.

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