Beyond giving: Generation Impact and the crises of 2020

Beyond giving: Generation Impact and the crises of 2020

As the urgent needs of the pandemic spread like wildfire last year, Caitlin Heising knew that she and her family had to do something big. As the daughter of Giving Pledge signers and vice-chair of their San Francisco Bay Area-based Heising-Simons Foundation, Caitlin had the opportunity – and felt the obligation – to ensure that she and her family responded quickly and significantly. Right away the foundation gave $2 million to the UCSF Medical Center to fund Covid-19 testing and treatment efforts, particularly in underserved and undocumented communities. They also formed a partnership with the state of California to help overcome a PPE shortage, created a rapid response fund for grantees who were facing financial strain, and initiated new grantmaking in their community to support equitable economic recovery.

Then, as the other crises of 2020 played out across the US, with communities confronting anew historic patterns of systemic racism and social injustice, Caitlin worked closely with the foundation to expand its existing human rights program and deepen the focus on racial justice, to make new investments in Black-led nonprofits and 501c4 advocacy organizations using a newly established ‘Action Fund’, and to evaluate internal hiring and operational practices with an equity and inclusiveness lens.

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Source: Alliance Magazine


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