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Giving Project Member Profiles

Carol BrownCarol Brown - Intergenerational Giving Project Member

Why did you join the Intergenerational Giving Project?

When I heard about the Social Justice Fund NW and its model of foundation grantmaking, I knew I wanted to be involved. Unlike the majority of foundations – operating knowingly or unknowingly in support of white supremacy and white norms – SJF's grantmaking model is unique. SJF’s focus is on organizations led by and communities most affected systemic racism, organizations addressing the root causes of oppression and racism, and organizations that are nimble and able to address the changing needs of their community. SJF maintains a strong belief in funding community organizing as a way to make real and permanent change. 

I was drawn to the Intergenerational Giving Project, which provided the opportunity to focus on funding leadership development and the chance to work with a motivated group of people of all ages. After reviewing organizations that had received funding in previous years I was reminded of the important work being done with the goal of equity. We all need to be part of the movement to change the oppressive systems on which our country was founded and continues to operate. Social Justice Fund NW is one avenue to help make this happen.

What were one or two meaningful experiences or takeaways for you from this Giving Project?

This Giving Project gave me the chance to work in a group setting to analyze race and class issues while challenging myself and others to comprehend our unearned privilege and how it effects how we move through the world. This is the only way we are going to undo our current belief systems and ingrained biases.

For most of us white people, we find the news these days as “shocking.” I often hear people of color express their experience as “same sh*t, different day.”

How do you hope to stay connected to Social Justice Fund NW and/or to the grassroots organizing you supported in this Giving Project?

As an alumnus of the Intergenerational Giving Project, I plan to stay connected to SJF through volunteering with the organization where I can, and encourage friends and family to join a project.  Joining the listservs, email lists, volunteering, and donating to the organizations funded by the SJF are all ways I plan to stay involved.

If YOU are reading this and you haven’t done a Giving Project, the time is NOW!

Lilliane Ballesteros - Intergenerational Giving Project Member

Why did you sign up for a Giving Project?

I signed up for a Giving Project because I wanted to learn more about who was leading change in our communities in the Pacific Northwest. I wanted to also learn about organizing work being led in rural communities. I was especially interested in being part of the Intergenerational Giving Project to meet people of different generations who had different perspectives and experiences than myself.

What were one or two meaningful experiences or takeaways for you from this Giving Project?

I loved, loved, loved, being part of the Intergenerational Giving Project. I met new people - going on site visits with new friends gave me so much learning! And I met people who I continue to talk with and who have really added new ways of thinking to my day to day. It was really valuable to also push myself, both personally and professionally. I found my voice a little more through the Giving Project, which I really value.

How do you hope to stay connected to Social Justice Fund and/or to the grassroots organizing you supported in this Giving Project?

I hope to stay connected with other people from my Giving Project and continue learning together as we continue to support the incredible organizations we met in the project. I would love to continue attending Social Justice Fund events, and will likely be part of another Giving Project in the future.