Update from The Weingart Foundation December 2022

New Leadership Brings New Opportunities

Through our support of the Committee for Greater L.A. and their research on homelessness, we know that bringing bold solutions that address the issue is a top priority for Angelenos and they are willing to be a part of the solution. These are the findings of a survey of November 8th voters conducted by The Committee and the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University.

Read this Los Angeles Times story about the findings here.

10 Ideas for Fixing Los Angeles

Our President and C.E.O. Miguel Santana was asked to contribute to this Op-Ed in the L.A. Times with 10 ideas to fix L.A. Read his piece here:

“Angelenos have made it clear that ending homelessness is their top priority, and over the years they have invested an unprecedented amount of money in an effort to house their unhoused neighbors. But the region suffers from fragmented systems, misaligned plans and diverging ideologies.

Now, with new leadership coming to City Hall and the county Board of Supervisors, we have an opportunity to hit the reset button. No one mayor or county supervisor can solve the issue alone.

What we need is a functioning, outcome-driven response system at the scale of the problem, not diffused leadership and finger-pointing. Any credible solution to homelessness needs to have clear data, specific goals and greater transparency. Most of all, moving forward requires clarity of roles and thoughtful coordination between the city and county governments and the region’s many on-the-ground service providers.

The good thing is that while reducing homelessness is a considerable undertaking, it is not an insurmountable problem. Other communities, like Houston in partnership with Harris County, have figured this out, and so can we. The goal should be to create one unified, countywide governing structure that will be accountable to all and which will benefit from the voices of those who have experienced homelessness.”

— Miguel A. Santana

New Report Finds Significant High Levels of Burnout, Mental Health and Financial Challenges Amongst Staff in Immigrant Rights Movement

The California Community Foundation and Weingart Foundation launched a new report, “From Burnout to Wellbeing: Building a Sustainable Immigration Movement,” which examines the current state of nonprofits and staff within Southern California’s immigrant rights movement.

Read the report here.

Read Our F.Y. 2022 Annual Report

We’re delighted to share with you our F.Y. 2022 annual report highlighting our partnership with frontline community leaders, funder colleagues, and cross-sector collaboratives in addressing structural racism throughout Southern California.

This fiscal year, we were able to be back out in person and in community, connecting with, and being guided by our partners as we engaged in proactive grantmaking and impact investing in communities most impacted by systemic racism.

Some highlights from our team in the field.

Looking ahead, we remain committed to learning from, partnering with, and growing people power and movements, to strengthening the infrastructure of the racial justice sector, and advancing racial equity.

Click here to read our F.Y. 2022 Annual Report.

An Open Letter Regarding Los Angeles City Council Members Nury Martinez, Kevin de León and Gil Cedillo from Latino Civic Leaders

We write today in our personal capacity as Latino civic leaders and Angelenos who believe in a just, equitable and inclusive Los Angeles for all. The hateful, racist, and divisive comments heard in the recording released this weekend have no place in public or behind closed doors.

We expect better of our Latino elected officials, and Los Angeles deserves better. We are deeply saddened. These public officials have breached the trust and confidence of our entire city. We condemn their anti-Black, homophobic, and prejudiced sentiments against Indigenous people and other marginalized communities in our city.

Angelenos deserve elected officials who respect them and reflect their values. We must hold these individuals accountable for their hateful remarks and participation. We call for the resignations of Los Angeles City Council Members Nury Martinez, Kevin de León and Gil Cedillo.

These elected officials have failed us and our community as leaders. They have deepened the pain that our communities have experienced especially during a time when our nation has been struggling with hate speech and political division. It is imperative that these city council members resign and accept accountability.

In Solidarity,

Fernando J. Guerra, Ph.D.
Antonia Hernández
Monica Lozano
Fabian Núñez
Manuel Pastor
Angelica Salas
Miguel Santana
Gary Segura
Arturo Vargas

The Weingart Foundation Awards Over $13.5M to Nonprofits Advancing Racial Justice

The funds support strong and healthy communities, invest in BIPOC leadership, and promote collective healing in communities most impacted by systemic racism.

October 4, 2022 (Los Angeles, CA) — The Weingart Foundation, a private grantmaking foundation, awarded 54 grants totaling over $13.5 million to organizations providing critical services to communities most impacted by systemic racism, advancing racial equity, and building power in historically disinvested neighborhoods. The majority of funds, $8.2M, provide unrestricted support, giving nonprofit partners the flexibility to spend resources where needed. Reflecting the Foundation’s commitment to racial justice, 87% of organizations receiving unrestricted financial support are led by people who are Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC). This round of funding is the first round for the Foundation’s fiscal year.

“Stepping into a new year, we are building on our ongoing dedication to advancing racial justice in partnership with organizations that demonstrate time and time again that a just future is possible,” said Miguel A. Santana, President and C.E.O., the Weingart Foundation. “From providing lifesaving resources, to building political power, our nonprofit partners are opening opportunities and strengthening communities across Southern California, and we are honored to stand with them.”

As part of its commitment to sustain social movements, the Weingart Foundation invests in leadership development in BIPOC communities by supporting youth leadership and by strengthening nonprofit leaders. Four partners are currently hosting fellows from Weingart’s John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows Program, which focuses on developing current and emerging leaders of nonprofit organizations and movement networks. Weingart is also investing $740,000 total to Mixteco Indigena Community Organizing Project, Future Leaders of America, and One Step a la Vez, three groups that organize youth to empowering the indigenous, migrant, and farm working communities of Ventura County.

Investments in powerful racial justice coalitions are also a priority for the Foundation. This includes $600K in grants to the Black Equity Initiative Inland Empire, a coalition of nonprofits in the Inland Empire focused on advancing racial equity, co-led by Congregations Organized for Prophetic Engagement and BLUE Education Foundation.

“With support from the Weingart Foundation, we can further our mission of building healthy, productive communities in the Inland Empire,” said Dina Walker, President & C.E.O., BLU Educational Foundation. “We also look forward to continuing to build Black leaders, increase educational access, and advance equity along with our partners through the Black Equity Initiative and appreciate the Foundation’s partnership.”

The Foundation also provided seed funding to the Cultivating Inland Empire Latino Opportunity (CIELO) Fund, which aims to uplift and invest in Latino-led and serving nonprofits, research and highlight issues impacting the Latino community in the Inland Empire, and work to address disparities in the region.

Weingart Foundation program officers work proactively to identify region-specific needs in the Foundations five-county region of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino, and Ventura counties. Giving is guided by the Foundation’s strategic framework, which includes a commitment to 1) Strong and healthy individuals and communities; 2) Civic, cultural, economic, and political power of those most harmed by inequities; and 3) Equitable and just systems.

Housing and homelessness is one of the Foundation’s areas of special interest. The Foundation directed $9.25K in grants to community organizing groups working on campaigns related to tenants’ rights, housing development, and organizing people experiencing homelessness. This includes Aliance for Californians for Community Empowerment Institute, Long Beach Residents Empowered, Congregations Organized for Prophetic Engagement in the Inland Empire, Orange County Congregation Community Organization, and Los Angeles Community Action Network for their work on Skid Row.

South L.A. and South East Los Angeles (SELA) are geographic areas of special interest for the Foundation as these represent regions that have been systemically under resourced. Close to 20% of the Foundation’s awardees are first-time partners, the majority representing organizations based in South L.A. These partners include Vermont Slauson Local Development Corporation, a Community Development Financial Institution (C.D.F.I.) offering technical assistance to South L.A. entrepreneurs; Positive Results Center which provides culturally responsive, trauma-informed care to communities impacted by violence; and Whole Systems Learning, that helps system-impacted youth with an array of healing supports.

To advance more equitable and just systems, Weingart is investing $1.5M to the California Truth and Healing Fund, a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership with the state, aimed at power building efforts within Native American communities across California. Decolonizing Wealth Project, an Indigenous-led racial justice organization disrupting the existing systems of moving and controlling capital, serves as the lead partner for this pooled fund initiative that is centered on racial and economic justice, racial healing, and narrative change.

“We are proud to partner with such passionate nonprofit organizations working tirelessly to end systemic racism and to forge a new path forward,” said Aileen Adams, Board Chair of the Weingart Foundation. “We are consistently inspired by the organizations on the ground meeting essential needs in impacted communities and by how they empower these communities as they build a more equitable future for us all.”

For a full list of grants, please visit the Weingart Foundation website.

The Weingart Foundation is a private, nonprofit grantmaking foundation that partners with communities across Southern California to advance racial, social, and economic justice for all. Our vision is a dynamic and effective social change sector that is creating equitable systems and structures needed to achieve justice. Founded in 1951, the Foundation has to date granted over $1 billion to organizations, strengthening their efforts in human services, health, education, and community power building. In addition, the Foundation builds networks and collaboratives with philanthropic, public sector, and community leaders to advance equity and justice together.

Update from The Weingart Foundation

Feedback from Our Grant Partners: 2021 Survey Findings

Listening and responsiveness to the field are core values for our foundation and an integral part of our approach to advancing racial justice. To help inform our work, we regularly engage the Center for Effective Philanthropy (C.E.P.) to conduct a survey of grant partners, inviting candid and actionable feedback from nonprofits we support.

Key Takeaways from the Feedback Survey:

  • Partners value our commitment to racial equity. Over 80% of the partners surveyed made a change related to racial equity as a result of working with us.
  • Partners share thar our unrestricted, flexible and multi-year funding is critical for building organizational capacity, improving outcomes and impact, providing financial stability, and enhancing their ability to respond to emerging needs and opportunities. They encourage us to continue to provide unrestricted operating support, multi-year grants, and to make larger investments.
  • Partners appreciate our more streamlined processes, spending a median of 20 hours across all requirements over the grant period, a shorter amount than is typical with most funders.
  • Partners also shared that we have an opportunity to bring more clarity to our grantmaking process and further deepen our connection to community partners.

To delve deeper into the insights we gained through the survey and to share more about our grantmaking process, we created this video featuring Joyce Ybarra, our Director of Grant Operations, in conversation with Patricia Watkins, who is part of our team of program officers. Please visit our website to learn more about the survey findings and to access a full copy of the report.

New: Read Program Officer Anthony Ng’s Perspective Piece “Rolling Back Progress: Why SCOTUS Decisions Matter”

The Weingart Foundation supports nonprofit organizations in the pursuit of social change. Like many of our partners, we are concerned about the direction SCOTUS. is taking and the deep implications these rulings have that disproportionally affect BIPOC, L.G.B.T.Q.+, immigrant, and marginalized communities. Read more about why SCOTUS decisions matter.

Meet Our New Program Officer, Anthony Ng and Join Us for the Immigration Summit (June 1 – 2)

Anthony Ng

Meet Anthony Ng, Our New Program Officer

Anthony Ng (he/they) is a long-time advocate for immigrant rights stemming from his lived experience as one of 800,000 people eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. His background in community organizing and dedication to social justice brought him to the Weingart Foundation as a participant of the first cohort of the John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows, a Weingart program that strengthens racial justice leaders and the movement building infrastructure in our region.

We are excited to see Anthony continue this work in social justice as our new program officer for special projects and communication, where he focuses on our areas of special interest including immigrant/refugee integration and rights, housing justice, and strengthening nonprofit effectiveness.

Learn more about Anthony Ng, in this video interview with Program Director Vera de Vera.

Join us for the 2022 Immigration Summit (June 1-2) at Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels

The Weingart Foundation is proud to sponsor the 2022 Immigration Summit, an in-person summit featuring bold campaigns that are building immigrant power, visionaries looking at the future of immigrant justice and new data on the state of immigrants in LA. The conference is co-sponsored by the California Community Foundation, Immigrants Are LA, and USC Dornsife Equity Research Institute.

Register today!