Updates from The Weingart Foundation May 2023

2023 Weingart Planning Conference

Weingart Board Members and Staff

Our board and staff recently came together for our 2023 Weingart Planning Conference, an annual gathering where we build on the momentum and learning of our past work together to reaffirm our shared commitment to advancing racial justice. The Planning Conference took place at The Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Art & Culture where we were inspired by its mission to promote the Chicano/Latino experience from the perspective of the community through art.

We also had the opportunity to connect with our Inland Empire partners and learn more about how they are building power and advancing on intersectional issues impacting BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities of color including health access, immigrant rights, BIPOC-leadership building, civic engagement, and inclusive economic development. In this bulletin, we are shining a light on TruEvolution and the Palm Springs Section 14 survivors, two organizations that were part of our planning conference.

TruEvolution staff showed us the plan for a future housing development, Project Legacy

TruEvolution staff showed us the plan for a future housing development, Project Legacy

During our Conference, we toured TrueEvolution an organization that provides HIV care and prevention services, emergency housing, and mental health services advancing health equity and racial justice for LGBTQ+ people in the Inland Empire. We were inspired by Gabriel Maldonado, founder and CEO of TruEvolution, whose lived experienced motivates him to advancing the quality of life and human dignity of people of color in the LGBTQ+ experience.

Palms Springs Section 14 Panel

Palm Springs Section 14 Panel with Weingart Board and Staff

As part of our Conference, we heard from the Palm Springs Section 14 Survivors Advisory Group. Section 14 in Palm Springs was a one-square-mile, predominantly African American, working-class community that thrived in the 1900s at a time in California where racially restrictive covenants forced people of color out of certain communities. In the early 1960s, the City of Palm Springs enacted a plan to demolish Section 14 to build more lucrative commercial enterprises. Without proper notice or compensation, the city burned and bulldozed homes, violently displacing residents in what the California Attorney General’s office described in 1965 as a “City-engineered holocaust.”

The Palm Springs Section 14 Survivors Advisory Group was established in 2021 to advocate for the survivors of the city-led destruction with the goal of having the City of Palms Springs repair some of the harm caused to them and their descendants. The Los Angeles Times recently featured the efforts of the Palm Springs Section 14 Survivors.

Learn more about their efforts here: https://vimeo.com/755339911

The Weingart Foundation Honors the Legacy of Pioneering Leader Gloria Molina

We join all Angelenos in mourning the loss of a tremendous pioneering leader, Supervisor Gloria Molina. As the first Latina in the California State Assembly, the Los Angeles City Council, and the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors, she not only opened doors for others to follow, she transformed lives. Many within our Weingart community have had the privilege of working alongside Supervisor Molina over her decades of service on behalf of vulnerable communities. Read our statement about Supervisor Gloria Molina.

Impact Investing Highlights

Dr. Gina Merritt, Owner & Principal of Northern Real Estate Urban Ventures, a developer that is a part of LIIF’s Black Developer Initiative

In addition to grants, impact investing is a powerful tool we increasingly utilize to support communities. Our goal is to use all of our assets to advance our racial justice mission and we are making meaningful progress in this regard.

The Foundation pledged $5 million, as part of a consortium of funders, to the Community Investment Guarantee Pool (CIGP). CIGP recently provided a $2 million loan guarantee for affordable housing to Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF), a Community Development Financial Institution that invests in communities of opportunity, equity, and well-being. Specifically, Weingart’s commitment will support LIIF’S Black Developer Capital Initiative (BDCI) which provides pre-development lines of credit to emerging, Black housing developers who face challenges in accessing flexible, early-stage capital.

We are also actively pursuing opportunities towards our goal of achieving 100% mission-alignment in our investments. We recently committed $10 million dollars to Kah Capital Mortgage Credit Fund II, a fund managed by Kah Capital Management, a leading investment management firm focused on mortgage credit and led by people of color. The investment will support distressed borrowers utilizing Kah Capital Management’s technology driven servicing oversight strategy to restructure their mortgage loans and prevent foreclosures, prioritizing home retention. Many of the borrowers assisted through Kah Capital Management’s strategy are people of color living in low-income communities. This investment advances the Foundation’s housing justice work.

Read About Our Latest Round of Funding

We recently awarded over $7.6 million to 43 nonprofit organizations advancing racial justice across Southern California. More than half of the grants provide unrestricted operating support to organizations that serve historically marginalized communities. The Foundation is operationalizing its racial justice mission with BIPOC leaders at the helm of 84% of the nonprofit partner organizations receiving unrestricted grants. Learn more about our latest round of funding here.

Update from The Weingart Foundation February 2023

Honor Black Lives Through Action

As we celebrate Black History Month, we’re proud to stand with our community partners by investing in Black leadership, voices, and efforts that address anti-Black racism. This includes Black-led and serving partners funded in our latest round of funding: the African American Board Leadership Institute, the Black Migrant Power Fund, Black Alliance for Just Immigration, Youth Mentoring Action Network, and the Empower Initiative.

We’ve invested a total of $5M in the California Black Freedom Fund, a five-year initiative to ensure that Black power-building and movement-based organizations have the sustained investments and resources they need to eradicate systemic and institutional racism.

In response to the murder of Tyre Nicols and others that have lost their lives at the hands of the police, we joined the philanthropic community in calling for justice. Read the letter in response to police violence. We are committed to organizing philanthropy on behalf of Black communities – now and for the long haul.

L.A. Governance Reform Project

We’re proud to join our colleagues in philanthropy to support the L.A. Governance Reform Project, an effort to review the City of Los Angeles’ governance structure and recommend reforms focused on transparency, accountability, and community representation. Led by a team of diverse, L.A.-based academics, the goal is to influence decision-making by LA City elected officials on a new system that removes politics out of the redistricting process. Learn more here.

The John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows Program

Named after the late civil rights leader and former Weingart Foundation Board Member, the John W. Mack Movement Building Fellows program aims to strengthen and develop current and emerging leaders to lead social and racial justice work that results in a more just and equitable Southern California region. Learn about eligibility and how to apply here. The deadline to apply is March 10, 2023.

Join Our Team

Our team is growing. Read about our current job openings here.

Understanding the California State Budget Process – March 2

Partners of the Weingart Foundation are invited to participate in our upcoming learning opportunity. Members of the California Budget & Policy Center team will provide information about the state budget and why advocates, organizers, and funders should engage in budget policy and advocacy. Register today: http://bit.ly/3DS2xG6.

Call for Sessions for the 2023 Los Angeles Immigration Summit – Due March 6

Our partners, The California Community Foundation (CCF) & USC Equity Research Institute (USC ERI), invite you to submit a session proposal for the 2023 Immigration Summit: Our Future is Now! Investing in an Inclusive Los Angeles Region, which will be held in-person on June 27 – 28, 2023 in Los Angeles. Please submit your session proposals by Monday, March 6, 2023 5:00 p.m. PST.