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Equity, empowerment and high-quality care

In the aftermath of the earthquake in southern Haiti, grantees and partners continued to fundraise, meet urgent humanitarian needs and speak out about how best to support Haiti. Pierre Noel of the Haiti Development Institute, a WKKF grantee, and Karen Ansara of the Ansara Family Fund at the Boston Foundation, a WKKF funding ally, co-authored a powerful piece in Inside Philanthropy about fostering partnerships and local empowerment in Haiti. Meanwhile, The Haitian Times reported that cell phone company Digicel launched a donation site through which it will help collect – and match – funds for WKKF grantees FOKAL, Health Equity International and Hope for Haiti.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently made a call for comment on its effort to advance racial justice and equity for underserved communities. WKKF grantee National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) answered. NSAC firmly believes “there cannot be a just, resilient, and sustainable food system without meaningful action by the Biden Administration to meet its commitment to racial equity at USDA, in every Agency, and across every program and administrative action.”

WKKF grantee Congress of Communities is going door to door in Detroit to make sure people are aware they may be eligible for the federal Child Tax Credit. Part of a collaborative effort called GetTheTaxFacts.org, organizations working together on this effort include WKKF grantees United Way for Southeastern Michigan and Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency. Other partners include the University of Michigan’s Poverty Solutions initiative, the Accounting Aid Society and the Kresge and Skillman foundations.

The Mexican newspaper Chiapas Paralelo published an article and video honoring Margarita Pérez Pérez, who passed away on Sept. 6. Pérez Pérez was a traditional birth attendant for 35 years and was part of the Movement of Midwives of Chiapas Nich Ixim, which strives to improve recognition and support of the role of midwifery in maternal care in rural Indigenous communities in Chiapas. WKKF supports the coalition through grantees Global Pediatric Alliance and Formación y Capacitación.

The typical start-up costs of a food franchise in the U.S. could require an initial investment of at least $500,000 to $1 million – favoring high-net-worth individuals. Most budding entrepreneurs, especially women and people of color, don’t have high volumes of capital to kick-start their businesses. Everytable, a mission-driven food company and WKKF investee, is changing the game with the launch of its social equity franchise model: Everytable University. The program recruits talented entrepreneurs and sets them on a pathway to owning and operating an Everytable franchise in their local community. Learn more about this disruptive model during an upcoming virtual panel conversation with Everytable and WKKF hosted by SPECTRUM: The Color of Money, a free social impact convening on Sept. 22.

Catching the Dream Learning Center, the first Burmese-owned early care and education center in the United States, opened in the Battle Creek, Mich., area in September. Created by a partnership between WKKF grantees the New Level Sports Ministries, Early Learning Neighborhood Collaborative Battle Creek and the Burma Center, the new center will ensure Burmese children in the community have an opportunity to receive high-quality early care and education while preserving their cultural identity and language. 


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