True Partnerships: A Conversation with the New York Women's Foundation
On Wednesday, September 13th, the Helene & Grant Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship held its fifth annual True Partnerships event showcasing the result of a cross-sector partnership between young women of color, local government, community organizations and philanthropy, the Young Women's Initiative. The Young Women’s Initiative (YWI) is the nation’s first-ever initiative dedicated to young women of color. YWI supports young women in overcoming systemic racial and gender inequality and to improve life outcomes in economic security and justice, education, health and safety.
Led by New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, YWI is rooted in participatory governance. The work leading up to the YWI report and recommendations was co-led by a Young Women’s Advisory Council whose chairs and members are young women and trans youth of color. Speaker Mark-Viverito also engaged two co-chairs from community organizations, and The New York Women’s Foundation (NYWF) President and CEO, Ana Oliveira. The panel included speakers:
- Melissa Mark-Viverito, New York City Council Speaker
- Dr. Danielle R. Moss, Co-Chair of the NY City Council’s Young Women’s Initiative & President of Black Agency Executives
- Ana Oliveira, President and CEO, The New York Women's Foundation
Through this collaboration, the YWI has secured new philanthropic funding for programs targeting girls, young women and trans/gender-fluid youth of color in New York City, making for a historic commitment of $20M for girls and young women of color.
True Partnerships: A Conversation with the New York Women's Foundation
MARAYAH AYOUB-SCHREIFELDT: I'm going to graduate in December from the Dyson College of Arts and Sciences with a major in psychology you can hear me right so for the past two summers I was part of the Wilson funded internship program [noise] so for the past two summers I was part of the Wilson funded internship program which funds up to 15 Pace University students in New York metro area of social enterprises and nonprofit organizations each summer and so the last summer so 2016 I was working with International Rescue Committee as part of their New Roots program which helps refugees integrate into their new homes here in New York City and so concentrating on food and nutrition I was teaching refugee youth and food and nutrition classes, I worked on their farm in the South Bronx, and I helped conduct home visits with social workers to see that they're integrating into new homes well and in this summer I just ended mid-august I was working with an organization in Queens called Hour children. They work to help provide services to recently well to women that recently left prison so and they tried doing that to try to stop the process of re-incarceration so as a part of their program I was working with the children and the summer camp which yeah all the children there their mothers were recently released from prison and I was just like organizing activities I'm hanging out with the children and it was really fun really nice. And so both of these experiences have been increased incredibly valuable to me as a student as a young professional just as the human being and as a person because it gave me a lot of insights into the things that I didn't know before. And of course classroom learning is really important but these experiences kind of confirmed my passion to work in the public service and social justice sector and it gave me a wider view or a more deeper understanding of like the complexity and the challenges of the sector which i think is good for someone who wants to work in the sector in the day. And yeah so these hands-on experiences we're really invaluable in helping me make my decision now that I'm graduating December that is the path that I want to go on that now I know it better, so I'm more sure of that path so for all the pace university students that are in the room the Wilson funded internship opportunities will be hosted on a recruit e-recruiting in mid spring 2018 so I encourage everybody to apply and now on behalf of the Wilson Center welcome to tonight's event best practices and collaboration for social impact the conversation for the New York Women’s Foundation and now it's my pleasure to introduce Interim Provost Nira Herrmann. Thank you
NIRA HERRMANN: Good evening I've only been the interim provost for two months so I still I'm fighting thinking of myself as the Dean of Dyson College because I'm trying to be very ecumenical but to have a Dyson almost grad speak to you is really very thrilling for me in my former capacity and listening to her talk about how impactful her experiences outside the classroom were in really helping her to define what she wanted to study in school and how it would be useful to her in the real world and really reaffirming general what she wants to do is I think a key to what we're trying to do at Pace that we're trying to give students a real opportunity to mix their academics with practical experiences, internships and doing a lot of different activities so that they really figure out what they want to do before they before they get there and we do require of all of our students that they take out what we call a civic engagement class where the faculty works with center for community action and research which is a Dyson entity but that actually serves the entire university so that we really you know this is partly about partnerships it's a group that really partners with all of the schools to find community organizations that have a need and to bring our students who want to help fill that need to work with them and to really accomplish things that are meaningful to the community rather than to volunteer doing things we think will be wonderful to do and that's again been a source of a lot of leadership training in the nonprofit area and showing those students by modeling for them what it looks like to partner with entities outside of the university as well as with people in the community and it also shows them how the skills that they're learning in their classes really have meaning outside of the university as well. You know when the Wilsons came and they wanted to form a center that would not only foster working in the social area but also talk about the most complicated part of it which is the social entrepreneurship you know you want to do good works but you also have to eat you also have to pay a rent how do you raise the money that keeps this whole process going you know and how do you get other people to buy into helping support you and helping you support our students so that the internships that they do are not just unfunded but they also can earn enough that they can survive and that's a real trick and so you know one of the pleasures for me of having this event sponsored by the Wilson Center is that you really get to see the kind of opportunities that they have helped us to create as well in that nonprofit arena placing students and again making it a very viable opportunity for them. According to our Career Services Department approximately 31% of our students graduate are employed in the public sector after graduation which includes nonprofits, public schools, charter schools, and government work and because of that we have established a minor in nonprofit studies that was developed in collaboration with our masters of Public Administration program that was originally up in White Plains and now is offered both in the Pleasantville campus and expanded down here to New York. So we're able to create many more linkages between the undergrad and the public administration, including five year degree programs where they come in as a freshman and graduate with a master's degree for the MPA and again fostering this kind of work. So for me that's very inspiring to see. We have a lot of work with especially women in prison up in Pleasantville we do a lot of work with the prison on Harris Road and we have a program that also involves keeping incarcerated women connected to their children and we're experimenting with bringing puppies into the dogs into the prison and having the women bond with the dogs and use that as a vehicle to keep them connected with their with their children and it's been done with a real experimental design half women have been getting counseling and puppies and the other half have been getting just the counseling and we're trying to see if the puppies make a difference but the most telling thing was that when we had the closing party at the end of the proposed project the women who have not had the dog said well I would come to the party when you bring the dogs so clearly the dogs are having an impact and part of what we're trying to do is not only cut down the recidivism of the women but the statistics show that if your mom is incarcerated the risk that you will be incarcerated as their child is much more increase, we want to stop that cycle as well. So there's a lot of good work that we are trying to do, much of it is done in partnerships - partnerships with the prisons partnerships with the people that provide us the dog foundation that provides us with the puppies and partnerships with community organizations and that's what tonight's discussion will be on the importance of partnerships and creating meaningful and sustainable programs and that is something I think we're all very keenly aware of and I look forward to hearing our speakers talk about some of these issues I want to thank all of you for being here and getting engaged in these kinds of issues and I hope you'll come back for all the other programs and I want to introduce to you Rebecca Tekula who came here as the director of the Wilson Center. Took a Center that was basically a concept that hadn't quite figured out how to make itself manifest and really created the wonderful Center we have now that takes in faculty and gives them opportunities to study in the nonprofit area to do their research and take students and places them in the nonprofit area and we're becoming a real opportunity for providing our students with leadership skills. So it's my great pleasure to introduce Dr. Tekula who is both the executive director of the Wilson Center and an Assistant Professor of Public Administration also in Dyson College so thank you very much.
REBECCA TEKULA: Thank You Dr. Herrmann it's really appropriate to have Provost Herrmann welcome you all here tonight to this event I always talked about her an example in the deanship of taking centers or institute's like the Wilson Center like Center for Community Action and Research as she mentioned and really opening them up to the entire university, maybe this is kind of I don't I don't say talking out of school it's talking it in school when you're talking about the business of higher education but sometimes when you have things that are within a school within a university so for example in a business school or in a medical school the opportunities and the funding and the resources are often kept restricted just to the students of that school and not opened to other departments across the institution, and I think that as dean, Provost Herrmann really improved that to not be a necessity and that really rising tide lifts all boats and without offending the men in the room I think a lot of women at work know this intrinsically that partnerships are how you can get anything done you need to have a team and nothing is ever about you alone acting especially when we're trying to make change on the level of what we're going to be talking about tonight and so it's an honor to be introduced by Provost Herman so as she said I'm Rebecca Tekula Executive Director of the Wilson Center and Assistant Professor of Public administration here in the New York City campus is where I mostly teach. This is our fifth annual true partnerships event which showcases best practices and collaborations for social impact, so in my opinion this event series is really unique. Typically evenings like this showcase one person's story of social change or we might have a panel of speakers or panel experts share their perspective on a single topic, maybe people who've never met each other before but instead this event series is really to serve as a lens into how meaningful change and sustainable social impact is really achieved and that's always as a true partnership between passionate people working both across sectors and within their own organizations to accomplish joint goals and create real outcomes. So this year our topic of conversation is the young woman's initiative, the nation’s first-ever initiative dedicated to young women of color. The young woman's initiative is a cross sector partnership between young women of color local government community organizations and philanthropy and it already has commitments of 10 million dollars from the New York City Council and another 10 million from the New York fund for girls and young women of color tonight's discussion will explore how this partnership has created meaningful and sustainable social impact right here in our city and will in the future. So before we get started a few administrative notes on each of your chairs you'll find a one-pager on the young woman's initiative, a bio page with information on each panelist and on the bottom of that bio page on the back you'll see social media info which includes accounts of speakers and organizations represented tonight along with hashtags so please feel free to tweet, tweet away! We'd love to have you at future events and activities our Facebook page is probably the best place to see what's coming up on our calendar. So for tonight we'll have our panelists answering questions from the moderator for the first 45 minutes and then we'll open it up to questions for you. There's the microphone there for Q&A; so without further ado it's my pleasure to hand things over to our Archana Shah, our Associate Director of the Wilson Center and our moderator for tonight
ARCHANA SHAH: Can everybody hear me? excellent oh so we're just waiting for the speaker to come back she just said take a quick phone call but I'm just going to introduce at least two of our speakers and then you know we'll get started very shortly. First of all thank you Rebecca, it's my privilege to introduce our guest speakers for tonight a trio of powerful thought and action leaders and I don't exaggerate when I say that. First we have the honorable speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito who is outside so we'll come back to her, then on in the middle we have the remarkable Dr. Danielle Moss she's co-chair of the New York City Council's young woman's initiative and president of the black agency executive and also most recently as of today the chief of staff of the NYCLU so welcome [applause] and then the formidable Ana Oliviera, I'm sure many of you already know, President and CEO of the New York Women’s Foundation and our partner for today's event. [Applause] so in the far side as I was saying earlier we have the Honorable Melissa Mark-Viverito speaker in the New York City Council [Applause]. It’s a real honor to have you here, and welcome to Pace. Before we just get started with my first question I want to also take a moment to acknowledge the critical partnerships of Joan Smith, founder and executive director of the Girls for Gender Equity who is also a co-chair at the initiative and the young women's Advisory Committee who were all integral an integral part of the development, execution of this initiative. So a round of applause to them for all their hard work. As it’s been said a few times we're here to explore what a collaboration like this entails - the opportunities the challenges and the next steps. And if I could start with you Melissa you launched this initiative, was the impetus of starting this program if you could give the audience an idea of sort of your insights and thoughts when you started and maybe while are you're talking about that provide a brief timeline and the process of how you operationalize like something like this.
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: So first of all thank you so much for the invitation real pleasure to be here with these two wonderful women with whom we’ve developed such an incredible partnership around this initiative and you know what it says as legislators and those of us who really care about creating and believe in collaborations and in participation of those that we represent, an effective legislator really should be responsive right to what the people are asking for or calling for and I had been hearing a lot of advocacy around this issue, and that when Obama had done my brother's keeper and when Bloomberg had done his male initiative here in the city of New York there was no conversation about our young women and there was advocacy around that right that advocates wanted to see some government response or investment in this idea of may not a vision for young women so a lot of it came and I always give respect to the grassroots and the organizations on the ground that are doing this work and then obviously philanthropy was interested in stepping up but how do I use my platform you know as a speaker as government to kind of say well we want to invest in this right and we want to bring philanthropy and grassroots and actual women young women into the conversation what can government do how can we be more responsive to the needs that you identified what are the challenges that you have as a young woman in the city of New York and particularly a young women of color you know what are the barriers that exist and how can we be more responsive to that so it really did emerge from the communities and philanthropy saying we're willing to step up and it has been a very powerful process right it was about a year almost 14 or 15 months that we convene the steering committee that was a very diverse represented wide group of individuals in private in government in the grassroots in the nonprofit world and young women themselves and then a whole series of working groups task force's in different as education and health and workforce development you know of a wide range of issues and then a process of engagement and conversation very engaging and it led to a report that had over 80 recommendations, we did a whole digital campaign so they kill women themselves could talk about you know it was called the She Will Be campaign and really empowering a campaign for the young women to be a part of and to contribute to this digital platform that we created so all of that really created a lot of energy and buzz and to the point where you know after the recommendations were done, Ana as an incredible leader in the philanthropic community and, we said we'll put in five million dollars and philanthropy will raise five million dollars but then we upped it to ten million in ten millions it's about twenty million dollar investment - 10 million coming from the council 10 million coming from philanthropy to invest in some of the recommendations that have been laid out so now just to end we're in the process of 1)funding initiatives that speak to those recommendations and then 2)also looking at legislation that we can enact that also speaks to those recommendations and so it's been really incredible we're well on our way to really seeing a lot of that of that those recommendations being put into action.
ARCHANA SHAH: Thank you for that introduction to how YWI started if I can switch to Danielle and Anna here can you each in turn walk us through your involvement at the various stages of the collaborative initiative, from the launch to establishing the collaboration and to the process of creating the initiatives that we see today. Maybe take the perspective of the organizations you were with it you are representing
DANIELLE R. MOSS: So you know one of the things that I have to say about the speaker is that she has a way of saying yes when others say no and I think that we have to hold that up and acknowledge that and so I first began working in your office actually in my capacity as president of black agency executives which is a forty-year-old membership organization really in support the black leadership in a nonprofit sector that began at a time when our nonprofits were serving communities of color but very rarely did you actually see leaders of color in CEO roles in the sector and we were working with the Hispanic Federation, Asian American Federation to say you know a lot of us lost ground during a previous iteration of city government and you know that the reason was we were constantly being told well you don't have the capacity to take on new funded initiatives and so the group kind of concocted this idea what if City Council used discretionary funding to actually help organizations led by people of color serving in communities of color build the capacity you say we don't have that is the reason why we're not being funded and so that was actually how I first began the relationship with the speaker's office, that was another instance she courageously said yes and so I also then happened to be at a women's organization, a historic women's organizations that I think that at one point really been doing ground breaking work to uplift women in the city that was really in a position to start to regain some of that previous momentum and so she called me and it just seemed to be a perfect fit and I have to say, you know Ana. People quote Ana Oliviera in the sector, when you go to meetings, when they are writing articles, no, I’m really serious, and I knew I would have the opportunity to work so closely with her and Joanne Smith of GGE. You know, who could say no, not me!
ARCHANA SHAH: Same question for you, Ana.
ANA OLIVEIRA: Good evening everybody. First of all, I want to thank Pace and the Wilson Center it’s really nice for us that we are not organizing the event. We were asked to partner you know that's really fantastic no it's that circle of energy going back and around you and you know it's wonderful to be asked to partner. So I could answer this question on so many levels but I'm going to say a couple of things, it makes an enormous difference who leads and this initiative as our incredible speaker said came from community leaders, came from community leadership, came from Joanne Smith, Girls from Gender Equity, from the YW, from Danielle from others, incredible participants over a hundred, I think of 120 or so women who committed, cis and trans, and I am going to say that, when I, when we are saying women I'm saying in a very inclusive manner, including cis, trans, gender-fluid individuals that were committed to this process and you know the commitment of putting your hopes out, the commitment of taking the risk to say what you faced and what it would like to see different, is something that none of us takes lightly and the reason why we were so honored to participate in this from our corner of the world, which is philanthropy is because of the people that we were working with, is because we knew that the young women that were coming and participating in the process were actually going to be heard, that they were not going to just be entertained that what they were saying was going to be taken with utmost seriousness, and not like doubted and I say this because it’s the speaker's leadership Melissa. Melissa, as Danielle was saying, you have had an action to deal with the inequality of funding for communities of color, that's right, seeing government as a participatory process in which people actually should have a voice and that government officials actually should listen, is not easy to find. I mean even in progressive leaders that kind of paradigm of government is not easy so that was a fundamental element that made it possible for us to participate. The other is because you know you've heard about the 10 million, we know that we cannot change the world and create equity, equality let alone equity, if we don't have partnership investments that come too and so that was important to us. But fundamentally the New York Women’s Foundation we believe that problems and solutions live in the same place, the folks that live the problems deal with them create solutions, they could be micro solutions they could be macro solutions the issue is not that, the issue is the rest of us talking about philanthropy right now, doesn't see it, don’t recognize those solutions as valid enough as tested enough as I don't know you know scaled up enough of course things that are not invested and not scaled up so it becomes a vicious circle in which what is knowledge what is considered in a worthy investment is something that is extricated from the lines of communities and it's almost like disemboweled of its soul of its power and then we try to replicate it. We prefer to fund people that are living issues that are creating solutions and promote opportunities for them to share with others. The Young Woman's Initiative is really that. It was an incredible process. And I want to say something that is very important I know this is not an audience of funders but it's really important for us to try to mitigate in these processes the structural inequalities that are right there from the beginning. So every day I went to one of those meetings you know what's part of my job so I was getting my salary, that was part of my job, same thing for Danielle, same things for the speaker, but for the young women they're the very reason they're very knowledge and very wisdom the very voice it was not part of their paid job but we made it be so that they were paid when we were sitting around those things everybody was being paid for their commitment, for their knowledge, for their sharing these are subtle little things that are really not subtle you know because if we value people and their knowledge we should value that as well. There were characteristics of this process that are really different you know they go a little bit with a participatory budgeting process then the speaker has spearheaded in the NYC which in that engagement, and for philanthropy is best for us is best for us to listen to people to listen to leaders to see how we can have an added value. So it was an easy, as Danielle said, how could we not say yes you know it was very easy I just want to do one thing and that is I wanted to introduce some staff in the New York Women’s Foundation that actually does that work you know and which is really important for you to know you know. Gael Black our manager of communications Lorraine Stevens our VP of programs and Pat Ang who actually runs the New York City Fund for Girls and Young Women of Color. We’re over 10mm, ten plus, we needed to match the speaker of course and we need to continue going as well, because we will come back to the next speaker as well and say match us now. This will be a growing process.
DANIELLE R. MOSS: So I had two really important experiences as an adult of the YWI. The first is realty this deep commitment to avoiding the cycle of poverty voyeurism where you get young women of color, from, “at risk” you know all the isms, to get folks to come and tell people how difficult their lives are and those folks always had the option to listen, to be sympathetic in the moment and then go back to business as usual and that was not this. And so when Ana made the commitment from the foundation to say you know what these young women are the experts of their own lives and to pay them to participate in the process I thought that was revolutionary. And I thought it was also really important for her colleagues within philanthropy to see that because having spent a lot of time in the sector over the years I can’t tell you the number a funder who want you to bring a young person. Are they paying for the metro card – no. to come and pour out your guts spill all the details and the nitty gritty of your lives and then say, oh, you know, it’s not scalable. So I think that kind of acknowledgement of the need to shift the power dynamic and also the introduction of how that whole thing in philanthropy really is the maintenance of a 1% supremacy dynamic that is not what we’ve called it before I thought also was really important.
ARCHANA SHAH: That’s really helpful and you’ve actually led me into my next question, Ana, which is what role can philanthropy play in partnerships and how can it do better and I think you addressed it, but NYWF has a very unqiue, sounds like it unique perspective on how philanthropy should be. But how do you scale that? To use the same terminology here.
ANA OLIVEIRA: So in NYC I think we're fortunate that we have other colleagues as well they have very progressive approach to philanthropy you know and I need to say that like the north star, third wave you know just to say a few that are very this kind of ilk of community leadership of really not feeling that because we have a little more money we have more knowledge, money and knowledge do not equate they're not really they don't not equate. So how do we scale that up? Pat has done a terrific job of inviting other foundations to join us, there are many obstacles why people don't invest you know look in philanthropy very few dollars go to communities of color period very dismal percent very few dollars go to women of all colors period put the two things together it's like few, few, few and then when you were talking to people, people will say well that's not in our priority so we don't we're not staffed with that kind of capacity and one of the things that the fund does it provides the opportunity for foundations who understand that they can't have a commitment for education they can't have a commitment doesn't matter what it is for workforce development they can't have a commitment for you know health if they include the voices and the lives of young women of color it just can't achieve your goals so in then providing them with the opportunity and the expertise of the foundation to engage them in that process of grant making. I want to make one little comments and I just can't resist that sorry about that it's not it's a little bit about philanthropy I'll try to leave the philanthropy paint there but it's about the rising tide in the boats. so I you know we would we would like it to be in my opinion you know we at the foundation would like it to be that rising tides actually as Rebecca said lift all boats, but we're living in the world were all boats are not equal so what happens is some boats have been made you know of very weak material that's because they haven't they haven't been you know they have been poor materials you know they haven't been the best materials available the people that were there you know those boats did not get those other materials they can leak and sometimes in the rising tide they can have the opposite effect because a very weak boat can topple you know and I'm saying this because we are living in the world and this is why also the young woman's initiative is so important, in which if we don't intentionally invest in the boats, if we don’t intentionally invest in the structural conditions education health the various aspects of you know regulatory unintentional but nevertheless discriminatory practices the boats of those young women can't go with the tide lifting up - does that make sense that I'm saying and what we heard from them is that from the very beginning in their lives they are living in communities that all the boats in that community are very fragile you know they're fragile they are rowing them very strongly but they're fragile boats and the oars are also fragile, would be nice to have motors too but that's just another story so the initiative places the solution of the issues with young women of color, the initiative in those eighty priorities that speaker's was talking about talks about what are the systems in the practices that we have that from the get-go you know design a weak boats in people's lives you know and place people in weak boats so what was so important about the initiative as well is that dimension it's not an initiative to correct the behavior of young women of color it's an initiative to foster authorship leadership and to change the practices of the things that we do in the city and it's going beyond but just to say that you know I just couldn’t resist.
ARCHANA SHAH: No that's really No that’s helpful and insightful and many of us want to learn about that so that's thank you for that. Danielle if I could go back to you why is it important was it so important for community to be involved in this initiative and maybe specifically the organization I think you touched upon it briefly but if you can expand broadly on community.
DANIELLE R. MOSS: So I was born and raised in NY on the UWS started my career as a middle school teacher in the Bronx then worked in an after school program at a very challenged middle school in BedStuy and there was never time in my career and I also have a 21 year old daughter so I am personally invested, besides being a recovering black girl myself, so I lived and heard the stories and the challenges of our young people you know there was a time of Metro Cards like working around the clock so you could go to as many sporting events and after school activities as you wanted you know then you got three rides then it was like a real balancing act well you know I was blessed to come from a family where you know the cost of transportation wasn't going to be a deciding factor to what I had access to but that wasn't the reality for a lot of the young people that I worked with you know folks will look at folks who are living in systemic poverty and say oh you didn’t pay your light bill you know you need money management classes no I need the money! People are juggling you know that takes incredible skills and figure out when you wake up in the morning what's the most pressing need in your family is in that moment and to try to attend to that need as best you can and in a society that is judging you the entire time. and I also kind of watched my own daughter's progression just as it was a girl living in a very misogynistic society you know maybe she was 12 the first time I was at a mall and I noticed that men were looking at her not as a little girl walking with their parents but as a an object of sexual desire to the point where I'm like walking behind my daughter telling people off like what are you doing? and that was her lived reality I remember there was a time of my own life when I felt like you know I went I went to a very liberal college you know where I am I definitely was raised with a certain notion of like what a feminist is and I didn't wear Birkenstocks and I shaved my underarms so I felt like that narrative didn't include me right and then I was talking to a friend and she said think about your day think about how many decisions you make based on your gender - what train you're going to take, what time you will take the train what blocks you walk on and don't walk on, on a daily basis we live a very gendered existence and we expect young girls to kind of figure this out I remember when I was running a college access organization in Harlem and I listen to my young women my black and Latina young women say you know I don’t walk on this street just to get from the train station to 7th avenue right from Lenox to 7th I walk around this block. I listen to my headphones but I don’t really have any music playing in my headphones cause I know I have to be aware of my surroundings but I want all the men who are going to approach me on that long block to think that I’m listening to something so maybe they don’t speak to me. That’s kind of, for me it’s very personal as a mother as a teacher as a youth development worker that’s the attitude of who I am to say you know the girls are not alright this idea that if you look at any metric, health, housing economic power, we particularly, black women are at the bottom of everything. My grandmother worked as a domestic in Washington dc for many years with the hope that I would have a different kind of outcome and different opportunities that and so when people say well how come black folks won’t have a certain kind of job or that job do this you know so many groups have had the opportunity to come in at a certain level and work their way up and there's this persistent status of poverty and disadvantage that is attached to me simply because of the color of my skin. So that’s why I fight I go, whatever organization is fighting in the moment I’m ready to be down with that.
ARCHANA SHAH: Absolutely I mean personal obviously personal experiences and that kind of passion is unmatched. it's when you're living in every day that you become much more involved
DANIELLE R. MOSS: And you know I had educational opportunities professional opportunities and so to me that’s not just about me I thought how can I leverage the opportunities so that the community benefits and that's not easy you know I'm sure that where people saying to the speaker you really want to put your political hat on women of color? when women are willing to risk something for other women you have to put your arms around them [Applause] Sometimes when you’re the only one in the faculty room you know if I seem like I have my sisters back I might be seen as a trouble maker. I have this conversation with people all the time and that’s when the distancing happens. Especially for young women, I have a young student I’ve known for many years everyone was like hurrah, hurrah until I actually graduated from college and entered the workplace and maybe I’m seen as competition or maybe I’m stepping on someone’s toes and now nobody wants to see me win. We have to be able to talk about what does it look like to support other women, unapologetically. Sorry for going on my soap box, I think what we ae learning from this current administration, if you want to call it that is to be unapologetically who you are without question.
ARCHANA SHAH: No I mean I think I think you're speaking to what a lot of people are experiencing and thinking so do not apologize for getting on your soapbox. I think you're just verbalizing what a lot of us experience and think about every day so thank you for that and if I can circle back to you Melissa um clearly as I think Danielle and Ana pointed out you took a risk you really thought outside the box and when you launched this initiative and I wanted to maybe get a little bit into that why was it a position that you were in city government that you thought this is something I could this is a platform on which I could do this or was it was this the platform on which you could involve government local philanthropy and community organizations to really get something going?
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: Because I'm a woman first of all right in terms of looking at how we can make government responsive to help empower young women to really achieve their full potential you know and as a young woman who's gone through my own set of challenges you know I was raised in a very strong female environment raised in the feminist movement of the 1970s and raised in the Puerto Rican feminist movement not only by my mother but all the women that were active in that movement right so very much an environment of nurturing who I was and being outspoken and not being afraid to speak out and then coming into the environment here in New York having to find my voice right and figuring out how I could really stand on my own you know I was becoming independent I was here on my own trying to figure out my way but then so that you know the idea of being able to use government to help young women really achieve their potential I think just was something that I couldn't pass up and the fact that there was so little attention being paid to it and my style of governance in general is being very inclusive and collaborative right about having government not speak at you but figuring out the way that we can incorporate the voices those that are being impacted into the decision-making process let them define for themselves right what the need is and how we can help them and then we have to respond and takes a lot of work and that's why I mean I that's usually the way I've done a lot of the work in my community is a collaborative process it's intense it takes a lot more effort but that really is the way that you can start breaking down some of these systemic issues right so and it just was something that definitely appealed to me and as a woman as a Latina and one that truly believes in social justice and equality and that government has a role to play in creating equity in trying to uproot some of the systemic prejudices and racism that do permeate our systems or a permeates government it permeates our bureaucracies it permeates you know so we have to figure out how we can try to slowly chip away at that and so as someone who's inclusive and who it is a you know very collaborative and who believes in equity injustice you know I definitely wanted to be part of a movement that was about empowering young women and giving them a voice and so this now has been such an incredible process that we actually you know prior to the prior administration which I miss very dearly the Obama administration you know there was an office that was committed to really working about equity for young women right and that's been totally dismantled but we had gone to Washington several times because this model was one that they wanted to see how it could be replicated in other areas and we have cities that on their own are expressing an interest and are incorporating young woman's initiative so we're starting to see the power of what we've built now it's being replicated and there's other philanthropies and other cities and other city governments that want in the same thing you know so it's been incredible and you know as I start to near the end of my term obviously I have three and a half months left you know the idea of legacy and what contributions have you made I'm excited right that this is something that is that outlive me and the ownership that everyone has been part of it has taken towards it and defending and continue to advocate that it there and not going away and that the City Council continue to invest you know is important and this is a role we all have to take because I'm not insulting my male colleagues and I’ll be clear but there's a different perspective we bring to the table on issues like this and so more likely than not there will be a male speaker and we have seen a loss of women in the City Council so you know these issues that impact us and you know it's something that we have to continue to fight for because many of us in these positions continue to be the only woman in the room and we're trying to make government respond to our needs and if our voices are not at the table it's harder to do as we can see what's happening at the federal level right men when you see these pictures men that are making decisions about my body and that's just not acceptable so that's you know it's been incredible process and again the ownership that all of those that have been part of this I've I feel very strongly about protecting this and moving it forward
ARCHANA SHAH: Thank you I think you touched on a really powerful thing about how ownership something like a collaboration like this actually allows this to live on beyond sort of your term and beyond changes in government because ownership has been transferred but there is ownership at community at philanthropy and so this work can continue well beyond just you know sort of your term and future governments
ANA OLIVEIRA: I wanted to add something one of the great outcomes of the initiative is that the young women that participated during the process of time they constituted themselves in the young woman's Advisory Council that we lovingly call YWAC that great and that council resides at Girls for Gender Equity lives there so they only didn't have to create another of any station and it's their own tongue story so the funds the council know the 10-million thing that we talked about supports that so that their ownership their ability to hold all of us accountable to both governmental philanthropy to you know maintain that and the continued strengthening on their Leadership bureaucracy in their voice is ensured so that was the first become a nation that came out of the eighty recommendations and it was the first thing that we funded because philanthropy can fund different things than government can you know the answer to that other questions philanthropy needs to be involved you know that we should say yes the power of philanthropy is not to say no I'm not gonna fund you the power of philanthropy is to say yes I will fund so that's one thing so I wanted to put the voice on the leadership of young women of color that continues to as YWAC as probably the best thing that we're doing to continue to ensure that and we will be supporting all the voices and organizing and planning ahead the speaker talked about that there are seven other states and cities that have young women's initiatives. Joanne Smith is working very hard from a community based building bringing you know young women of color organizations to the table women's foundations in several other localities are also investing in that and supporting that and getting your governments they don't all have somebody like Melissa, okay I just want to say that we really have had a golden opportunity and I as I hear from my colleagues know for the foundation too there are these moments in times that you know the 30 years of funding that we've been doing for girls and there there's a moment that an opportunity comes and you have to seize it you know as soon as you heard but to ensure that it will continue you know to ensure that the legacy is it you know we need about a minimum of a generation of investment that a generation of investment is a minimum of more than 22, 23 years that's the kind of game that we need to play we are not doing yes we want immediate investments with a long-term perspective right but so all of us regardless of what we'll be doing five years from now that commitment exists and more importantly the funding for young women of color to be able to continue their leadership is the most important thing that I think philanthropy can do in this.
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: I want to give some examples of some of the recommendations on like what we've done to respond to them just get an idea so on the legislative side and this is again coming from recommendations from the from those committee and then the group Young Women’s Initiative, collecting this disaggregated data on sexuality and gender identity for the Asian Pacific American community in multiracial New Yorkers we require the administration to convene a task force to examine obstacles to education and employment of youth out of school out of work youth a creation of a sexual education task force to provide comprehensive age-appropriate sexual health education for all students in all grades that will be a tough one but you know the idea that we have to start talking to our kids about sexual health right from an early age and starting to destigmatize and just make it support so that's not on a legislative side and on the funding side in terms of initiatives you know we fought to improve and extend culturally responsive training for teachers trying to help address implicit bias so that idea of implicit bias which is actually something that now I believe our NYPD is implementing within the agency where gender equity liaisons in specific city agencies again something that came out of this initiative this designated contraceptive funds like so these are some examples again stuff that we are funding that came out of recommendations from the YWI work.
ARCHANA SHAH: That's great and I think if I circle back to kind of the topic to it that we have on hand as true partnerships towards social impact I think the one big takeaway we just had from the conversation so far is that it has to live on I mean there's great to have social impact today and tomorrow but what about this generational change we're trying to do we don't want to be sitting here hopefully a generation from now having the same exact conversation and so it sounds like the way this collaboration was set up is that it can live on and the power sits with the people that can make the difference and the funding like you said.
ANA OLIVEIRA: We are funding things in the fund also they have to do with leadership with voice with community organizing with movement building Civic engagements so that we you know looking at the recommendations continue to compliment what government is funding and really and listening you know the way the foundation does it's granted and the fund does is continuing to listen to young women you know so that the recommendations continue to evolve so to speak you know as they arise
ARCHANA SHAH: So they stay relevant um this is this is this is extremely interesting and insightful for all of us who are passionate about doing social impact work and you know as an individual actor or as a collaborative and also understanding the importance of seeking out partnerships so this is a great example. I wanted to shift gears a little bit if you don't mind and especially as community organizations and philanthropy you have to answer to different stakeholders how is how did you maybe Danielle you can start, how did you manage to sort of work with your stakeholders who may have had different priorities and remain accountable to them as the Initiative progressed
DANIELLE R. MOSS: Very carefully. I think one of the greatest opportunities that the nonprofit sector offers is this chance to create occasions where the wealthiest folks and the least resourced folks have the opportunity to come together in spaces that it would never happen under any circumstances like I've been at a board meeting at a law firm with young people with law partners who like but for this sector that role just wouldn't occur but I think on the flip side there is which is why honest courageous conversations with folks in Philanthropy were so important you know we are businesses right and so you're always you know even though the constituents that you serve the communities that you serve are supposed to be your primary stakeholders and I think it’s very easy to begin to tow a party line that caters to philanthropy in a way that probably in many cases doesn't necessarily benefit the community that you say you're trying to have a positive impact on and so I think there's always kind of a balancing act that has to happen where you might have someone you know on a board that feels like oh do you want to say black girls – why not? but you know what I'm saying but you know really just being very ginger in terms of how you approach those situations. I'm probably more courageous or stupid depending on who you talk to than others in terms of saying you know I believe in progress right so we could stand here and debate semantics or we can really live up to the to what we say we want to be and do as an organization
ARCHANA SHAH: It is a challenge it seems.
DANIELLE R. MOSS: Yea I think it’s situational but I think it’s a challenge. I think there are a lot of organizations that are replete with resources that really aren’t having the impact that they should be having on communities because they lost the focus on community and they are catering to a very different stakeholder
ARCHANA SHAH: I mean that makes a lot of sense and it's unfortunate that is the case but I'm glad we were able to get past that for your organization at least. Ana, if I can ask you the same question obviously philanthropy has stakeholders to how do you navigate accountability when you know in you know to Danielle’s point so it maybe make someone uncomfortable but maybe they're an important stakeholder how do you balance that and continue making progress?
ANA OLIVEIRA: So yes you know in our case we are a public foundation a public foundation fund raises and it has board members you know like real board members that you have to be accountable to I that’s I think that's pretty healthy actually but as opposed to just like a private thing because then the accountability is more – it exists but it’s more limited so unfortunately the conditions of the world make it very easy for me to make the case what do I mean by that if you look at data you can look at data from any perspective and what do we find we find persistent historical reproduced decade over decade and beyond, gender and racial differences in any dimension of social life education health anything business anything economics anything so just based on data I can make the case and I made the case you know tell the board and tell our donors this is what New York City looks like we are not a resource poor city, area even country this is completely unacceptable unintelligent, depends who your audience is, unethical you name it you know audiences they're different things that move people but in all of those variables it's very easy to make the case because of incredible horrible conditions of inequality you know gender issues and racial issues that we deal with all of that within a context of enormous economic disparity so we made the case to the board and then we explain we show the data a couple of board members who belong to that 1% we have a very inclusive board but we also have to include a little bit of the 1% for many reasons. They are people they care those particulars part of the 1% people and they have resources it's a wonderful thing so you know in a in the proper proportion in our case but they said how do I explain to my friends that if they ask me are we not doing other girls that also need help they said we always do every girl that needs help we always do our grant-making spans everything this particular part of our grant-making focuses on additional resources because what we have been doing for 30 years it's a beautiful thing but it's not enough it's not enough so we have done and we are doing this we have done things for older women who happen to be it wasn't a particular racial lens but happens to be that we are all black and Latino and Asian older women who are poor in New York City and so we will go where the data is and I recommend that we all understand that unfortunately it's very easy to make the case when you use data you know and you don't even have to really talk about concepts of justice concepts of human values to some of my audiences donors and others and board members we talk about it that way but it's good to have a menu I have found that it’s really good to have a menu of things because you would be different things take different human beings and as Danielle said you know remember I think you are those of us here in this room who are in school and are looking about how to make an additional difference in the world those of us that are in not for profit or government remember you cannot find irresistible opportunity for people and I really mean that we are living in times when it really matters what we do with our minutes let alone our lives so to offer people as Danielle said that don’t have access to the to the tools to make that difference and where the speaker did by using your platform and offering this opportunity for this and beyond I mean look that's very important to remember you know yes we I have my goals to achieve but remember that the human being over there may not have that ability to see the way that you might be able to invite them to join me so the initiative is an irresistible initiative it is irresistible initiative it's very cheap actually we have to increase the monies or we have to increase the money you know because never we want to transmit to the world we want to begin we began with incredible twenty million dollars in the partnership but never we want to transmit to the world that young women of color don't deserve the level of billions of investments that all other young women of other ethnic and racial compositions have had to be able to have their goals be the most powerful boats rising with those tides.
ARCHANA SHAH: I think I think the way you present how you engage your stakeholders is really helpful especially for our students who may want to go down this path and for their careers or for experiences and just rather than thinking of it as a daunting you know sort of prospect we're really breaking it down into data which always makes me happy is a really accessible way to think about making a case so that's very helpful to hear um I wanted to really just end with one question we can go on forever here but and I do want to keep your respect the fact that the audience has questions but I have one last question the initiative and the collaborative the collaboration and the initiative clearly two big successes and we talked a little bit about legacy or continuation beyond you know sort of this initiative what in your view are some of the biggest successes from the initiative itself as we sit here today ?
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: I mean I think the terms of legislation the fact that we codify some of the recommendations so that it actually lives on has to be acted on and the initiatives we funded with taxpayer dollars this is your money right so you're investing in this initiative too so the fact that we've set aside ten million dollars as a City Council out of our funds this is not something that the mayor is getting is this is something that we have certain pool of money and we said we're going to set aside an amount so it's an investment that council is making you know and we're funding initiatives key to and that speak directly I think that's an incredible success the fact that it's being now mimicked and being replicated in other cities as an incredible you know accomplishment and legacy of the project and the idea of the young women themselves that form this Advisory Committee right and that do continue advisement on the progress of this initiative and it's just all of that I we have very solid successes and it's really proud to see how it's kind of where it's landed from its inception
ARCHANA SHAH: Absolutely, like I said I could ask questions for quite a while longer but I do want to open it up to the audience there is a mic way over there it's if someone has questions please come up to the mic and I would you can address it to a specific speaker or to the panel in general if not I will continue
ANA OLIVEIRA: I just want to do a shout-out to you know Jacqueline (_xxx__) who is there who is the now, yes so I am looking, this is the continuation of our support and Jackie directs the mayor’s gender commission. Commission of gender equity – even better. So we look forward to more support I just want to say Jackie was also in the past vice president of programs in the New York and Foundation and we're very happy that it's happening in this in the future our commitment is a multi-year commitment the New York women’s foundation has committed to a seven year minimum we actually want to do 21 but I had to divide in three parcels of seven for the board so we are in our first parcel and we know that if we can continue to fund and we will the real people who make the change those are the leaders and make the change that our chances of continue to commitment of the city hopefully we want a mainstream in the city budget you know and that would be my uneducated political desire that you know began out of the courageous leadership of the speaker and the support of the City Council but becomes embedded part of the budget.
ARCHANA SHAH: Thank you for that. Any questions otherwise you're gonna be stuck with me oh yeah there's a question would you mind coming up to the mic so we can all hear thank you.
Question 1: I have a question so very often it like the workforce or main like in government it's very often that since we're like a patriarchal like highly like society like how often like do you yet like results of like or comments where people is just an ad or like progress or work or kind of push it down beside and see as something that should be talked about later or just set aside to not be talked about at all [Applause]
DANIELLE R. MOSS: All the time. So I think you know a lot of my former 6th grade students are now in their mid-30’s and I wish that I could say you are going to get to this inflection point in your career and this not going to be an issue. The reality is that people bring their personalities and their issues and all their baggage to work every day so you know that’s what we have to work with but it’s so important to persist to choose your circle wisely and carefully I have mentors that are older than me I have mentors that are younger than me and anytime I have had access to influence or power, I never walked through a door by myself always you bring two people with you. You have a right hand, you have a left hand that’s a way to broaden your influence.
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: Yes it is a patriarchal society so you will continue to find moments where you know we as I said earlier well I'm still the only woman in the room I know the in elected office it's very difficult in this city it’s so progressive and we've done such incredible work in out of 51 members it's only 13 of us are women and there it will probably be fewer than that in this next cycle in this next session coming up in January so the idea of like you know that does matter to gender matters representation matters that's why the voice of a Sonia Sotomayor on the Supreme Court is so important right so these things do matter so we have to make and very be conscious of it. I started a campaign a couple of years ago that shamed people about the lack of women in the City Council right that when we have County organizations or we have unions people entities that get involved in the electoral process it's a tell them you know what it's not just about being good on the issues anymore it's about gender too - right because that brings the native perspective the same way to people of color in a legislative body and the experiences that we bring and the communities we represent that's important in shaping legislation and having government be truly responsive to those we represent and embracing of everyone that we represent so those things are initial that's the only way we're gonna break it down that's the only way that we can become more equitable and more equal as a society so there are times when yeah it's difficult to in this position sometimes that people don't want to listen to you or don't want to take your recommendations or hear your voice and we have a unfortunately situation where we're going to have new council members starting in January who are state representatives right now who are adversarial to women's rights that are adversarial - LGBTQ rights that have not supported the women's equality agenda at the state level this is problematic right for a in council that's really been on the cutting edge of a lot of stuff recently I'm not just saying that because that's me but we've done some really incredible impactful work so you know it's a constant but the idea of mentorship the idea of bringing other people other women you know with you to empower them to help develop their leadership potential and to give them voice you know that those are all things that we have a responsibility to do particularly as we continue to move up in the ranks.
ANA OLIVEIRA: It's the same thing in philanthropy the large foundations are predominantly run by men there's been a little bit of progress in men of color running some of those large foundations but we will tend to run smaller foundations as a whole you know I will tell you as a Latino immigrant it's hard for me to find other Latinas running foundations it's hard for me to find black women Asian women running foundations it's really we don't personally just control but you have influence enormous amount of influence so philanthropy itself is extremely gendered extremely racialized so that's why those investments and we're talking about before are also so small but as you're hearing we take any opportunity and you bring it and make it as wide you know when Danielle says when you walk into the room with two other and we say punch way above you know the size that people expect because that's you know it does persistence is very important and before we begin the program we were speaking with some friends here and we were talking about that this is a time they more than ever you know this kind of partnership this kind of coalition this kind of persistent alignment of our strengths and energies are super important because from all places from the place of logic or the place of justice from the place of size the progressive forces are way bigger than the non-progressive forces it's a question of how do we get organized so that patriarchy and you know other xenophobia you know horrible structures of racism can get demolished they can be they are being they need to accelerate that but we need to continue that and keep the perspective being the truth to be inspired
ARCHANA SHAH: Thank you for that any other question yes please
Question 2: Hello thank you ladies for coming I'm Marlene I'm actually an alum of Pace University class of 2014 I just Kind of want to propose my situation that I’m going through with my organization and kind of get your feedback there may be a question or two in here already so I work for a nonprofit organization Ridgewood Bushman and we have services that are funded by human resource administration so I work for a housing subsidy we work with those who need shelter try to get them into permanent housing through our rental assistance program now the name of the group that we’re under is called the empowerment center with this organization problem is I don't always feel as empowered to empower the clients I'm very you know passionate about working with our clients however there a lot of people who aren't eligible for the program I'm the first contact they see I have to tell them yes or no and it gets really difficult when there are a lot more people that I have to turn away then I can take into the program and there are a lot of women of color who are domestic violence victims or who have just gone through an eviction or their children have been taken away from that where they got recently released from correctional facilities so I think that's very important how you guys were talking about the collaboration with other organizations if there's a ways for our organization to collaborate with other organizations so we have that menu of services that you mentioned that we can just you know if I have to say no I want to be sure that someone else can say yes and the problem is that doesn't always happen we’ll send referrals we’ll have them go to an organization and that organization gives the referral right back to us and say oh no we can't help them you should be a referral for us and I already told them to not eligible so there's a lot of running around and I guess I'm just kind of stuck like how do i how do we like foster this collaboration so we so we know that somebody will say yes to them
DANIELLE R. MOSS: So I would say one of the things that and thank you for that question. One of the things that I got better at was not giving a blind list of community resources because what you will discover is that not everyone will have your values about how the work should happen everyone doesn’t share your beliefs about the value of people in the community. You know start having coffee to assess people's openness to collaboration willingness to partner it's just like I could just give you a blind list of hairdressers in my neighborhood and then somebody jacks up your hair they get a little bit pissed off at me or I could say you know what these three people are really going to take care of you if I can't so that might be a strategy to kind of think about and I think then also the interesting thing about this city is sometimes you can't get all the help in one place yet you have to kind of pull pieces back together you know so to the extent that there's a work group working group in your organization that you can put together to figure out okay let's say we can't meet the needs of this individual or family and XYZ can't necessarily meet all of their needs either what are the three city offices that you're going to need to kind of go through if you could just give people you know give people a sense of what the steps are you know that might be but you know the reality is right that we haven't solved systemic poverty because we don’t want to so you know a lot of us are doing this work within a larger context that you know Nelson Mandela said it best poverty is man-made like somebody decided that someone you know deserves more than they need and a lot of other folks are left to scrape by with whatever is left over and it's you know systemic so keep plugging away you know it's the small things this is one thing you realize as a teacher because years later your students will say remember that time and I’m like really no, I don’t remember the small kindnesses and acknowledgments of people's humanity can be just the thing they need in that moment to figure some of these things out for themselves in a system that often doesn't respect them and so on it's so important how your staff present to folks and how they interact with folks we are we should see ourselves as being in the business of kindness right because you know you know you don't always get their full story but folks have been through some stuff here right and so just that acknowledgement of humanity people will carry that with them for years that might be what hold on to what they don't feel worthy to help them get to the next stage
Question 2: Thank you
ARCHANA SHAH: Question?
Question 3: Hi everyone my name is Liz Alexander my question is how can girls become a part of the Young Women's Initiative
DANIELLE R. MOSS: Send your applications to (GGE?)
MELISSA MARK-VIVERITO: Girls for gender equity is the one that kind of a you know handles the advisory community of young women they probably have they have an application process so they're different cycles where young women come in so if you go online you might be able to find the information girl for gender equity and then get the application and then you can at least encourage other young women there's cohorts we're like the third cohort or maybe second so but yeah that's what I would recommend.
DANIELLE R. MOSS: And if they don’t get in, what can you do in your community to empower our young women. Like us in the sector we can be very proprietary. Like these are my girls and I’m serving two hundred. Child there like half a million girls up in this city and most of them haven’t even heard of our organizations. So always approach your work with the lens that who am I missing that's not at the table that doesn't have a teacher a guidance counselor or neighbor who's steering them towards something that's positive you might have to make it up yourself.
ARCHANA SHAH: Question?
Question 4: Hi I work for a grassroots gender-based violence nonprofit in the Brooklyn area called The Healing Center and we have a great group of young women who are part of our daughters at the Lotus program and who really help put together the New York City teen dating violence awareness walkathon and although we have shown them and they have empowered themselves through the walk we have also wanted to bring a financial empowerment by giving them a stipend unfortunately with being such a small grassroots organization we don't have the extra funding to be able to do that at the current moment so I was wondering if you had any ideas on creative ways on how we can possibly raise the funding or a way to get maybe more the community involved to be able to get a stipend for these young women who unfortunately are very underserved and who come from undocumented families who need that financial addition
ANA OLIVEIRA: So I think that this is our grantee partners the Healing Center? No? Well I think that we can at the New York Women’s foundation connect with you about and those are there like fundraising things you know they will fundraising the things that we can share with you I mean we can go into more details about that so I'm offering definitely we would spend a little time and talk with you about that
ARCHANA SHAH: Okay very, very last question
Quesiton 5: Hi everybody thank you my name is Taisha Jackson I am a Credible Messenger I work for the family court as a parent coach and as a senior parent coach actually and I recently graduated college program that Institute for Transformative Mentoring that supports incarcerated individuals achieving higher learning. and they're so me and myself in some of the college that some of the students that this program decided to open our own business most of us that are in this college program or graduate from this college program are formerly incarcerated but we all work in this justice initiatives so we all work in different parts of our support and families and youth now you know this is something that we just took up the string we say you know we are so profound from this college program it was so wonderful we found healing in it was wonderful for us you know they you know formerly incarcerated at the I’ve been home maybe about 16 years and very proud of myself and proud of the [applause] students, change other people’s lives. We are so excited to make a difference in the world. My question is because we are formerly incarcerated and a lot of doubts, when we ask people for funding, what is your advice? I need your advice, I do.
ANA OLIVEIRA: I like that we’re going to the fund things let’s connect. First of all, there are other leaders like yourself that are women who have I’m gonna say had complex very powerful lives like yours who have created organizations who are very successful and we fund so there is a way to do that there are particular things that we can share with you a little bit about that the foundation is a likely funder of the things projects like that leadership like yours as well as other funders in the city so we can before we leave today, hook up a little more on those practical, how do you go from that passion, vision and leadership to actually becoming an organization right that's what you're asking and how to get funds for that so we can talk a little bit about that did I get it right
Question 5: You got it You got it.
ARCHANA SHAH: Absolutely thank you so much and I do want to be cognizant of all their time a very big round of applause and thank you so much.