Little girl holding parents hands
Courtesy of Greater DC Diaper Bank
Courtesy of Greater DC Diaper Bank
Human Services
At the height of the pandemic, human services organizations showed up on the front lines – and they continue to do just that. As incomes shrank or disappeared, we saw a significant increase in food insecurity (during two weeks in July 2021, 25% of adults with children reported not having enough to eat) and housing instability (especially as the moratorium on evictions expired).
social safety net organizations are rising to the challenge
Health was an obvious challenge as an outsized number of those severely affected by the pandemic were Black and Latino, and mental health issues skyrocketed along with child abuse (though likely underreported) and domestic violence (children and adults with nowhere to go were exceptionally vulnerable). Indeed, the pandemic has left many in a persistent state of emergency. This year, like last year, social safety net organizations are rising to the challenge. Basic needs work – from grocery gift cards to financial assistance – that launched during the pandemic is now incorporated into the missions of organizations that did not previously offer it, either through the expansion of their own work or in partnership with others. The renewed focus on racial equity is also guiding the formation, creation, and delivery of programs. Nonprofits have stepped up to support their neighbors in a culturally appropriate manner while also recognizing capacity in the community – seeing clients as members and advocates in their own recovery and on their own self-determined paths to success. Last year was a hard year, and this year may not be as easy as hoped. But there is certainly a will and there is definitely a way.
human services
basic needs, food, & housing
Child and mother on slide
Photographer Megan Kula, Courtesy of The Religious Coalition
the religious coalition
Forty years ago, a group of religious congregations of different faiths came together to address the challenges of homelessness and poverty in Frederick County. Today, with over 300 persons homeless in Frederick, the need remains a pressing one. Safe, warm overnight sleeping accommodations are provided for men and women, and an emergency family shelter annually serves 25-35 families, providing overnight shelter to more than 100 individuals, about two-thirds of whom are children. All Coalition clients participate in case management to help them exit homelessness. Financial assistance to prevent eviction or secure new housing, pay for lifesaving prescription medications, vaccines, emergency dental care for those who suffer from dental neglect, fresh produce, school supplies – are provided to those who are eligible and in need. A strong advocate for the homeless at the height of the pandemic, the Coalition remains a strong partner and advocate today.
wish list $100: 1 month of utility assistance for a family of 4; $500:
8-week budgeting and financial literacy workshop for 1; $1000: 1 night of emergency shelter for up to 88 persons
Nick Brown,
Executive Director
27 Degrange Street
Frederick, MD 21701
Tel 301 631 2670 ext 105
prince william county community foundation
wish list $100: 8 meals for a family of 4 for an entire weekend; $500: 40 meals for 5 families of 4 for an entire weekend; $1000: 80 meals for 10 families of 4
Dr. Vanessa M Gattis,
President & CEO
PO Box 5148
Woodbridge, VA 22194
Tel 800 455 4773
In Prince William County, an alarming 44% (more than double the national average) of food-insecure children reside in households with incomes 185% above the federal poverty level and are not eligible for federal nutrition assistance. Though all of PWCCF’s programs – in healthcare, education, and wellbeing – are important, addressing food insecurity is central. PWCCF works with individuals, the school system, local businesses, and nonprofits to make it easier for food-insecure residents to acquire and prepare food that is desired, usable, and nutritious while also working toward a food-secure future for all. The most prominent initiative is Combating Hunger on Wheels (CHOW), which supports over 14,000 food-insecure children and residents by placing nutritionally adequate foods right in their hands through mobile distribution and community outreach. Since the start, PWCCF has served over 150,000 meals to 9,000 families. Let’s eradicate childhood hunger in our community.
laurel advocacy & referral services
wish list $100: meals for a family of 4 for 1 week; $500: power restoration for one client’s home; $5000: education program or employment training for 1 person
Mark Huffman,
Interim Executive Director
311 Laurel Avenue
Laurel, MD 20707
Tel 301 776 0442
Serving 900 households each year, LARS is a source of hope and relief for members of the Laurel community who struggle to meet their basic needs. At its Community Crisis Center, help may mean rental assistance after an unexpected illness causes lost hours at work, or a bag of groceries so a family does not have to choose between buying food and filling a prescription. Case managers connect clients to comprehensive social services and work with them to set goals and build skills in areas like personal finance, education, employment, and mental and physical well-being. And for individuals and families coping with chronic homelessness and disabilities, LARS provides subsidized housing and supportive services to get them off the streets and on the path to stability. Support here means a lifeline in crisis … and a path to independence.
new endeavors by women
wish list $100: 4 grocery gift cards; $500: 2 weeks of housing and support services for 1 single woman; $1000: 10 days of housing and services for a mother and child
Wanda Steptoe,
Executive Director
611 N Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel 202 682 5825
NEW annually gives over 150 women and children in seven housing programs a safe place to stay. Homeless for a variety of reasons, the women (single or with families) come to NEW when they are ready to make big changes in their lives. Independent living skills, academic retooling, employment counseling, strategies for obtaining and maintaining affordable housing, support groups, and therapy – all help them regain control of their lives. Drug recovery assistance is critical because most residents have a history of substance abuse. Importantly, they learn how to afford places of their own: many put a portion of their income into an escrow account and work diligently with staff to identify potential housing. NEW women who become self-sufficient remain so: more than 80% of the 3,000 who have completed the program are no longer homeless – an impressive feat.
Berries in wood crate
Photographer Caitlin Tuttle, Courtesy of FRESHFARM
human services
basic needs, food, & housing
wish list $100: matching funds
for 10 farmers market shoppers; $1000: garden and food classes for 50 students; $2500: a week of fresh food for 110 families of 4
Hugo Mogollon,
Executive Director
655 New York Ave NW, WeWork 6th Fl Washington, DC 20001
Tel 202 320 6282
Supporting 200 small family farmers and food producers from the Mid-Atlantic region, FRESHFARM educates the public about food and the environment,
sustains the local food economy, and works to ensure access to breads, meats, dairy, and locally grown products. Offering a match for those using federal nutrition benefits like SNAP, WIC, or Senior Nutrition Coupons, each market also partners with a neighborhood emergency provider to donate leftover food for use in their daily menus. The FoodPrints program helps students develop a preference for healthier foods by growing, harvesting, cooking, and enjoying seasonal produce in hands-on lessons, and parents and caregivers are invited into the classroom to volunteer and learn with their children. The Pop Up Food Hub works with nearly 70 community organizations to provide more than 6,000 children, families, and seniors with fresh, local food. There are so many ways to serve!
wish list $100: 22 sets of school-required headphones; $500: 20 pairs of sneakers; $1000: 50 food coupons to buy fruit and fresh vegetables
Anita M King,
Executive Director
7205 Old Keene Mill Road
Springfield, VA 22150
Tel 703 569 7972
The DC suburbs are some of the most affluent in the nation but there is no denying the pockets of extreme poverty that exist within them. ECHO’s programs address the most critical community needs – often precipitated by lack or loss of employment, relocation, physical or mental health problems, or the break-up of a family. Here, as elsewhere, the pandemic was a precipitating factor: many ECHO clients became unemployed when the hospitality and service sectors were decimated. So, ECHO offers assistance with a utility bill as the cut-off date nears, support for monthly rent when a client loses a job, clothing for an upcoming interview, a gas gift card that lets an employee get to and from a job, essential housewares for a new apartment, and food for a family who has no other resources – assistance that can make the critical difference.
community support systems
wish list $100: propane heating fuel for 5 residents for a month; $500: fresh produce for 150 households for 2 weeks; $1000: food pantry access for 20 homebound seniors
Ethel Shepard-Powell,
Executive Director
PO Box 206
Brandywine, MD 20613
Tel 240 408 1487
In the rural tier of Prince George’s County – home to farms and industrial interests and to families, individuals, and seniors with low and moderate incomes – there is no public transportation and the nearest supermarket is five to ten miles away. CSS is the only social service agency in the area. It operates “healthy choice” pantries where clients “shop” for the foods they choose – both high-quality fresh foods and non-perishable foodstuffs. The pantries also provide blood pressure and blood glucose screenings, information on other community services, a Back-to-School book bag and supplies program, and an Adopt-An-Angel holiday gift program for kids. The Client Assistance Program (and its advocacy component) stabilizes housing as well, providing emergency cash assistance to avert evictions, prevent foreclosures, and halt the termination of utilities. CSS stands with its community because independence and quality of life matter.
Woman walking down warehouse aisle filled with diapers
Courtesy of Greater DC Diaper Bank
greater dc diaper bank
Working with Emergency Diaper Hubs, Mutual Aid groups, and Departments of Health throughout the region, GDCDB distributes diapers to the 44% of low-income households into which children in the DMV are born. Through its Baby Pantry and Nursery Project programs, it also provides nearly $1M worth of formula, baby wipes, feeding supplies, period products, and new baby gear like strollers, car seats, and cribs to help promote safe sleep, play, and travel. In 2020, it served 30,000 babies and over 25,000 families with 6.2 million diapers; the target in 2021 is 7 million. This seemingly simple service enables parents to spend valuable dollars on food, rent, utilities, and transportation. Moreover, diapers are a “gateway resource” that brings families into social service agencies they would not otherwise seek, and where they access medical care, parenting classes, counseling, and more. Simple, effective, essential.
wish list $250: 1 month of diapers for 35 families; $500: Nursery Project bundle (crib, car seat, diaper bag of essentials); $1000: 2 trainings for distribution partners
Corinne Cannon,
Founder & Executive Director
1532 A Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
Tel 202 656 8503

human services

basic needs, food, & housing
family pass
wish list $100: payment of an outstanding utility bill; $500: tuition for a client’s college or certification classes; $1000: emergency rental
assistance to avoid eviction
Debi Sutton, MSW,
Executive Director
2740 Chain Bridge Road Suite 123
Vienna, VA 22181
Tel 703 242 6474
Most people experiencing homelessness in Fairfax are working parents and their children who have fallen on hard times. Family PASS takes the opportunity to support them, working quickly to stabilize their housing crisis and offering long-term, comprehensive support. Case managers provide resources and assistance for basic needs like furniture and household goods and provide financial assistance for rent, transportation, and childcare. Over a period of months (and up to three years), they help each family work toward independence, empowering clients to resolve their own challenges – from addressing their mental health needs to reducing debt – and achieve their goals for education and job skills training. The results are lasting: since 2006, 97% of Family PASS clients have remained housed and self-sufficient, becoming productive members of the Fairfax community – and securing a promising future for their children.
wish list $100: 1 week of groceries for a family; $500: computer classes for 6 adults; $1000: much-needed dental care for a Homestretch family
Christopher Fay,
Executive Director
303 South Maple Avenue, Suite 400
Falls Church, VA 22046
Tel 703 237 2035 ext 118
Well over 1,000 individuals (a third are children) are homeless in affluent Fairfax County. Most have limited education and work skills, chronic illness or addiction, histories of eviction, language challenges. They need rigorously tailored services to succeed and for 70 families annually, Homestretch provides just that: two years of housing, case management, employment assistance, scholarships for training and education, money management and debt reduction, life skills, parenting, computer, and ESOL classes, therapy for survivors of violence, and services for children, including a licensed preschool. Homestretch has a 90% retention rate and a full 95% of graduates remain permanently housed. Adults who were homeless and in crisis become nurses, accountants, teachers, plumbers, chefs, social workers, restaurant owners; many children go on to college. The array of intensive services is costly but has a significant payoff when previously homeless families begin … to amaze themselves.
western fairfax christian ministries
wish list 100: about 62 pounds of food for the Client Choice Food Pantry; $600: rent/housing support once a year; $1000: 3 clients’ utility bills once a year
Harmonie Taddeo,
Executive Director
4511 Daly Drive, Suite J
Chantilly, VA 20151
Tel 703 988 9656
A family of four at 125% of the federal poverty income guideline lives on $33,125, and this is the situation for 75% of WFCM clients. They may be experiencing a one-time crisis, have a job-preventing disability, or employment that offers part-time hours and no benefits. The anchor human services nonprofit in western Fairfax County, WFCM provides both food and financial support – a Client Choice Food Pantry: free produce, meat, dairy, shelf-stable foods, toiletries, diapers (in partnership with the Greater DC Diaper Bank), baby food and formula; help with utility bills (through a partnership with the local utility); and rental assistance. Seasonal and year-round supplemental programs include nutrition workshops, a laundry ministry, student backpack support, and food for the holidays. The goal is to meet basic needs and, when there is a critical financial need, keep clients in their homes.
Young girl and older man taking selfie
Courtesy of Gaithersburg Beloved Community Initiative
gaithersburg beloved community initiative
Situated in the second largest poverty pocket in Montgomery County, over 100 residents in the Asbury retirement community forge intergenerational relationships to promote social justice and improve their own lives and those of local families. With parents and pre-K children, GBCI volunteers develop early literacy through stories and music; use art, literature, and journaling to improve skills and behaviors that contribute to school success for elementary students; build community and facilitate dialogue through the arts with middle schoolers; engage in conversation to help adult language learners improve fluency. GBCI’s advocacy work was instrumental in getting the city council to rebuild a local elementary school, helped develop the tenant organization Safe Places, and worked with it to distribute food during the pandemic. Sharing power and leadership with constituents brings what Martin Luther King, Jr called the “beloved community” together in common cause.
wish list $100: visual journals for 15 elementary students; $500: books and supplies for 1 year of early literacy programming; $1000: first-ever educational trip into the city
Rebecca Cole,
Executive Director
Asbury Methodist Village,
201 Russell Avenue
Gaithersburg, MD 20877
Tel 301 216 4090

human services

children, youth, & families
community family life services
wish list $100: 1 month of public transit to a new job; $500: bedding, toiletries, etc for families in transitional housing; $1000: food, clothing and laptop, for a newly released woman
Ashley McSwain, MSW, MSOD,
Executive Director
305 E Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel 646 336 0855
At the intersection of incarceration, poverty, homelessness, and trauma, there is much work to be done, so CFLS addresses the needs of recently released individuals and their families, with a special focus on women. Short-term crisis assistance (food and clothing) provides an emergency safety net, while long-term assistance (housing support, employment services, mentoring and parenting programs, legal aid, financial literacy training) gives families the opportunity to transform their lives. For women returning home after incarceration (many of whom are single mothers), intensive case management begins three to four months before release and continues as they rejoin the community – meeting basic needs, helping them secure employment and housing, and offering parenting classes, mentoring, and medical case management, including substance abuse treatment. Some arrive at CFLS with a single plastic bag holding their possessions – and leave with a new beginning.
only make believe
wish list $100: tech equipment to further develop the digital platform;
$500: production of 1 movie-making digital film with a kid cohort; $1000: 5 interactive theatre-based workshops
Tamela Aldridge,
Executive Artistic Director
716 Monroe Street NE, Studio #7
Washington, DC 20017
Tel 202 299 0855
The children served by OMB face diverse challenges – some are chronically ill or struggling with psychiatric disorders; others have physical or developmental disabilities; most spend a large portion of their childhoods isolated from their communities. But all can benefit from the therapeutic power of theatre. OMB creates and performs interactive theatre for children in hospitals, care facilities, and special education programs. With the help of local professional actors, children take part in original plays, dressing up and becoming the stars of the show. Each performance is tailored to suit the children’s needs – including sensory modifications for children with disabilities, an interactive closed-circuit TV program for kids who cannot leave their hospital beds, and virtual programming (developed during the pandemic) for children who need it – all free of charge. OMB brings the magic of imaginative play into kids’ lives.
the barker adoption foundation
wish list $100: older foster child outing with a mentor; $500: 4 post-adoption consultations for a birth parent; $1000: 10 sessions for a birth parent making an adoption plan
Sue Hollar,
Executive Director & CEO
7979 Old Georgetown Road, First Floor
Bethesda, MD 20814
Tel 301 664 9664
Serving all members of the adoption circle, Barker provides ethical, child-centered services that fully respect everyone’s needs. Clients are diverse in age, race, religion, sexual orientation, and socio-economic background. Expectant parents with crisis pregnancies access emotional support, housing and food, education about their options, and connections with community resources. (There are no fees and no one is turned away.) Post-adoption training and counseling are available to anyone – not just to Barker clients. Understanding that the adoption of children in foster care is absolutely critical – 25% will otherwise age out of care and experience homelessness; 50% will spend time in prison – Project Wait No Longer helps to find “forever families” for some of the 100,000 eligible children in the foster care system. Barker is always evolving to meet the needs of the children and parents it believes in and serves.
a little girl with face paint blowing up a balloon in a busy room
Courtesy of DC127
DC127 provides parents with the resources they need to keep their families together. Working with church partners, government agencies, and community organizations, it offers integrated support that includes financial wellness tools, job training, food security, stable housing, and mental health services that sustain healthy interpersonal relationships. For children who need temporary placements, through a partnership with Child & Family Services, DC’s only child welfare agency, DC127 identifies, recruits, and trains foster parents so that kids have the right kind of support and protection while they need it. There are over 800 children in foster care awaiting a permanent home because circumstances made parenting them during a crisis impossible. DC127 addresses the problem head-on, helping families to stabilize themselves, mobilizing a team of volunteers around them, and creating lifelong supportive relationships – because parents and their children belong together.
wish list $100: groceries for
1 month; $1000: year-long access to workshops for parents; $2500: wraparound support for a vulnerable family for 1 year
Cynthia Moreland,
Executive Director
1225 Otis Street NE
Washington, DC 20017
Tel 202 670 1145 ext 4
human services
children, youth, & families
leveling the playing field
wish list $100: equipment for 1 student to participate in after-school sports; $500: equipment for a family of 2-3 kids; $1000: equipment for an entire PE department
Max B Levitt,
Executive Director
9170 Brookville Road
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Tel 301 801 0738
A growing income gap in the US has resulted in a growing athletics opportunity gap. While school budgets dwindle and rec centers close, wealthier families spend eight times as much on extracurricular activities as their less affluent peers. Access to sports has become an equity issue. LPF runs an extensive equipment collection program – at leagues, tournaments, community events, and anywhere you can find soccer moms and dads. Donors also drop off equipment at the warehouse and volunteers of all ages sort and take inventory. Program partners – about half are school programs, a third youth/after-school programs, and the remainder youth sports teams or leagues – “shop” for free so kids don’t have to pay to play. PE Packs provide the pinnies, cones, jump ropes, and other essentials that every PE teacher needs. This is what leveling the (sports) playing field looks like.
safespot children’s advocacy center of fairfax
wish list $100: 1 counseling session for healing after abuse; $500: advocacy and crisis counseling for 1 family; $1000: multidisciplinary team training and prevention awareness
Heather O’Malley,
Managing Director
4031 Chain Bridge Road, Suite 201
Fairfax, VA 22030
Tel 703 385 5437
Children’s Advocacy Centers provide a centralized, family-friendly location for the investigation of the unthinkable: child sexual abuse and severe physical abuse. They bring together law enforcement, child protective services, and other professionals to minimize the number of times children have to describe their traumatic experiences. At SafeSpot, highly trained bilingual forensic interviewers structure their questions to avoid re-traumatizing children or compromising an investigation. A multi-disciplinary team (medical professionals, therapists, criminal justice personnel, social workers, victim advocates) decides how best to help the child, and a Family Advocate meets with (non-offending) caregivers to listen and offer essential support. Counseling is tailored to the unique challenges of youth with post-traumatic stress and mood disorders resulting from abuse, violence, or grief. One in four girls and one in six boys will be abused by the age of 18. SafeSpot is committed to being there for them.
the tree house child advocacy center of montgomery county md
wish list $100: 10 magnetic
drawing toys for an abused child to bring to court; $500: medical exam and lab work for 1 child; $1000: 20 therapy sessions for an abused child
William Schlossenberg,
Interim Executive Director
7300 Calhoun Place, Suite 700
Rockville, MD 20855
Tel 240 401 7925
The Tree House cares for child victims of physical abuse, sexual abuse, mental injury, and neglect in Montgomery County – along with their non-offending family members. Most come from groups that have not been well-served by the traditional health care system (they have low incomes, are uninsured or underinsured); children are frequently in out-of-home placements; many families are ethnic minorities or recent immigrants. As a Child Advocacy Center, The Tree House focuses on holistic health: child-oriented medical exams, diagnosis, developmentally appropriate and sensitively conducted forensic interviews, and mental health services designed to help children and families heal. Targeted treatment recommendations are provided by expert staff, and an advocacy program assists with support services, court preparation, accompaniment, and emotional support for minors who are required to testify. To be sure, the challenges here are legion; but this is where hope and healing take root.
a smiling little girl stands next to a smiling seated woman in a court hallway
Courtesy of National CASA & Court Appointed Special Advocate/Prince George’s County
court appointed special advocate/
prince george’s county
For the nearly 500 children living in foster care in Prince George’s County, it often takes four years (twice the national average) to find a stable home. In those years, their Court Appointed Special Advocate may well be the only source of comfort and safety they have. Since 2001, CASA/Prince George’s has provided “best-interest advocacy” to youth in the foster care system by screening, training, and supervising volunteer advocates and promoting the timely placement of children in safe and permanent homes. While attorneys are experts on the law, CASA volunteers are experts on the child and provide the long-term advocacy that children in complex, frightening situations desperately need. For twenty years, CASA/Prince George’s has been the only organization in the county connecting youth with the full circle of support they need and the advocacy they deserve.
wish list $100: 1 personalized care package for an older youth; $500: holistic, best-interest advocacy for 1 month; $1000: matches for 5 youth with screened, trained volunteers
Ann Marie Binsner,
Executive Director
6811 Kenilworth Avenue, Suite 402
Riverdale, MD 20737
Tel 301 209 0491
human services
children, youth, & families
so what else
wish list $100: 1 month of summer camp for a child; $1000: 1 year of meals for a family of 6; $1500: supplies for the food pantry for an entire month
Dave Silbert,
Executive Director
1 Preserve Parkway, Suite 150
Rockville, MD 20852
Tel 240 602 0486
Nearly one in four children in Maryland and DC are lost in the after-school-time abyss. So at eighteen sites in Maryland and one in DC, SWE reaches some 3,500 kids with over 100 free programs and 24 free summer and school break camps, offering everything from expressive arts and healthy cooking to STEM and sports – all interwoven with service learning. In March 2020, together with its partners and teams of volunteers, SWE launched a program to respond to the hunger emergency in historically marginalized communities hard hit by the pandemic. Now a core initiative, it delivers food to affordable housing complexes, homeless shelters, churches, and community rooms. A walk-up food pantry serves thousands of meals each day and stocks baby goods, clothing, books, snacks, toys, and educational materials for children. Serve kids, serve the community, and help kids serve the community: light the spark.
st ann’s center for children, youth and families
wish list $100: life skills, parenting, and job readiness course for 1; $1000: a month in the child care center for 2 children; $5000: residential program for 2 mothers/kids for a month
Susan Flaherty,
Vice President of Development
4901 Eastern Avenue
Hyattsville, MD 20782
Tel 301 559 5500 ext 163
Teen mothers who come to St Ann’s range in age from 13-21. Some are in the foster care system, others are runaways or are trafficked, all are homeless. The residential Teen Mother-Baby Program ensures the health of mother and child while the teen continues her education. Tutoring, GED preparation, internships, and a parenting and life skills curriculum help teen moms move on with their lives. For adult women experiencing homelessness and instability, transitional and supportive housing along with a dynamic employment program supports them in their job search and helps them overcome barriers to career mobility. Serving the children of working families in greater Washington as well as those in its residential programs, the child care center provides a rich learning environment that prepares kids for success in school. St Ann’s is there every step of the way for families that need support.
safe shores–the dc children’s advocacy center
wish list $100: a “take care” bag of new clothing, pajamas, underwear, and toiletries; $500: a month of groceries for a family of 4; $1000: relocation to new housing away from an abuser
Michele Booth Cole,
Executive Director
429 O Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel 202 645 4419
For over 26 years, Safe Shores’ child-friendly approach has ensured that children traumatized by abuse have a safe and welcoming place, their voices are heard, their needs are placed first. It provides a compassionate, comprehensive approach to child victims: sensitive forensic interviews and evaluations, a supervised playroom for kids awaiting interviews, new clothes and toiletries, meals, and funds for emergency needs. The model also includes training for partner agencies and volunteers, prevention training for adults, and mental health assessment and treatment. During the pandemic, an untold number of children spent months in isolation with their abusers. While reports of suspected abuse fell dramatically, parental stress and economic instability increased the risk factors. Now, Safe Shores anticipates a spike in reports of youth who have experienced long-term exposure to abuse and may require more intensive and lengthier support. No child should go through this alone.
a young woman holding a mobile phone sits on an outdoor staircase alone looking down

human services

girls & women

fair girls

wish list $100: prepaid cell phone for a survivor; $500: Street Outreach to share 24/7 hotline info and basic necessities bags; $5000: confidential Drop-In Center support for 1 month
Dawanna Kennedy,
Executive Director
2021 L Street NW, Suite 101-254
Washington, DC 20036
Tel 202 520 9777
FAIR Girls’ Vida Home is the first-ever safe, empowering, transitional home in DC exclusively for 18-28 year old female-identifying survivors of human trafficking or commercial sexual exploitation. Clients have access to food, clothing, and other essentials, case management, structured programming and support, and resource materials to work on their goals. FAIR Girls also addresses the cycle of youth victimization, criminalization, and incarceration by intervening when youth first become engaged in the juvenile justice system. Prevention education and advocacy efforts (both local and national) are key. In the wake of the pandemic, FAIR Girls expects increased demand as the impact of economic instability, social isolation, and the increased presence of youth online comes to light. No one wants to think that human trafficking is a problem here; FAIR Girls faces it head-on, centering the needs of survivors in everything it does.
the safe sisters circle
wish list $100: 4 Lyft rides to and from the court house; $500: 1 month of low-fee therapy for crisis intervention; $1000: 1 community listening session for 20 paid attendees
Alana C Brown,
Executive Director & Founder
1231 Good Hope Road SE
Washington, DC 20020
Tel 202 924 0508
Safe Sisters was founded by a Black woman who saw a cultural disconnect between those providing and those receiving services for domestic violence and sexual abuse. The only organization that focuses on the needs of Black women survivors in Wards 7 and 8, Safe Sisters provides culturally-specific, trauma-informed legal representation in civil protection, family law, and criminal court cases. It also explores non-carceral alternatives for survivors who want safety but favor help and accountability, not jail, for their loved ones. Education is central, with a special focus on young girls and the importance of healthy relationships and the meaning of consent. Embedded in the community, Safe Sisters arranges referrals for therapeutic services, educational/career assistance, and even clothing and food needs. The long-term vision is to change the culture of intimate violence in Wards 7 and 8 through culturally-specific representation … and prevention.
rainbow place shelter for homeless women
wish list $100: 1 night of counseling for 12 women; $500: 1 day of daytime hours; $1000: all utilities for 1 month
Lauren Paiva,
Executive Director
215 West Montgomery Avenue
Rockville, MD 20850
Tel 301 762 1496
Despite broad community commitment to end homelessness in Montgomery County, the cost of housing continues to rise and with it the number of working poor. Many who come to Rainbow would otherwise be sleeping in store doorways, parks, bus stations, or cars – and, the number is expected to rise. Rainbow Place provides adult women with extra support during the hypothermia season. They thrive in the small setting: enjoying dinner and conversation, doing laundry, accessing case management services, and relaxing after a long day. A vital part of Montgomery County’s continuum of care, Rainbow collaborates with the county and local providers to eliminate duplication of services and best serve guests. During the pandemic, it expanded from an overnight to a 24-hour shelter and the hope is to resume this more expansive support next season – because every person is worthy of respect.
close view of an older woman's hands resting on her cane

human services

health, wellness, & senior services


wish list $100: 6 months’ lotion and supplies for satellite locations; $500: scholarship credits for BIPOC students; $1000: 2 refurbished iPads to capture real-time patient data
Cal Cates,
Executive Director
4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 110-341
Arlington, VA 22203
Tel 202 320 7921
Pain, isolation, loneliness, depression, and anxiety make the experience of illness deeply challenging for patients and caregivers alike. But Healwell massage therapy has a significant impact on outcomes for people affected by acute, chronic, and serious illness. Using mindfulness, embodiment, meditation, and other tools, it cultivates kind, skillful, self-aware practitioners and care teams who are equipped to prioritize equitable care for patients who would not otherwise have access to massage therapy – those who have been marginalized by race, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic status, or diagnosis. Breaking down barriers about who “deserves” to be seen and cared for with compassion, and serving some of the region’s sickest, most underserved patients – among them, adult and pediatric oncology patients, homeless clients, incarcerated individuals – these professional and lay caregivers create a collaborative experience of care that ensures equity and humanity.
nueva vida
wish list $100: 10 metro cards for transportation to medical appointments; $500: 10 hours of therapy for 1 client; $1000: 2 workshops on intimacy after cancer
Astrid Jimenez,
Executive Director
801 N Pitt Street, Suite 113
Alexandria, VA 22314
Tel 202 223 9100
Imagine you have no health insurance, no primary care physician, no family or friends nearby – and suddenly “usted tiene cancer” (you have cancer). For many Latinos in the Washington area, this is their reality. Founded in 1999 by Latina breast cancer survivors and health professionals, Nueva Vida has provided support services to over 7,500 clients in the Latino community. The only Spanish-speaking agency of its kind in the DMV, its culturally competent, trained bilingual/bicultural workers offer high-touch, comprehensive programs that serve the cultural needs of this community – outreach and education, patient navigation, and psychosocial support – guiding them through the difficult days of diagnosis and assisting them with life-saving access to treatment and healthcare. Nueva Vida has given “new life” to so many. You can offer your life-changing support.

senior services of alexandria

wish list $100: 10 days of meals for a hungry senior; $500: 5 grocery carts for volunteer shoppers; $1000: 6 months of Zoom programming for seniors with mobility challenges
Mary Lee Anderson,
Executive Director
206 North Washington Street, Suite 301
Alexandria, VA 22314
Tel 703 836 4414 ext 111
One in four older Alexandrians lives alone; most are retired and living on a fixed income; some live in poverty; many have chronic health conditions. For over 50 years, SSA has been there. It offers Meals on Wheels for those unable to prepare food themselves; Groceries to Go for the homebound who can’t shop; Caring Connections to provide meals and a quick assessment for those recovering from surgery or illness. Friendly Visitors address the silent epidemic of social isolation, and a call center manages low-cost transportation for those with mobility issues. Senior Ambassadors (all volunteers) keep their local communities informed about issues and programs important to them and SSA offers educational seminars, in person and virtually, for social connection and enrichment. Keenly aware of the challenges, SSA’s mission is to enable aging adults to live independently, with autonomy, dignity, and self-sufficiency.
a younger woman comforts and older woman she is pushing in a wheel chair

human services

health, wellness, & senior services
shepherd’s center of northern virginia
wish list $500: 1 month of food pantry groceries for residents; $1000: 1 month’s rent for 2 residents; $15,000: part-time Peer Specialist for 8 residents for a year
Carolyn Pennington,
Executive Director
541 Marshall Road SW
Vienna, VA 22180
Tel 703 281 0538
Aiming to help seniors “age in place” for as long as possible, Shepherd’s Center provides life-enriching services at little or no cost. Last year, volunteers dedicated over 5,000 hours to transporting older seniors to doctors’ offices, grocery stores, and vital appointments, as well as making calls and visits to homebound individuals for reassurance and friendly chats. An especially handy volunteer corps assists with minor home repairs, downsizing, and de-cluttering. For those with medical needs, the Center’s staff provides referrals and helps navigate the healthcare system. And to ensure that life stays interesting, retired professionals and other volunteers offer enrichment classes in everything from t’ai chi to world affairs. Support groups for caregivers are available as well. Through the Center, seniors can not only age in their homes but also stay connected and involved outside of them – for years to come.
woodley house
wish list $100: welcome packets for 35 volunteers; $250: text messages inviting 1000 members to take action on a campaign; $500: simultaneous translation of one Zoom event
Ann Chauvin,
Executive Director & CEO
3000 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 108
Washington, DC 20008
Tel 202-830-3524
Before the pandemic, the CDC estimated that 20% of Americans reported mental health conditions; in its wake, the estimate is 40%. For more than 300 of our most vulnerable neighbors – who come from hospitals, shelters, and private homes – Woodley House offers a welcoming home and caring encouragement. It provides residents with safe places where they can work toward recovery, with housing and support services under one roof. A range of options, from short-term residential crisis beds (alternatives to hospitalization) to long-term group homes and long-term supported homes, allows residents to live in highly supervised or more autonomous settings. Clients work closely with specialists to regain the skills they need to care for themselves (cooking, home maintenance, recreation), interact with others, and manage symptoms and medications. For those who have been isolated or ostracized, Woodley House opens up a new world.
wish list $100: snacks, beverages, and candy for ice-breaker conversations; $500: hygiene kits for sex workers; $1000: stipends for peer educators on outreach shifts
Cyndee Clay,
Executive Director
906 H Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
Tel 202 468 6929
HIPS’ “harm reduction” work meets community members where they are – offering support based on empathy rather than judgment. It makes drug use and sex work safer for those who have not chosen to stop or are not able to stop. The goal is to improve clients’ quality of life, health, and wellbeing, advance their rights, and uphold their dignity. HIPS’ drop-in center offers syringe exchange, condom distribution, HIV and Hepatitis-C care, behavioral health, housing case management, and basic needs like food and clothing. The outreach team meets clients out in the community, providing syringe exchange, overdose response and prevention, safer sex supplies, micro-counseling, and connections and referrals six days a week. Led by those with lived experience, HIPS envisions a world where all people use their power to live healthy, self-determined lives free from stigma, violence, criminalization, and oppression.
a young woman of Asian decent stands in a large crowd of people
Photographer Amanda Andrade-Rhoades,, Courtesy of Hamkae Center (formerly Nakasec VA)

human services

immigrant & refugee services
hamkae center (formerly nakasec va)
wish list $100: 1 month of Korean or Vietnamese translation services; $500: multilingual literature to canvass 100 households; $1000: 3 completed naturalization applications
Sookyung Oh, Director
6715 Little River Turnpike, Suite 207
Annandale, VA 22003
Tel 703 256 2208
Some 25% of undocumented immigrants in Virginia come from Asian countries and primarily work in food or service industries; one-fifth live in linguistically isolated households. Community organizing is the key to change, so Hamkae Center fights for immigrant rights and a path to citizenship, expanding healthcare coverage, improving language access to publicly funded services (during the pandemic, few materials were available in a language other than English), and increasing electoral participation of Asian Americans and other communities of color. A leadership development program for youth equips them with the tools to organize and community services offer assistance with naturalization applications and Driver Privilege cards, DACA screenings and renewals, and applications for public healthcare benefits. Hamkae Center knows that racial equity is not just the absence of discrimination but the presence of values and systems that ensure fair opportunities and outcomes for all.
centreville immigration forum
wish list $100: 2 hours of childcare for community meetings; $500: 1 computer to expand access to technology; $1000: 1 skills training course including presenter and materials
Pamela Urquieta,
Executive Director
PO Box 81
Centreville, VA 20122
Tel 703 543 6272
The Centreville Labor Resource Center was CIF’s first program and remains at its heart. It provides a safe location where day laborers and employers can meet and negotiate fair terms (at least $15/hour) – an alternative to street-side hiring that leaves members vulnerable to lower wages and wage theft. Eighty-eight percent of those served are indigenous peoples mostly from Nebaj, Quiche in Guatemala; thirty percent speak the Mayan language Ixil; most have limited formal education. So ESOL classes, and job and financial skills training, mean participants will have access both to better-paying jobs and to the critical community resources like food, medical care, and education that they need. A new Women’s Empowerment Project addresses the unmet holistic needs of women and families – because CIF is always listening to its members, organizing them, and advocating with them for their rights.
torture abolition and
survivors support coalition
wish list $100: 10 days of transportation support for appointments; $500: groceries for 2 families for 1 month; $1000: 1 month of rental assistance for 2 families
Léonce Byimana,
Executive Director
4121 Harewood Road NE, Suite B
Washington, DC 20017
Tel 202 529 2991 ext 5
For individuals fleeing civil war, terrorism, and repressive regimes in their home countries, TASSC offers more than a peaceful refuge. Founded and led by torture survivors, it serves 330 clients (called members) each year, helping them apply for asylum and build new lives. Most come from Ethiopia and Cameroon, arriving with little more than the clothes on their backs. Together with a clinical case manager, they create a roadmap for their journey to recovery, including medical treatment (through on-site care and referrals), bilingual, trauma-informed counseling, and therapeutic activities like yoga, story-telling, art workshops, and more. A career counselor assists with job searches and resumé preparation, and staff and pro bono attorneys offer services to navigate the complicated asylum application process. Most importantly, TASSC restores in its members the belief that they are a welcome and dignified part of the human family.
a white t-shirt with red and green paint reading "My mommy needs a paycheck! #paidleave4dc"
Photographer Laura Brown, Courtesy of First Shift Justice Project
human services

legal services

first shift justice project
wish list $100: advice about on-the-job accommodations for 1 mom; $500: training for medical providers; $1000: legal action to challenge a termination or appeal a denial of leave
Laura Brown,
Executive Director
705 8th Street SE, Suite 300
Washington, DC 20003
Tel 202 644 9043 ext 701
Lack of respect for caregivers in the workplace often leads to job loss and extended periods of unemployment. It affects caregivers across all income levels but has a disproportionate impact on women of color in low-wage jobs, the majority of whom are primary breadwinners for their families. First Shift works with them to assert their rights, stay employed, and maintain their health by fighting discrimination, obtaining workplace accommodations, accessing job-protected leave and DC paid-leave insurance. From Know Your Rights workshops and legal representation, to training and advice for medical providers about employment laws relevant to patient care, to legislative advocacy, First Shift is also at ground zero for COVID recovery in DC, supporting mothers in exercising workplace rights that help them meet both work and caregiving obligations as they return to employment and get their families back on track to economic stability.
dc kincare alliance
wish list $100: 1 4-hour Legal Helpline shift; $500: assistance for a caregiver applying for the Caregiver Subsidy; $1000: legal work to obtain a custody order
Marla Spindel,
Executive Director
1101 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 450
Washington, DC 20036
Tel 202 360 7106
Fueled by high rates of parental incarceration, gun violence, addiction, and mental health problems, some 9,000 DC children live in homes with “relative caregivers.” DC KinCare Alliance is the only organization focused solely on serving these caregivers, who rise to the occasion when parents are not able. They often live at the margins of economic stability yet face an uphill battle in a system designed for traditional families, one that expects relatives to step in without aid. A team of lawyers works to support them (usually grandmothers; often disabled themselves), offering free legal representation and education, as well as assistance with obtaining identification and advocacy in acquiring effective health and mental health care, financial supports, and other services for the whole family. The only organization in DC focused on this population, KinCare helps those who have opened their homes and hearts to children in need.

open city advocates

wish list $100: a month of mentoring for 1 youth; $500: 2 months of intensive re-entry advocacy for 1 youth; $1000: cell service, wifi hotspot, and computer for access to virtual services
Penelope Spain,
Chief Executive Officer
4202 Benning Road NE, Suite 2
Washington, DC 20019
Tel 202 678 9002
Open City Advocates works with youth whom the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services has removed from their families. 100% are youth of color, most have been in the child welfare system, and all are at too high a risk for being jailed, harmed, or killed by street violence. Trapped and often lost in the system, they rarely receive the trauma-informed care and reentry services they deserve. Open City is their zealous advocate. Working with youth in the deepest end of the juvenile system, staff and mentor-advocates visit weekly, develop a relationship of trust and goals for reentry, and represent clients in disciplinary hearings. Open City also spearheads systemic reform efforts to end the revolving door of the juvenile and criminal legal systems, safeguard and expand due process protections, and encourage the individualized, trauma-responsive services that court-involved youth both need and deserve.
two people sit together at a table in discussion

dc justice lab

Nearly every facet of the criminal legal system reveals the impact of racial bias: 93% of people sentenced in DC are Black; more than 90% of searches are of Black people; child and adult corrections facilities are almost entirely Black. Locally, the ripple effects from decades of aggressive policing and mass incarceration – social oppression, erosion of constitutional rights, stagnation or decline in economic mobility, dissolution of family structure, neighborhood decay, and multigenerational trauma have largely been borne by DC’s Black residents. So DC Justice Lab takes a forward-thinking approach. It focuses on writing model laws that will create fair and racially balanced reforms in policing, prisons, and the judicial process. Forging policies that center the interests, concerns, and capacities of native Black Washingtonians also creates opportunities for residents to participate meaningfully, not just in policymaking but across our shared public life.
wish list $100: honorarium for 1 community member to participate in policy development; $500: policy training for Black-led organizations; $1000: civic engagement training for returning citizens
Patrice Sulton,
Executive Director
1200 U Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
Tel 202 681 8783

advocates for justice and education

wish list $100: 1 hour of advice and counseling; $500: a 2-hour Know Your Rights training for 15 parents and youth; $1000: extended legal assistance for 1 family at a hearing
Rochanda Hiligh-Thomas,
Executive Director
1200 G Street NW, Suite 725
Washington, DC 20005
Tel 202 678 8060 ext 205
Over 14,000 children in the District require special education and related services, and while federal law requires states to provide a free and appropriate public education, the District has struggled to do so. These children, often students of color, face unfair discipline and exclusion from school and unacceptable delay or denial of services. A parent-led organization, AJE works to ensure that they receive what they need. The focus is on families who live in poverty, have limited English proficiency, experience homelessness, and have children with disabilities and special healthcare needs. Advice, counsel, and direct legal representation address a family’s immediate issues while training programs educate parents about their rights and empower them to advocate for their children and be peer advocates who can support other parents. Building community power to advocate for children – that’s something we all can support.
washington legal clinic for the homeless
wish list $100: 100 pocket street rights cards; $500: support for 10 co-leaders of Homelessness 101 trainings; $1000: advocacy to help 5 families wrongly denied shelter
Patricia Mullahy Fugere,
Executive Director
1200 U Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
Tel 202 328 5500
When the 2021 Point in Time survey counts 5,111 DC residents as homeless, there is work to be done. Staff lawyers and 150 legal intake, litigation, and outreach volunteers at WLCH meet, now both in person and virtually, with individuals and families experiencing homelessness or severe housing instability, offering direct legal representation at no cost and helping them achieve permanent, affordable housing. WLCH also strives to ensure that housing agencies respect clients’ rights, shelters are well-maintained and accessible to people with disabilities, homeless services provide a safety net during financial crises, and shelter residents are educated about their rights under the law. WLCH typically serves 900+ individuals and though numbers were lower at the pandemic’s height (thanks to a moratorium on evictions), they are expected to surge. You can amplify the call for housing justice – in court and in the community.
network for victim recovery of dc
wish list $50: clothing for 5 sexual assault survivors after a medical forensic exam; $100: 4 safe rides to/from the hospital; $1000: services for 3 survivors
Bridgette Stumpf,
Executive Director
6856 Eastern Avenue NW, Suite 376
Washington, DC 20012
Tel 202 742 1727
In the aftermath of a crime, victims often feel helpless – unsure of whom to trust and where to turn. NVRDC answers the call, offering free, holistic case management, advocacy, and legal support to victims of all types of crimes. It runs the advocacy portion of DC’s Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program, supporting a coordinated community response for survivors including hotline services, transportation to and from the hospital, entry into therapeutic services, hospital advocacy, and referrals to legal services. Staff attorneys provide legal advice and representation for survivors in criminal cases, civil protection orders, and Title IX and Clery Act (campus violence) cases. Focused on survivor-defined justice, NVRDC has walked alongside over 5,000 crime victims since 2012, empowering them to pursue their goals for recovery and redress. As one survivor put it, “NVRDC has been, and continues to be, my saving grace.”
inside a kitchen, with pots and utensils in the foreground and a chef at work in the background

human services

workforce development

la cocina va

Culinary students and entrepreneurs at LCVA are immigrants of multiple ethnicities, African Americans, youth, and veterans. Seventy percent live below the poverty line, and the majority are women, including single mothers, some of whom have experienced multiple traumas. What they share is a powerful desire to lift their families out of poverty and what they want are opportunities. LCVA provides hands-on training in the industrial kitchen and commercial operations, vocational English learning, job-readiness classes, mentoring, and financial literacy training. Certifications lead to paid internships in the hospitality industry and permanent jobs. The new Small Business Incubator (SBI) offers two commercial kitchens, business planning, access to micro-lending, and exposure to distribution outlets. The Community Café and Catering provide employment opportunities for youth and showcase the products of on-site entrepreneurs. La Cocina VA provides food assistance for the community and hope for the future.
wish list $100: study materials for 1 SBI participant; $500: 230 packaged hot meals for the homeless; $1000: 1 month shared kitchen membership for an entrepreneur
Patricia Funegra,
Founder & CEO
918 South Lincoln Street, Suite 2
Arlington, VA 22204
Tel 703 596 1557
gearin’ up bicycles
wish list $100: 1 paid training day for a mechanic intern; $500: 1 single-arm repair stand for bike build clinics; $1000: a community bicycle repair and safety clinic
Julie Meyer,
Interim Executive Director
1811 Rhode Island Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20018
Tel 202 780 5174
Multiple workforce programs address the unjust barriers to success for young Black men but few target youth under 18 and none creates a pathway into the bicycle industry, a field with in-demand jobs. Youth (ages 15-23) begin knowing little about bicycle mechanics but learn what they need to be hired as paid interns who can advance to youth mechanic or to youth shop manager. Youth Nights act as an introduction to the workforce program: the most advanced youth teach neighborhood youth to fix tires, adjust brakes, or build (and earn) a bike from the frame up. The Youth Bicycle Force provides bike maintenance clinics at schools, parks, and community events, with the specific goal of hosting clinics in Wards 5-8. Bicycling is a healthy and accessible approach to exercise, community engagement, and active transportation, especially as we move forward into a post-COVID world.

jubilee jobs

wish list $100: transportation costs to and from a job interview for 10 applicants; $500: 1 goal-setting workshop for 10 young adults; $1000: resumé assistance for 20 applicants
Christine Gossens,
Executive Director
2712 Ontario Road NW
Washington, DC 20009
Tel 202 667 8970
Jubilee Jobs’ singular focus is helping people from low-income backgrounds find jobs. Some applicants have sizable gaps in employment history; some have no history at all. Jubilee Jobs provides a supportive community that guides applicants through the process of securing and retaining a position. This includes resumé development, online application assistance, and mock interviews. Participants are also encouraged to move beyond entry-level employment by pursuing additional training or education. Jubilee Jobs connects individuals to employment as quickly as possible so that they can attain financial stability which in turn will let them address other life challenges. For 40 years, it has helped over 27,000 people obtain employment, and last year alone 241 individuals secured positions, including people struggling with homelessness or returning from incarceration. Work for sustenance, dignity, and hope: it’s a journey worth pursuing – and supporting.
urban ed
wish list $100: 1 month of STEM resources for 60 youth; $500: academic enrichment tools for 10 TechnoCamp kids; $1000: certification exam vouchers for 10 unemployed youth/adults
Roxanne J Williams,
2041 MLK Jr Avenue SE, Suite M-2
Washington, DC 20020
Tel 202 610 2344
In DC’s Anacostia neighborhood, the unemployment rate is 31%, and half of the 19,000 people out of work are young adults. This is where Urban Ed makes its home. Its Career and Workforce Development program offers 12- to 16-week courses that equip adults with competitive skills for high-demand occupations in information technology, cloud computing, software development, and digital transformation. Urban Ed’s TechnoAcademy reduces truancy for high school and middle school youth, requiring school attendance in exchange for lessons in popular subjects like software coding and gaming. These youth then help lead the Lil Bitties TechnoCamp, a STEM-oriented summer enrichment program for kids ages 5-7. Last year, 90% of graduates obtained gainful employment. Urban Ed moved adults from unemployment and homelessness into stability and put young people on the path to success.
young woman wearing a red shirt and tag stand at attention in busy crowd

Courtesy of Avodah

human services

community & civic engagement
wish list $300: Shabbat dinner for 24 Corps Members; $500: facilitator for educational programming; $1000: funds for emergency and essential needs
Cheryl Cook, CEO
2202 18th Street NW, Suite 175
Washington, DC 20009
Tel 917 534 7483
Each year, Avodah Corps Members (“avodah” means “work” or “service” in Hebrew), 24 post-college young adults, may well discover their life’s work. During their year of service, they work at local anti-poverty organizations and participate in intensive educational programs, from trainings in activist skills to workshops on urban poverty. Here in the District, where one-fifth of residents experience poverty, this couldn’t be more important: Corps Members expand the reach of the organizations they serve while strengthening their own resolve to work for social change throughout their lives. Since its inception in 2002, 360 young people have served some 400,000 DC residents struggling with poverty and systemic injustice and added more than $7 million in staff capacity to 58 local nonprofits. 95% of Corps members affirm that Avodah strengthened their commitment to social justice work: there is, indeed, promise for the future.
smithsonian anacostia community museum
wish list $100: rights to reproduce a rare photograph; $500: live captioning for online programs to accommodate hearing impaired audiences; $1000: 3 months of urban gardening supplies
Melanie A Adams, PhD,
1901 Fort Place SE
Washington, DC 20020
Tel 202 633 4839
Museums have an important role to play both in reflecting and shaping the way we see the world. ACM collects and shares the underrepresented stories of individuals and communities. A recent exhibition highlighted the contributions of African Americans who have excelled against all odds – as storytellers, fathers, myth-breakers, and more. Along with partners, including the first all-males-of-color public high school, ACM brought the exhibition outside the museum walls and into the community. Through original research and more than 100 oral histories, a new exhibition documents the food justice issues that define the DC region. Museum programs provide another forum for learning and sharing. Women of color working in environmental justice document their trailblazing contributions while a community garden program connects intergenerational audiences with the land. ACM provides a platform for unheard voices, telling stories that are otherwise just not told.
fair chance
wish list $100: virtual office hours with a specialist for 1 organization; $1000: 3-session consulting engagement; $5000: facilitated nonprofit board and staff retreat for a partner
Gretchen Van der Veer, PhD, CEO
1100 New Jersey Ave SE, Suite 710
Washington, DC 20003
Tel 202 467 2420
Though nearly one in four children in DC experiences poverty, the right interventions increase the likelihood that they will be on track for success. Local nonprofits embedded in and trusted by the communities they serve have the capacity to build lasting bonds with residents, understand their needs and strengths, establish networks of support, and foster innovation. Fair Chance strategically selects nonprofit “partners” (most identify as persons of color) who are ready to take their organizations to the next level but face challenges in raising capital, recruiting and training a workforce, handling regulatory matters, and measuring impact. It works with them (at no charge), developing long-term relationships of trust and building their capacity in organizational and financial management, fundraising, and leadership effectiveness. The goal is always this: build stronger, more resilient community-based nonprofits placing more children and youth on a path out of poverty.
a young boy smiles at the camera while signing a large check board on a table
Photographer Jeremy Rusnock,, Courtesy of The Giving Square

the giving square

If adults engage children in meaningful discussions about their worlds by the age of ten, they are twice as likely to become lifelong civic and philanthropic actors. TGS offers a dynamic civic experience for 3rd-5th graders that develops their philanthropic identity and capacity. In schools, camps, and community programs, the Kids for Kids Fund builds empathy for the needs of others, explores compassionate solutions, and puts philanthropic capacities into practice. Sessions explore the rights of all children, perspectives on the social issues affecting them (health, basic needs, disabilities, racism), and local community solutions. Each group allocates $1000 in grantmaking funds. An intergenerational fellowship program for community leaders (Generation Alpha to the Silent Generation), programs for kids and grandparents, parent/child field trips to local nonprofits, and workshops on developing a family giving plan are all designed to tap the powerful philanthropic spirit within.
wish list $100: sponsors 4 Kids for Kids Fund students; $500: trains 5 new Kids for Kids Fund teachers; $1000: funds 1 grant to a local kid-serving nonprofit
Amy Neugebauer,
Executive Director
5237 River Road, Suite 244
Bethesda, MD 20816
Tel 202 487 3103
one dc
wish list $500: rental space for a community workshop; $1000: supplies for tenant-led direct actions; $5000: meals and materials for a 7-week leadership development course for 7
Shakeara Mingo,
Resource Organizer
1344 T Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
Tel 202 232 2915
Black working-class residents have been disproportionately affected by chronic unemployment, gentrification, displacement, and poor public health services. ONE DC is fighting to change this. Its flagship Black Workers & Wellness Center incubates worker cooperatives, advocates for labor-friendly policy reforms, and champions structural solutions to the city’s Black unemployment crisis. The Right to Income Committee fights for DC residents’ right to good work and stable income: through work-sharing programs and in collaboration with DC Mutual Aid, the goal during the pandemic has been to see that people don’t lose their jobs. The Right to Housing Committee focuses on building a strong, city-wide, tenant organizing movement and combating displacement. Rent cancellation has been a key focus and remains the only solution for survival. Affordable housing, sustaining work, and wellness – all critical to a fair and healthy DC – must be available to all.
jews united for justice
wish list $100: welcome packets for 35 volunteers; $250: text messages inviting 1000 members to take action on a campaign; $500: simultaneous translation of one Zoom event
Jacob Feinspan,
Executive Director
PO Box 41485
Washington, DC 20018
Tel 202 408 1423 ext 1
Justice is a Jewish value, rooted in a history of rising from oppression to freedom. JUFJ stands in solidarity with those who are fighting inequality and racism, ensuring that marginalized people have the rights and opportunities to which we are all entitled. Through community organizing, leadership training, political education, and advocacy, it annually mobilizes and educates some 2,000 volunteer leaders who, allied with local communities, engage in issue-focused local campaigns that lead to systemic change. In recent years, JUFJ has played key leadership roles in protecting critical safety net services, winning Paid Family Leave in DC, fighting for immigrant rights, and winning Paid Sick Days and the minimum wage increase in DC and Maryland. JUFJ will continue to advocate for a just recovery from the pandemic, working for eviction prevention, affordable housing, racial equity, and economic justice for all.
tenants and workers united –
inquilinos y trabajadores unidos
wish list $100: homework help for 1 youth for 1 academic year; $500: Know Your Rights materials for 1 community; $1000: week-long leadership program for 10 youth
Evelin Urrutia,
Executive Director
3801 Mount Vernon Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22305
Tel 571 332 3251
TWU first organized in the mid-1980s in response to the scheduled evictions of thousands of renters in the Arlandria/Chirilagua neighborhood of Alexandria. Developers assumed residents would simply make way for gentrification but instead, they stayed, studied, and organized. A nearly ten-year-long campaign succeeded: the limited-equity Arlandria-Chirilagua Housing Cooperative is owned and democratically controlled by residents, most with low incomes. Organizing work includes housing justice, health equity (increasing access to culturally sensitive healthcare), education justice (ending the school-to-prison pipeline), immigrants’ rights (ending local collaboration with authorities), and police accountability.The goal is to advance social and racial justice through community power building.When the pandemic hit,TWU worked overtime to meet the dire needs of its community, and in partnership with others expanded its work to include direct services that will continue long after the pandemic’s end.