Portland, OR. Artists and arts organizations in Oregon are receiving a $4 million gift from Pacific Northwest philanthropist MacKenzie Scott. Her most recent donations total more than $2.7 billion for 286 nonprofits, most with missions that have historically received little from philanthropy.
Scott is the former wife of Jeff Bezos, and one of the world’s richest people. They were married for 25 years. She was one of Amazon’s first employees and was heavily involved in the company’s early days. The couple are parents to four children.
The donation to the Oregon Community Foundations (OCF) Arts and Culture Recovery Fund will help arts organizations and individual artists impacted by Covid-19, with an emphasis on communities of color, people with disabilities, immigrants and refugees, and rural, LGBTQ+ and low-income populations.
“We’re humbled and grateful for this incredibly generous contribution to support the arts and culture community across Oregon,” said Jerry Tischleder, OCF program officer for arts and culture. “The Oregon Arts and Culture Recovery Fund has provided significant support to the field so far, but the losses and need related to COVID-19 are staggering. We look forward to continue putting these much-needed funds out into the community.”
OCF was among 286 “high-impact organizations in categories and communities that have been historically underfunded and overlooked,” according to Scott’s blog post announcing the gifts.
Scott announced that she has focused the latest giving on two- and four-year colleges and universities with a record of successfully educating students who come from low-income and marginalized backgrounds and to religious and other nonprofits that are focused on working with organizations of other faiths and ethnic backgrounds to bridge divides between ethnic and religious groups.
Scott, a novelist and philanthropist, holds tens of billions of dollars in Amazon stock. In 2019 she signed the Giving Pledge to give away most of her wealth. The Giving Pledge is a commitment by the world’s richest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to giving back. It was started by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett in 2010 and other signatories such as Star Wars creator George Lucas.
In the spring of 2021 Scott married Dan Jewett, a science teacher at the private school that MacKenzie’s four children have attended.
Together Scott and Jewett spent the first quarter of 2021 identifying and evaluating equity-oriented non-profit teams working in areas that have been neglected. The result was $2,739,000,000 in gifts to 286 high-impact organizations in categories and communities that have been historically underfunded and overlooked.
Scott wrote the following: “Putting large donors at the center of stories on social progress is a distortion of their role. Me, Dan, a constellation of researchers and administrators and advisors — we are all attempting to give away a fortune that was enabled by systems in need of change. In this effort, we are governed by a humbling belief that it would be better if disproportionate wealth were not concentrated in a small number of hands and that the solutions are best designed and implemented by others. Though we still have a lot to learn about how to act on these beliefs without contradicting and subverting them, we can begin by acknowledging that people working to build power from within communities are the agents of change. Their service supports and empowers people who go on to support and empower others.”
“People struggling against inequities deserve center stage in stories about the change they are creating. This is equally — perhaps especially — true when their work is funded by wealth. Any wealth is a product of a collective effort that included them. The social structures that inflate wealth present obstacles to them. And despite those obstacles, they are providing solutions that benefit us all.”
Below is a list of the recipients of the donation:
Portland, OR. The Portland Japanese Garden held its first in-person event in well over a year on July 10th. Steve Bloom, CEO of Portland Japanese Garden visited with Lani McGregor and Dan Schwoerer at the reception for special donors. The Golden Crane Recognition Society members were honored for their, “support, passion, and dedication to the Garden.” (Photo credit, Jonathan Ley)
Organizers explain that the event was an open house-style evening with guided architectural tours, music, quiet strolls through the garden, and the opportunity to safely reconnect with friends surrounded by nature’s peace and beauty. At the reception, Steve Bloom, CEO of Portland Japanese Garden told guests about the Garden’s future programming.
Janeese Jackson and Ross Lienhart at the reception which took place in the Atsuhiko & Ina Goodwin Tateuchi Cultural Village.
Tiffany and Eric Rosenfeld stroll through the Ellie M. Hill Bonsai Terrace.
Guests taking in the latest art exhibition, Painting Paradise: Art of Daisuke Nakano, at the Pavilion Gallery.
Guests of the Golden Crane Annual Reception admiring the koi through the Zig-Zag Bridge.
From Portland Japanese Garden:
The Garden sits nestled in the hills of Portland, Oregon’s iconic Washington Park, overlooking the city and providing a tranquil, urban oasis for locals and travelers alike. Designed in 1963, it encompasses 12 acres with eight separate garden styles and includes an authentic Japanese Tea House, meandering streams, intimate walkways, and a spectacular view of Mt. Hood. This is a place to discard worldly thoughts and concerns and see oneself as a small but integral part of the universe.
Born out of a hope that the experience of peace can contribute to long-lasting peace. Born out of a belief in the power of cultural exchange. Born out of a belief in the excellence of craft, evidence in the Garden itself, and the activities that come from it. Born out of a realization that all of these things are made more real and possible if we honor our connection to nature.
Portland, OR. The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon (FCCO) is holding its ninth-annual “Catio” Tour in September. “Catio” is a portmanteau of “cat” and “patio,” which describes outdoor enclosures for pet cats to climb and play in safely, without risk of the animal escaping. To adjust to pandemic restrictions, FCCO has converted the tour to include both in-person observation and virtual self-guided tours of this year’s selections around the Portland metro area.
Catios come in all shapes and sizes, often containing ramps to climb, perches to rest on, and toys to play with. Following a year when many spent extensive time at home working on DIY projects, the trend of creating safe outdoor spaces for cat recreation has increased in popularity.
After many submissions, the nonprofit has selected all Portland-based catios to showcase. Registration for the event is now open here, for all interested in watching cats explore innovative constructions designed for their leisure. The 2021 Catio Tour event will take place on September 11th, 2021. The in-person self-guided tour is $10 and virtual tour access is $15.
The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon has already announced that the event will be happening in 2022, and invites all catio creators to prepare for application. The FCCO has posted additional information online detailing what catios are and can be, as well as a list of resources for Portland residents interested in having their own catio. The list includes Portland-area construction businesses that design and build catios, as well as information and instructions for those who wish to build their catios independently, from scratch.
The 2021 Catio Tour event comes as part of a partnership with Portland Audobon society, as part of their Cats Safe At Home campaign, which aims to “reduce the number of cats living outdoors in the Portland metropolitan area in a humane and environmentally responsible manner.” Catios can assist with this initiative by providing outdoor time to pet cats, while ensuring safety from outdoor hazards, protecting wildlife from cat predation, and preventing cats from running away from their owners.
From The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon:
The Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon is a Portland-based nonprofit that offers spay and neuter services to Oregon and SW Washington. Their services are free for feral, stray, and barn cats, but unfortunately due to the pandemic, The FCCO is unable to offer cheap services to pet cats as they usually would. In addition to spay/neuter services, the organization also coordinates a “kitten caboose” program which has successfully relocated over 1,300 feral kittens into adopted homes. You can support the Feral Cat Coalition in its mission of housing cats, and keeping them safely off the streets on its website.
Portland, OR. The Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation awarded 120 community grants to local nonprofits across its five-state footprint totaling $423.5K. Dozens were given out in Oregon and Washington. The grants represent the first of three funding cycles in 2021. Clark College Foundation (CCF), seen above, was one recipient. The foundation is an independent, self-funded nonprofit that assists Clark College through philanthropy.
Another Oregon recipient was Free Geek. It’s a nonprofit working to divert technology that would otherwise be recycled or thrown away, refurbish it, and give it back to members of the community at no or low cost.
Girl Scouts is another recipient. Above, Brownie Girl Scouts lead a signature campaign to save a local park.
Nonprofits were selected from hundreds of applicants who demonstrated a strong commitment to serving their communities, particularly those focused on reaching low-to-moderate income or under-resourced populations in one of the following eight categories: family engagement and resiliency; financial competency; housing stability and homeownership; college, career or technical readiness; entrepreneurship and business expansion; vibrant and equitable neighborhoods; technical and digital connectivity; and small business support and financial guidance.
“With local community-focused nonprofits, we are able to work together for better,” shared Randy Choy, vice president of community giving & nonprofit partnerships and managing director of the Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation. “Their grassroots efforts are key to post-pandemic recovery, and we’re honored to support their work.”
Umpqua Bank, through the Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation, continues to evolve its community giving strategy and community grants program to reflect a deeper commitment to improving economic prosperity, especially for under-resourced individuals, families, and small businesses. The foundation invests in nonprofit organizations, communities, and leaders to support direct-service programming that incorporates a diversity, equity, and inclusion focus.
The community grants are part of an overall foundation and corporate giving program that has invested more than $12 million since the foundation was formed in 2014. The next deadline for community grant applications is Friday, Sept. 3, 2021. Learn more at www.UmpquaBank.com/Community.
A full list of the nonprofit grant recipients by state is below:
Baker County YMCA
Building Blocks to Success Corporation
Casa of Lane County
Central City Concern Inc.
Community Connection of Northeast Oregon
Community Development Corporation of Oregon
Community Vision Inc.
Community Works Inc.
Conference of St Vincent De Paul Society of Myrtle Creek
Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Southern Oregon Inc.
Corvallis Neighborhood Housing Services Inc.
Drexel H Foundation
Girl Scouts of Oregon and Southwest Washington Inc
Habitat for Humanity International Inc.
Lewis And Clark College
MetroEast Community Media
Northwest Housing Alternatives Inc.
Oregon Tradeswomen Inc.
Portland Homeless Family Solutions
Portland Housing Center
Portland Tennis and Education
School Garden Project of Lane County
SE Works Inc.
Society of St Vincent De Paul
Stone Soup PDX
Winston Area Community Partnership
Yamhill Carlton Together Cares Inc.
YWCA of Greater Portland
Blue Mountain Action Council
Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties
Boys and Girls Club of The Olympic Peninsula
Career Path Services-Employment and Training
Catholic Charities Housing Services
Clark Community College District 14 Foundation
Community Youth Services
El Centro De La Raza
Foundation for Private Enterprise Education
Fusion-Friends United to Shelter the Indigent Oppressed and Needy
Girl Scouts of Western Washington
Habitat for Humanity in Whatcom County
Homestead Community Land Trust
Interfaith Hospitality Network of Spokane (DBA Family Promise of Spokane)
Junior Achievement of Washington
Mary’s Place Seattle
Northwest Access Fund
Overlake Service League
Peace Community Center
R Merle Palmer Minority Scholarship Foundation
Seattle Milk Fund
Second Harvest Inland Northwest
South Sound Outreach Services
Tacoma Farmers Market
The Trail Youth
University District Development Association
Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle
Wing Luke Memorial Foundation
Work Force Development Center A Resource Center for Our Future
Your Money Matters
Youth Eastside Services
Accion San Diego
Aim High for High School
APA Family Support Services
Benicia Community Action Council
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County Inc.
California Association for Microenterprise Opportunity
California Community Economic Development Association
California Restaurant Association Foundation Inc.
Casa El Dorado
Community Action Partnership of Orange County
FOTC — Los Angeles
Fremont Unified School District
Girls Inc. of the Northern Sacramento Valley
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles
Jefferson Economic Development Institute
Junior Achievement of San Diego County
Junior Achievement of Southern CA
Neighborhood Housing Services of Los Angeles County
New Beginnings Housing Foundation
North Marin Community Services
Opportunity Junction Inc.
Petaluma Ecumenical Properties
Sacramento Asian-Pacific Chamber of Commerce
Saint John’s Program for Real Change
San Diego Center for Children
Score San Diego
Southeast Asian Community Center
Standup for Kids
Sunday Friends Foundation
United Way of Northern California
UpValley Family Centers
Workshops for Warriors Inc.
Yuba-Sutter Economic Development Corporation
Boys and Girls Clubs of The Lewis Clark Valley Inc.
Kids Klub Inc.
Moscow Affordable Housing Trust
The Jesse Tree of Idaho
The Momentum Group
Wyakin Warrior Foundation
Arts for All Nevada
Clark County Public Education Foundation Inc.
Junior Achievement of Northern Nevada Inc.
Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth
Opportunity Alliance Nevada
About Umpqua Bank Umpqua Bank, headquartered in Roseburg, Ore., is a subsidiary of Umpqua Holdings Corporation, and has locations across Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California and Nevada. Umpqua Bank has been recognized for its innovative customer experience and banking strategy by national publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Fast Company and CNBC. The company has been recognized for eight years in a row on FORTUNE magazine’s list of the country’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” and was recently named by The Portland Business Journal the Most Admired Financial Services Company in Oregon for the sixteenth consecutive year. In addition to its retail banking presence, Umpqua Bank also owns Financial Pacific Leasing, Inc., a nationally recognized commercial finance company that provides equipment leases to businesses.
Portland, OR. Families are working through the African Library Project to get books into the hands of children in Sierra Leon, Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Botswana, Malawi, and Lesotho. With the help of volunteers, the nonprofit establishes anywhere from 30-60 libraries per year, even during the pandemic throughout 2020. The process to launch a library is simple as the graphic below suggests, it involves gathering 1,000 gently used or new children’s books and making a $500 donation.
African Library Project establishes partnerships with African-based organizations that specialize in education, library, or community development. The partners must be capable of supporting the development of 30-60 libraries per year.
African Library Project works in English-speaking African countries that meet the organization’s criteria for sustainable library development. The nonprofit looks for countries that have a significant need for books and feature political stability, reliable transport of books to destinations, and a network of local organizations capable of organizing books into real, working libraries.
Partners and librarians in Africa unloading donated books. The African Library Project pays close attention to a recipient’s ability to sustain a working library.
Giving children access to books has become urgent because, according to a recent study, separation from the classroom as a part of global attempts to curb the spread of COVID-19 is negatively affecting their developing reading skills. The UN reports a significant decline in literacy and reading ability across the globe.
While all non-profit organizations have dedicated staff that work hard to affect change, most non-profits rely on volunteers. The months of social isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic have taken their toll on all of us. Many remember all the canceled activities and suspended obligations from March of 2020; the wondering in April and May of how long it was all going to last. Volunteer programs were not immune to the confusion of constantly shifting guidelines, nor the concerns for safe and healthy conditions. A report released by VolunteerMatch found that during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, greater than 50% of non-profit organizations were experiencing heavy cancellations from their volunteers. Now that many states are re-opening and attempting to return to a semblance of normalcy, a lot of us still feel trepidation at the idea of entering back into public life. Here‘s a little “How To” courtesy of the African Library Project on how you can volunteer to support children’s literacy, re-engage with your local community, and stay safe while doing it. The African Library Project’s online Resource Center features everything you need to help build a library in Africa. It includes fundraising ideas, book drive guidelines, marketing, and outreach tips, quality standards for donated books, and how to pack and ship your completed library.
Below is an example of a poster:
African Library Project advertisement for the 2021 Summer Book Drive volunteer event.
About The African Library Project:
The African Library Project was founded in 2005 by Chris Bradshaw and her family from Portola Valley, California. While visiting remote villages in Lesotho, a small mountainous kingdom in Southern Africa, Chris was inspired to work toward ending the cycle of poverty and illiteracy when she found out that there was only one public library in the country. She realized the simple act of establishing libraries within schools would have a profound effect on communities as a whole.
We are proud to partner with capable and hardworking organizations and individuals who are dedicated to promoting literacy and library development in Africa. In the United States, volunteers organize book drives and raise funds to ship the books overseas. Once those books are gathered and mailed, the African Library Project relies on a network of dedicated partners within Africa to get them to each community – no matter how far. In addition to selecting and vetting each library recipient, our trusted partners provide training on how to set up and run a library in a rural community. They also follow up to evaluate the use of our libraries and encourage good library practices. The African Library Project’s goal is to make sure our libraries remain active and continue to enrich those who need them the most.
Portland, OR. The American Red Cross is on the ground where thousands of people are impacted by wildfires. Trained Red Cross disaster workers are working around the clock to open or support shelters and evacuation centers. They’re helping out with the nation’s largest fire, Oregon’s Bootleg Fire which started on July 6th and is still burning 28 miles northeast of Klamath Falls. The wildfire is approximately 42% contained as of July 25th and has burned over 401,000 acres. Click here for a link to the current information about the Bootleg Fire.
The National Preparedness Level has been raised to 5, the highest level of wildfire activity. This is the earliest to reach that level in 10 years.
Several weeks ago, experts predicted 2021’s wildfire season could be extremely dangerous due to the severe drought occurring over much of the western half of the country following back-to-back years of record-breaking wildfire seasons.
According to the Oregon State Fire Marshal, over 2,224 people have been deployed to fight the Bootleg Fire including these firefighters from the Sisters area.
The National Interagency Fire Center reports 68 large fires have scorched more than a million acres in 12 states this fire season, including the Bootleg Fire seen above.
The Red Cross urges everyone in wildfire-prone areas to get ready now.
States reporting large wildfires include Oregon, California, Idaho, Montana, Arizona, Alaska, Washington, Wyoming, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Minnesota.
Here’s the information from the American Red Cross about staying up to date as wildfire season progresses:
IF YOU NEED TO GO TO A SHELTER Follow any evacuation orders from officials. To find an open shelter, visit redcross.org or download the free Red Cross app “Emergency” and view open facilities. If you don’t have access to a computer or smartphone, call 800-RED-CROSS (800-733-2767).
We encourage anyone coming to a Red Cross emergency shelter to bring personal items for each member of their family, including prescription and emergency medications, extra clothing, pillows, blankets, hygiene supplies, important documents and other comfort items. It’s also important to bring special items for children, such as diapers, formula and toys, and other items for family members who have unique needs.
In addition to the free Red Cross app “Emergency”, the Red Cross First Aid app gives you instant access to information on handling common first aid scenarios, including heat emergencies. Download for free here or search for ‘American Red Cross’ in your app store.
HOW YOU CAN HELP You can help people affected by disasters like wildfires and countless other crises by making a gift to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Call, click, or text to give: visit redcross.org, call 1-800 RED CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR SURROUNDINGS Keep track of the weather, fires near you and listen to instructions from local authorities. Be ready to leave quickly with your emergency kit. You might not get an official notice to evacuate. Be ready to leave if local authorities tell you to evacuate, or if you feel you are in danger
Shut all windows and doors. Remove flammable window shades, curtains, and close metal shutters.
Move flammable furniture to the center of the room, away from windows and doors.
Shut off gas at the meter; turn off pilot lights. Shut off the air conditioning.
Gather up flammable items from the exterior of the house and bring them inside (patio furniture, toys, trash cans).
Turn off propane tanks. Move propane BBQ appliances away from structures.
Don’t leave sprinklers on or water running, they can affect critical water pressure.
Back your loaded car into the driveway and keep all doors and windows closed.
Ensure your emergency supplies kit is in your vehicle.
Locate your pets and take them with you.
RED CROSS WILL PROVIDE SAFE SHELTER The Red Cross will continue to make sure people have a safe place to stay, food to eat, and resources to help them recover after a disaster, a critical part of the Red Cross mission, but how we support sheltering efforts may be different in each community, depending on local emergency plans and the scale of the disaster. In most cases this year, we will open group shelters. However, in some communities, hotels may still be more appropriate if the risk of COVID-19 is particularly high. The Red Cross will also keep many of the safety precautions implemented in 2020. These include masks, health screenings, enhanced cleaning procedures, and encouraging social distancing.
From the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds, and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members, and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
CORPORATIONS, FOUNDATIONS AND ORGANIZATIONS HELPThe generous donations from members of the Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program (ADGP) and the Disaster Responder Program enable the American Red Cross to prepare communities for disasters big and small, respond whenever and wherever disasters occur, and help families during the recovery process.
ADGP $1 Million members are: Amazon; American Airlines; Anheuser-Busch Foundation; Anthem Foundation; Bank of America; Caterpillar Foundation; Costco Wholesale; Delta Air Lines; Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation; FedEx; The Home Depot Foundation; Latter-day Saint Charities; Lilly Endowment Inc.; Microsoft Corp.; Nationwide Foundation; State Farm; Truist Foundation; VSP Global; Walmart and the Walmart Foundation; and Wells Fargo.
ADGP $500,000 members are: Altria Group; Aon; Capital One; Citi Foundation; The Clorox Company; The Coca-Cola Foundation; Delta Dental Community Care Foundation; Edison International; Energy Transfer/Sunoco Foundation; Ford Motor Company; Fox Corporation; General Motors; HCA Healthcare; International Paper; The J.M. Smucker Company; Johnson Controls Foundation; The Kroger Co. Foundation; LHC Group; Lockheed Martin Corporation; Lowe’s Companies, Inc.; Mastercard; Merck Foundation; Mondelēz International Foundation; New Balance Foundation; PayPal; PepsiCo Foundation; Salesforce; Southeastern Grocers Home of Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket and Winn-Dixie; Stanley Black & Decker; The Starbucks Foundation; Takeda Pharmaceutical; Target; The TJX Companies, Inc.; Toyota; United Airlines; UPS; The USAA Foundation, Inc.; Visa Foundation; The Walt Disney Company; and The Wawa Foundation.
Disaster Responder Program members are: 7-Eleven Cares Foundation; Adobe; Alliance Data; American Express; Ameriprise Financial, Inc.; Assurant; AT&T; AvalonBay Communities, Inc.; Avangrid Foundation; The Ball Foundation; Barclays; Big 5 Sporting Goods; CarMax; Choice Hotels International; Cisco Foundation; CNA Insurance; The Coca-Cola Company; CSX; Darden Foundation; The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation; Discover; Duke Energy; Equitable; FirstEnergy Foundation; Grainger; Harbor Freight Tools Foundation, LLC; Hewlett Packard Enterprise Foundation; HP Foundation; Humble Bundle; Kaiser Permanente; Kimberly-Clark Corporation; The Kraft Heinz Company Foundation; Lenovo; Liberty Mutual Insurance; Marathon Petroleum Foundation, Inc.; Northrop Grumman; Northwestern Mutual and the Northwestern Mutual Foundation; Old Dominion Freight Line; Procter & Gamble; Prudential Financial; Raytheon Technologies; Rodan + Fields Prescription for Change Foundation; Ross Stores Foundation; Ryder System, Inc.; San Manuel Band of Mission Indians; Security Finance’s Lending Hand Foundation; Southwest Airlines; U-Haul International; and U.S. Bank Foundation.
Portland, OR. The Home Builders Foundation (HBF) raised a record amount to help build and renovate shelters for those experiencing homelessness throughout the Portland metro area. The Building Hope Gala & Auction presented by California Closets was held on June 19th at Tumwater Vineyard in West Linn. Led by Honorary Chairs Gordon Root (seen above with his wife Tracy) and Rick Waible of Stafford Land Company, the benefit raised a record $510,000. (Photo credit, Andrea Lonas Photography) Covid-19 restrictions were lifted in Clackamas County just a week before the scheduled gala, so organizers were able to host 230 attendees outside for an evening of fundraising.
A group of attendees & volunteers pose at the photo booth during the Building Hope Gala & Auction.
Guests mingle during the Directors Mortgage VIP Reception.
The group from Ridge Crest Custom Cabinetry is all smiles during dinner.
Attendees Mike Rowe, Liz Rowe, & Ed Becker take in the beauty of Tumwater Vineyard on a warm summer evening.
HBF Board Vice President Ryan Boatsman of Delap LLP supports the nonprofit with a donation during the special appeal.
During the planning process, HBF event organizers decided to develop both an in-person event that was outdoors, as well as a virtual event as a backup plan and an option for those not comfortable attending events yet. The HBF staff and committee got to work and eventually held one of Portland’s first large hybrid fundraising events of the season.
In-person attendees had the opportunity to bid on live auction packages that included home renovation packages donated by industry members. These packages included a kitchen renovation from Macadam Floor & Design and Standard TV & Appliance, which sold as the Golden Ticket raffle prize and was donated again for the live auction, and a package to beautify the exterior of the home from Oregon Outdoor Lighting & The Wall. Other live auction packages included unique experiences such as a bird hunt with Nate Bond & Brian Boggs of Ridge Crest Custom Cabinetry, a stay in the heart of wine country (which sold twice!), a whiskey collection put together by HBF’s Board of Directors, and the extremely popular Bucket List Trip, which sold 34 times and allowed each purchaser to travel to Iceland, Costa Rica or Tuscany.
While the in-person guests raised their paddles in support of Home Builders Foundation, virtual guests were treated to a special red carpet presentation with interviews from key sponsors and HBF’s non-profit shelter partners, as well as exclusive performances by Aaron Meyer, concert rock violinist formerly of Pink Martini.
After the conclusion of the live auction and the red carpet presentation, both in-person and virtual attendees learned about a life-changing shelter Home Builders Foundation helped build for the non-profit A Village For One, which dreamed of a healing home for young women escaping sexual exploitation. HBF partnered with Jim Standring of Westland Industries as Builder Captain to construct Anisa’s Place, a six-bedroom home for these young women. Cassie Trahan of A Village For One shared with the audience the importance of shelters like theirs and the impact Home Builders Foundation and its partners in the home building industry.
The audience responded by raising their paddles high. Right in the middle of the special appeal, to the audiences’ surprise, Gordon Root took the stage and announced a $50,000 match from the Jack & Wilma Root Trust. Both in-person and virtual attendees answered by giving $58,000 in a matter of minutes, after which Gordon grabbed the mic and announced yet another surprise gift of $15,000 from Chad E. Davis Construction. In total, the special appeal garnered $181,000 in donations.
Funds raised at the Building Hope Gala & Auction benefit Home Builders Foundation, a Portland-based nonprofit that builds and remodels shelters for those experiencing homelessness in the Portland metro area. Home Builders Foundation focuses on building and renovating shelters for those who are most vulnerable when homeless, including families with children, youth, and domestic violence survivors. Home Builders Foundation completes shelter builds and renovations by leveraging donations from companies in the home building industry and providing cash grants to shelter providers to complete projects.
Home Builders Foundation would like to say a special thank you to Gordon Root and Rick Waible for the incredible leadership and support provided to the event. Home Builders Foundation would also like to thank all of the attendees, donors, volunteers, and the 2021 Auction Committee for their contributions to the event.
Home Builders Foundation would like to recognize all of the companies that sponsored this year’s Building Hope Gala & Auction: California Closets, Standard TV & Appliance, Builders FirstSource, Performance Insulation, Directors Mortgage, Milgard Windows & Doors, OrePac, NW Natural, Berkshire Hathaway, Metropolitan Land Group, Pacific Crest Building Supply, Lakeside Lumber, Adair Homes, Banner Bank, Eastbank Mortgage, First American Title, Holt Homes, IWP, Lennar, The Oregonian, Pamplin Media Group, PayneWest Insurance, Richmond American Homes, Royal Restrooms, and Tiffany Home Design.
The Home Builders Foundation, established in 1997, is the charity of choice for the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland. Their mission is to build transitional shelter for families and individuals experiencing homelessness in our community and provide construction related educational opportunities for individuals interested in pursuing a career in the home building industry. Visit www.BuildHopePDX.org for more info.
Beaverton, OR. Led by the Beaverton Arts Foundation, the campaign to build the Patricia Reser Center for the Arts “The Reser” has concluded. The final push raised more than $12 million of the $52 million needed to build the center. Supporters exceeding the original fundraising goal by more than $1 million. The center is 75% finished and engineers are checking out the acoustics in its 550-seat theater with the help of local trumpet player, Justin Copeland. The Patricia Reser Center for the Arts will open in the spring of 2022.
Located between SW Cedar Hills Boulevard and SW Hall Boulevard, the facility will include the 550-seat theater (seen above), and an art gallery, rehearsal, workshop and meeting space, lobby, outdoor plaza, and adjacent parking structure.
An architectural rendering shows an interior space called The Lab. The Reser is the first performing arts center of its kind to be built in the Portland metro area in more than 30 years.
In the video below, administrators Lani Faith and Chris Ayzoukian take you inside the building to catch a glimpse of the ongoing construction.
A bit of History: On July 17, 2018, the Beaverton Arts Foundation announced a personal pledge of $13 million to the project. With this news also came the official name of the facility, the Patricia Reser Center for the Arts. This transformative pledge from Pat Reser provided nearly one-third of the initial $48.2 million needed to build The Reser. With increased construction costs due to COVID, the goal grew by nearly $4 million to $52 million. More than 960 donors came together to help the campaign close this gap and exceed its fundraising goal by more than $1 million.
Chris Ayzoukian of Patricia Reser Center for the Arts, Beaverton Mayor Denny Doyle, lead donor Pat Reser and Lani Faith of the Beaverton Arts Foundation at the groundbreaking ceremony in November of 2019.
“When we officially embarked on this undertaking several years ago, I could not have imagined the incredible level of support we would receive from our community and beyond,” said Pat Reser, who serves as the chair of the campaign for The Reser. “Now, to see the campaign reach its conclusion, I’m so thankful for our volunteers, public officials, community, and our Executive Director, Lani Faith, who served as our North Star in leading our efforts to raise the private funding needed. I’m proud to see this community dream come to life, not just for the arts, but as a place to foster joy and connection for Beaverton and the region.”
Here’s some history about the fundraising efforts:
Additional lead donations include $1 million from Arlene Schnitzer and Jordan Schnitzer through The Harold & Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation, $1 million from Gene and Lindi Biggi of Beaverton Foods, $1 million from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, $750,000 from Cambia Health Solutions, $630,000 from the Washington County Visitors Association and $500,000 from Todd Baker of Hillsboro’s Baker Rock Resources.
In December of 2018, the Oregon Community Foundation awarded The Reser with a matching grant of $250,000, for new donors from Washington County and – 18 months later – the Oregon Lottery allocated $1.5 million to the project via the Cultural Advocacy Coalition. While the lottery funds were later rescinded due to complications related to the pandemic, the State reinstated the investment via House Bill 5006 and the American Rescue Plan in June of this year. This grant closed the gap on the private fundraising goal and helped cover the additional construction costs incurred due to the impact of the COVID.
Additionally, in early 2021, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the U.S., awarded The Reser a 3:1 matching grant totaling $250,000, generating $1 million for The Reser. The recognition from NEH represents the largest national gift to The Reser, as well as the first dedicated to the humanities. For a comprehensive list of supporters, see here: centerfortheartscampaign.org/supporters/.
“I’ve long been a champion for the arts because they enrich our lives and improve our communities,” said U.S. Representative of Oregon’s first district Suzanne Bonamici, who serves as co-chair of the STEAM Caucus, as well as a member of the Congressional Arts Caucus and Congressional Humanities Caucus. “The arts inspire creativity and learning, broaden our horizons, and boost our economy. The pandemic has reduced many funding sources for the arts, so I was especially thrilled to help the Beaverton Arts Foundation secure a federal grant for The Reser. The Reser will serve as a place of inspiration and opportunity for our growing community, and I applaud the efforts of the Beaverton Arts Foundation to increase access to the arts for everyone.”
The Reser launched its Fill the Seats campaign in November 2019, honoring designated $1,000 donors with a name plaque on one of the seats within the theater. The Reser sold 463 seats, raising $470,500 with only 60 remaining. In February of 2021, the campaign launched its $100K in 100 Days program to raise the last $100,000 to top off the community phase of the campaign, generating more than 400 donations, which ultimately raised nearly $650,000.
By The Numbers:
Of the funds raised in support of The Reser, there were more than 960 total donors. Businesses gave nearly $1.1 million, individuals granted nearly $5 million and $6.1 million was provided by foundations and other funders. Gifts to the campaign ranged from $2 to $1.5 million and more than $1.8 million in funds were secured from out-of-state donors, including those from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Georgia, Florida, Ohio, Montana, Kansas, Texas, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, Nevada, California and Washington. The campaign raised $12,206,975, $1,027,425 above the goal.
The Reser celebrated its groundbreaking in fall of 2019, followed by its topping out ceremony nearly a year later in the fall of 2020. Construction continued – with safety measures in place – throughout COVID, keeping the progress moving forward. In June of this year, construction reached 80 percent completion with the building estimated to be finished in fall 2021.
Nestled near The Round between SW Cedar Hills Boulevard and SW Hall Boulevard, The Reser will include a 550-seat theater, art gallery, rehearsal, workshop and meeting space, lobby, outdoor plaza and adjacent parking structure. The project’s design and construction team includes Skanska USA Building Inc., Gerding Edlen and OPSIS Architecture.
About the Patricia Reser Center for the Arts
The Patricia Reser Center for the Arts will be the first performing arts center of its kind to be built in the Portland-metro area in more than 30 years. Nestled near to The Round between SW Cedar Hills Boulevard and SW Hall Boulevard, the facility will include a 550-seat theater, art gallery, rehearsal, workshop and meeting space, lobby, outdoor plaza and adjacent parking structure. With the Beaverton Arts Foundation serving as its fundraising partner, The Reser will feature innovative offerings in the performing arts – theater, music and dance – serving as a beacon for civic engagement, creative learning and greater social cohesion. For more information, please visit: centerfortheartscampaign.org and beavertonoregon.gov/prca.
Portland, OR. Focus on Youth is a nonprofit combining sustainable gardening and photography with hands-on learning. Homeless and at-risk youth learn leadership, responsibility, gardening, healthy eating, and photography as they “grow their own food” and photograph their achievements at Sunflower Organic Farm. The nonprofit grows and donates produce to local food pantries serving children and families to help alleviate community hunger.
Currently, Focus on Youth is operating a flower stand to raise needed funds. It’s located at 5901 SW Garden Home Road, Portland, OR 97219. The flower stand is open Saturday and Sunday, 8 am to noon. It’s selling small flower bouquets for $10 and large for $20.
By raising money, it is able to purchase essential equipment/supplies for the farm and expand to grow more produce. According to the advocates, “Covid-19 is putting thousands of people in our community at risk for food insecurity and as a result, making them vulnerable to malnutrition and serious illness. Closure of restaurants has reduced food donations to shelters and Food Pantries exactly when the need for food donations has increased.”
You can visit the flower stand any time because it has an ‘honesty box’, so supporters can purchase bouquets when flower stand volunteers aren’t present. Focus on Youth accepts both cash and digital payment for flowers.
The mission of Focus on Youth is to nurture creativity, promote self-esteem, cultivate leadership, foster independence, encourage success, and profoundly transform the lives of homeless and at-risk youth.
Participants take away positive experiences, food, pictures of what they have achieved, and a wealth of knowledge about sustainable gardening.
Volunteers man the flower stand.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, volunteers have spread 114 tons of organic compost and tripled the size of our garden with the help of our volunteers.
Focus on Youth works in partnership with youth shelters and Neighborhood House to put food on the tables of vulnerable community members.
Here’s a flyer with more info on the flower stand:
Below is a video about the program:
From Focus on Youth:
Our greatest need is for volunteers to help in our garden. Sunflower Farm is conveniently located on a one-acre parcel in Southwest Portland. If you would like to lend a hand with harvesting, planting, weeding, or mulching garden pathways please fill out the volunteer form (http://tiny.cc/Foy) or call/text 503-341-6878. We are open seven days a week and provide gloves and tools. No gardening experience is needed, we will teach you how to grow healthy, delicious organic fruit and vegetables.
You can also help by donating on our website using PayPal or through the Givebutter platform, (givebutter.com/foy). Thank you!
Don’t forget to support Focus on Youth this summer! Select Focus on Youth via Amazon Smile to turn a percentage of your purchases into a donation.
Since 2003, Focus on Youth has provided hands-on learning, sustainable gardening, healthy cooking classes, science and photography classes, and mentoring for over 16,000 at-risk and homeless youth. Hunger in Oregon has spiked 18% in the last two years, and one in five homeless youth report going hungry each week. Our program, Seeds of Hope is decreasing food insecurity and improving nutrition for homeless youth by teaching them where food comes from, how to grow food through hands-on activities, and the importance of eating fresh produce.
Our students grew over a ton of organic fruit and vegetables, plus they donated thousands of pounds of produce to low-income seniors through the Neighborhood House food pantry. Seeds of Hope connects youth with nature and the joy of growing their own food while giving them the ability to take on leadership roles within the community by donating food to help low-income seniors and families.
Focus on Youth is fostering community building through our partnerships with nonprofits such as New Avenues for Youth, Outside In, Neighborhood House, Community Legacy Program of Our United Villages, Hands-on Portland, Portland Service Program, and hundreds of community volunteers.
Portland, OR. After a pandemic-induced shift to virtual and filmed performances, Portland Center Stage (PCS) aims for a major comeback to live theater with the new 2021-2022 season and JAW New Play Festival. One of the city’s most prominent theater groups, Portland Center Stage (PCS) has officially announced its first live theater events since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo credit, Joan Marcus) With the state reopening following a full lift on state pandemic restrictions by Gov. Kate Brown on June 30th, the doors to the historic theater, The Armory, will finally reopen to the public for the 2021 JAW New Play Festival. The festival is free to attend and takes place from July 23-25th, with both in-person and virtual attendance options being offered.
The 2021-2022 season is a seven-show lineup that will kick off in October. It features four plays that had been previously scheduled, including the return of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which was canceled a week after it opened because of the pandemic, along with the celebrated production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch and August Wilson’s iconic story of freedom, justice, and salvation, Gem of the Ocean.
Three newly announced titles will provide audiences with the opportunity to revel together including Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Freestyle Love Supreme and Rent.
This year’s JAW features Inda Craig-Galván’s A Hit Dog Will Holler, Ty Defoe’s Trans World, Rinne Groff’s The Red Beads (based on The Singer of His Sorrows by Osip Dymov), and Kate Hamill’s Ms. Holmes & Ms. Watson – Apt. 2B. Five local teen playwrights have also been commissioned to develop short scripts that will be read as part of the festival: Natalia Bermudez, Moss Johnson, Aaron Leonard-Graham, Becca McCormick, and Nevaeh Warren.
A 2016 JAW Workshop
Directors say PCS 2021-2022 season is designed to lift and nourish spirits with energetic, imaginative worlds on stage. “This powerhouse lineup of plays and musicals resonates deeply for me as we create a space on stage to examine resilience within the framework of bright theatricality, sharp humor, and full-hearted connection,” Artistic Director Marissa Wolf said.
Freestyle Love Supreme Anthony Veneziale, Aneesa Folds, Arthur Lewis, James Monroe Iglehart, and Chris Sullivan in “Freestyle Love Supreme” at The Booth Theatre. Photo by Joan Marcus.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Select cast members in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time from Portland Center Stage’s 2020 production. Photo by Owen Carey/Courtesy of Portland Center Stage at The Armory
Hedwig and the Angry Inch Maria Del Castillo, Jasmine Linée Wood, Nsayi Matingou, Delphon “DJ” Curtis Jr. and Ithica Tell in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” from Portland Center Stage’s 2019-2020 season. Photo by Owen Carey/Courtesy of Portland Center Stage at The Armory
TICKETS AND INFORMATION The JAW New Play Festival events are FREE and can be attended in person at The Armory, or online. Audiences are encouraged to reserve their general admission tickets in advance for the JAW Play Readings; in-person walk-ups will be welcome based on availability. The Press Play performances surrounding the readings don’t require a ticket. Community Artist Labs are in-person only. Masks will be required in all areas, except for those at seated tables, enjoying a beer in the mezzanine bar.
Portland Center Stage is among the top 20 regional theaters in the country. Established in 1988 as a branch of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the company became independent in 1994. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Marissa Wolf and Managing Director Cynthia Fuhrman, the company produces a mix of classic, contemporary, and world premiere productions, along with a variety of high-quality education and community programs. As part of its dedication to new play development, the company has produced 28 world premieres, many of which were developed at its new works festival, JAW.
Portland Center Stage’s home is at The Armory, a historic building originally constructed in 1891. After a major renovation, The Armory opened in 2006 as the first building on the National Register of Historic Places, and the first performing arts venue in the country, to achieve a LEED Platinum rating. Portland Center Stage is committed to identifying and interrupting instances of racism and all forms of oppression, through the principles of inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA).
Learn more at pcs.org/idea. Portland Center Stage’s 2021-2022 season is funded in part by Season Superstars the Regional Arts and Culture Council and the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation; Supporting Sponsors the Oregon Arts Commission, a state agency funded by the state of Oregon and the National Endowment for the Arts, and US Bank; and Producing Sponsors Ellyn Bye, Ray and Bobbi Davis, and Ronni LaCroute
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