“No one who achieves success does so without the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.”
– Alfred North Whitehead
Thanksgiving is a time to gather, reflect and celebrate our many blessings. This Thanksgiving, I am especially grateful to serve in a role that allows me to live out my purpose every day: To make a difference in the lives of others. I am thankful for my talented Board of Trustees and bi3 colleagues committed to measurably improving health and reducing health disparities. bi3 is not big enough to transform health alone; thus, I appreciate the opportunity to partner with community-based organizations and local, regional and national funders to fuel innovation and accelerate health equity.
Earlier this month, we advanced our racial and health equity journey at our annual Board retreat and made plans to strengthen our health advocacy efforts. Our Board gained a deeper appreciation for bi3’s leadership in the trust-based philanthropy space and how they can personally engage in trust-based practices. The Board also heard from one of our partners, who shared her experience working with bi3 and its trust-based philanthropy approach. We were so fortunate to have several of our grant partners join us at the retreat to share their passion and knowledge with our Board members, who, in turn, left better informed and inspired by the work happening to improve health in our community.
I continue to be grateful to our bi3 team for committing time and resources to share our successes and lessons learned with other funders across the country.
My team and I are thankful for the feedback from past and current grantees, who encouraged us to increase our investments in Black-led and grassroots organizations closest to the problems. We responded by establishing a $1 million Health Equity Fund at United Way’s Black Empowerment Works and, most recently, joining forces with Greater Cincinnati Foundation, City of Cincinnati and Interact for Health to create the Boots on the Ground Fund.
Together, we are working towards the day every person has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible.
Wishing a healthy and happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
President, Bethesda Inc.
bi3 partners with Greater Cincinnati Foundation, City of Cincinnati and Interact for Health to launch Boots on the Ground Fund
bi3 is investing $100,000 to strengthen the capacity of small, community-based organizations to drive equitable change through the Boots on the Ground Fund. The fund, established by Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) and the City of Cincinnati, will provide capacity-building grants of up to $25,000 each, enabling grantees to build and grow their organizational effectiveness. Historically, these resources have been inaccessible for small, grassroots organizations, especially those led by people of color.
Through the fund, bi3 will support four to seven organizations that provide innovative, community-based solutions to our region’s growing mental health crisis.
GCF will announce Boots on the Ground Fund grants in early December. They anticipate awarding about $600,000 in grants in the first year.
bi3 shares lessons learned with funders across the country
bi3 presented at conferences across the country earlier this month, sharing our successful trust-based approach and lessons we’ve learned from our work in the birth equity space and health policy advocacy.
At Philanthropy Ohio’s Philanthropy Forward in Cleveland, Jill Miller, bi3 President & CEO, and Jennifer Zimmerman, bi3 VP of Evaluation & Impact, led sessions on trust-based philanthropy, capacity building and advocacy.
In addition to sharing best practices, it was an honor to learn from other incredible leaders in this network of funders. Attendees included Lynanne Gutierrez of our partner Groundwork Ohio, john a. powell of the Othering & Belonging Institute at the University of California, Berkeley, and many more.
In Atlanta, bi3 joined forces with Grantmakers in Health, the W.J. Kellogg Foundation, March of Dimes and others to sponsor the Birth Equity Funders’ Summit where more than 100 funders convened over the pressing need to improve health outcomes for parents and babies.
bi3’s Kiana Trabue, VP of Strategic Partnerships, bi3 Committee Chair Melissa Thomasson, Ph.D. and Cradle Cincinnati’s Meredith Shockley-Smith, Ph.D. presented on how bi3 is helping our partners Cradle Cincinnati and Queens Village build trust for greater equity with birthing families through the Mama Certified program.
bi3’s Trust-Based Philanthropy work featured in Social Investor article
In the 2022 edition of Social Investor, Shaady Salehi, who serves as Executive Director of the Trust-Based Philanthropy Project, shared why transparent, trusting relationships between donors and doers are key to achieving impact.
She lifted up bi3 as an example of how the trust-based approach helps nonprofits and funders accelerate impact, highlighting how the change in reporting and building of trust led to eye-opening conversations between bi3 and its grantees.
“This insight helped bi3 take on this systematic barrier to infant and maternal health. It identified an advocacy partner and provided them with resources to launch a targeted campaign to extend postpartum Medicaid coverage to one year,” Salehi writes.
Black Empowerment Works grantees celebrate bi3 Health Equity Fund
Earlier this month, we brought the 2022/2023 bi3 Black Empowerment Works (BEW) Health Equity Fund grantees together to get to know each other! In partnership with the United Way of Greater Cincinnati, the newly established bi3 fund provides $1 million in funding to BEW over three years. The nine bi3-funded Black-led grassroots organizations focus on improving health outcomes and building health equity.
bi3 sponsors Learning Grove’s Breakthroughs in Early Childhood Conference
On November 2-3, Learning Grove hosted its Breakthrough in Early Childhood Conference at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center, where distinguished national and international researchers and theorists presented insights from childhood development research.
Designed to close the gap between breakthroughs in research and practical applications in policy, practice and parenting, the Breakthroughs conference focused on four emergent research areas:
– Anti-racist early childhood education (ECE)
– Rethinking trauma
– Family engagement
– Developmental neuroscience
Attendees included thought leaders, ECE administrators, education leaders and policymakers who can apply this new knowledge to inform, reform and transform the systems that nurture our children and families.
Join Learning Grove’s Breakthrough Network to continue the conversation from the conference and receive cutting-edge news in this field.
For more updates on the work of bi3 and our funded partners, be sure to follow us on social media!