MGM National Harbor: A Dedicated Philanthropic Partner

MGM National Harbor is well-known for its stunning views of the Potomac River and expansive resort, but it has also contributed to the local economy while working to make positive contributions that benefit its employees, its community and the environment. When it opened in late 2016 in National Harbor, Maryland, Governor Larry Hogan called the entertainment destination “one of the most important economic development projects in Maryland history.” 

From the beginning, MGM set out to enhance its community by making meaningful investments in workforce development, economic inclusion, and community engagement. Soon after signing a community benefits agreement with the County, MGM chose the Greater Washington Community Foundation to manage its grantmaking through the MGM National Harbor Community Fund. 

“We bring to the process a long history in the County, our knowledge of community needs and a commitment to being transparent throughout the grantmaking process,” said Desiree Griffin-Moore, executive director of The Community Foundation’s local office in Prince George’s County. “In turn, MGM adds value to the community as a responsible corporate partner who is actively engaged in multiple ways. Over time, our relationship has truly blossomed.”

For instance, MGM Resorts International Regional Vice President of Community Engagement Danielle White serves on The Community Foundation’s Advisory Board in Prince George’s County, MGM National Harbor has hosted The Community Foundation in Prince George’s County’s Civic Leadership Awards for several years and Community Foundation staff have been invited to brief MGM’s internal grants council on pressing community needs. “It’s a tight-knit relationship,” says White.

MGM National Harbor employees volunteer at local nonprofit Food & Friends.

MGM National Harbor employees volunteer at local nonprofit Food & Friends.

Nowhere is that more evident than the confidence MGM has placed in The Community Foundation’s management and distribution of $150,000 in annual grants through Sharing Prince George’s. This funding goes to effective nonprofit organizations addressing the economic security needs of county residents by providing education, workforce development and safety-net services. “The bottom line is The Community Foundation makes sure Prince George’s County is successful by identifying funding opportunities that provide a direct impact to the people,” said White.

“Through the course of time The Community Foundation has developed strong partnerships with local nonprofit organizations.” says White. “When they make a recommendation, it involves a rigorous review of large and small institutions that may be unfamiliar to us.” For instance, White was recently introduced to Nick’s Place, a 20-year old organization with a mission to assist young men in their journey through the disease of addiction and alcoholism. 

“We are seeing so many young men who are desperate to have a sober and safe community,” said Rhea McVicker, founder of Nick’s Place, named for her son, Nicholas Cristarella, whose life ended at age 22 as a result of the disease of addiction and alcoholism. “We don’t receive funding from the government, so any grant we receive is meaningful, but the $20,000 grant from Sharing Prince George’s is especially meaningful,” said McVicker. The funding will support the organization’s relapse prevention education and weeknight dinner program. 

In addition to Nick’s Place, the full list of 2018 Sharing Prince George’s grantees is available here. You can learn more about Sharing Prince George’s here

The Community Foundation has a long history of helping businesses establish and manage their philanthropic investments to create benefits for communities throughout the Greater Washington region. The DC Convention Center and Jack Cooke Kent Stadium (now FedEx Field) are among many examples over our 46-year history. If you are interested in learning more about our philanthropic advisory services for businesses, including the facilitation and

execution of Community Benefit Agreements, please contact Desiree Griffin-Moore at dgriffin@thecommunityfoundation.org

Sharing Prince George’s Announces New Investments to Benefit Thousands of County Residents

The Greater Washington Community Foundation’s Sharing Prince George’s Fund is excited to announce $140,000 in new investments in seven local nonprofits serving County residents.

Sharing Prince George’s is a strategic funding effort representing a collection of philanthropic resources, including the Prince George’s Neighbor to Neighbor Fund and the MGM National Harbor Fund. It aims to increase economic security for residents of Prince George’s County by providing support for safety-net programs which help individuals in crisis to lift themselves out of poverty, educational activities that prepare young people for a successful transition to adulthood, and workforce development opportunities that will help residents earn a living wage. Since its inception, Sharing Prince George’s has awarded more than $1 million in grants to some of the best community-based nonprofit organizations serving Prince George’s County residents.

The seven nonprofits selected for funding in 2018 include:

Community Outreach and Development CDC’s Labor of Love Human Services Center will provide families with financial assistance subsidies to help avoid evictions or utility disconnections, and supply food and other gap-filling needs. 

“Thanks to the Sharing Prince George’s Fund, Community Outreach and Development was able to assist 260 families (747 individuals) each with Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday food baskets, provide upgrades to our clothing closet, and also ensure our food pantry stays stocked. We appreciate the opportunity to serve our most vulnerable residents.” – Sandy Washington, Executive Director

Food & Friends will prepare and deliver 258,432 medically-tailored meals to 810 people living in Prince George’s County—individuals who are living with HIV/AIDs, cancer, or another serious chronic illness, as well as their children and caregivers. 

“At Food & Friends, we are committed to bringing the community together to help our neighbors battling serious illnesses. We are proud to partner with the Sharing Prince George’s Fund: this grant will help 800 County residents in 2019, supporting costs associated with preparing and delivering our nutritionally-tailored meals.” – Carrie Stoltzfus, MPH, Executive Director

Laurel Advocacy and Referral Services, Inc.’s Emergency Services program will help 1,500 Laurel residents who face financial crisis to meet basic needs for food, rent, utilities, prescriptions, clothing and furniture.

"Laurel Advocacy & Referral Services, Inc. (LARS) is grateful for the continued support of the Greater Washington Community Foundation. The Sharing Prince George’s grant fuels our daily efforts to not only meet the basic needs of our community, but also to empower people with the skills and habits to maintain financial stability." - Leah Paley, Executive Director

Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area’s workforce development program will provide low-income immigrants who are refugees, asylees or victims of human trafficking with job readiness training, one-on-one job counseling, resume development, job placement and follow-up post placement.

“Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area has a long history of serving our newest neighbors through refugee resettlement. We are grateful for the award from the Sharing Prince George’s County Fund as it increases our ability to help our neighbors become active members of the Prince George's community.” – Christine Connell, CEO

Maryland Community Connection will create stable environments for County residents with developmental disabilities by providing support for basic needs and essential life services, such as hunger relief, eviction and utilities disconnection assistance, uninsured medical expenses, and employment placement and job retention services.

“Crisis isn’t expected. Planning for basic needs isn’t a luxury. Food and a place to call home is a necessity. And being asked for help isn’t an inconvenience. Maryland Community Connection is humbled and appreciative to provide basic needs/safety net services to individuals with disabilities, thanks to Sharing Prince George’s.” – André Coates, Executive Director

Nick’s Place Relapse Prevention Education Program will help homeless young men exiting in-patient drug and alcohol addiction treatment facilities with housing, food, employment services and addiction recovery support for 6 months to a year. 

"It is a real privilege to have our 19 years of work in Prince George's County acknowledged with a grant that will help us continue to provide clean, safe, sober housing and life management programming to young men beginning recovery from the disease of addiction.” – Rhea McVicker, Executive Director

Prince George’s Child Resource Center, Inc. Healthy Families program will provide free, weekly in-home intervention services for 170 at-risk mothers to combat health disparities associated with poverty and promote children’s healthy development.

“It is an honor to be a grantee of Sharing Prince George's! This funding will make a difference for our Healthy Families Prince George's program. When offering home visiting services that provide new moms with much-needed support, this funding ensures that we can meet unique needs encountered by the families we serve.” – Jennifer Iverson, Executive Director

The Community Foundation’s Sharing Prince George's County Fund facilitates education and civic engagement around local issues and encourages more residents and businesses to collectively give where they live. The initiative helps donors strategically leverage their giving to create even greater impact in our communities by pooling resources to support nonprofits responding to the most critical needs. It also brings together donors and other stakeholders to learn first-hand about the challenges facing the area’s most vulnerable residents and engage in a peer-led grant review process, supported by The Community Foundation’s professional staff. 

If you would like to learn more about Sharing Prince George’s, please visit our website or contact Desiree Griffin-Moore at dgriffin@thecommunityfoundation.org.

New Investments in Preventing and Ending Homelessness to Impact Hundreds of DC Residents

The Greater Washington Community Foundation’s Sharing DC Fund has announced $160,000 in new investments in eight nonprofits working to address homelessness in DC. Sharing DC will award grants toward two separate funding priorities: offering flexible funding to programs that help people with costs related to obtaining and moving into permanent housing and providing support for youth homelessness prevention and intervention programs.

Sharing DC, established in 2013, is dedicated to improving the quality of life for the District of Columbia’s most vulnerable residents. Stewarded by an Advisory Committee of donors, in collaboration with The Community Foundation’s staff, Sharing DC gives donors the opportunity to learn first-hand about the challenges facing our community and identify nonprofits working to make a difference in the lives of children and families. The focus area is determined annually by the Sharing DC Advisory Committee.

Advisory Committee Chair, Laura Stone, explained the collaborative process that resulted in these grants: "This year, the Committee chose to focus on homelessness prevention and intervention in alignment with The Community Foundation’s broader impact initiative strategy for DC. As part of the planning process for a forthcoming partnership between The Community Foundation and The District of Columbia Interagency Council on Homelessness (ICH), these funding priorities were identified as two areas where private philanthropy can augment the District Government's homelessness service delivery. Sharing DC released an RFP focused on these areas and conducted a thorough and collaborative grant review process. We are proud of our list of grantees."

Kristy Greenwalt, Director, DC Interagency Council on Homelessness, Executive Office of the Mayor, shared, “We are so excited to be working in partnership with the Greater Washington Community Foundation. We all have a role to play in ending homelessness — it is not something one agency, or even one sector, can do alone. Our efforts must be strategically aligned to have maximum impact, which is why we are so excited The Community Foundation is piloting this grants program which supports implementation of the District’s Homeward DC and Solid Foundations DC plans.”

Addressing Youth Homelessness in DC

Youth experiencing homelessness are particularly vulnerable to harm and exploitation. The trauma and instability that results from homelessness can impact a young person’s development and have long-lasting effects on their well-being.

Sharing DC’s youth homelessness program grant recipients include: the Latin American Youth Center, Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League (SMYAL), Casa Ruby, and Sasha Bruce Youthwork. Funding will support street outreach, drop-in centers, hotline, prevention and stabilization services, emergency shelter, transitional housing, and permanent housing solutions.

Lupi Quinteros-Grady, President and CEO at Latin American Youth Center, noted, “With support from Sharing DC, LAYC’s bilingual, culturally competent staff will provide 400 runaway and homeless youth in DC with comprehensive services, including emergency care and supplies, crisis intervention, coordinated entry assessment, referrals to housing and other supports, case management, family intervention, and aftercare support.”     

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Sasha Bruce staff and clients at its emergency youth shelter, the Sasha Bruce House.

In DC, 17% of homeless youth self-identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or questioning, while 7% self-identify as transgender. With this in mind, Sharing DC chose to invest in SMYAL and Casa Ruby, two of the District’s premier LGBTQ-led service providers. Ruby Corado, Executive Director at Casa Ruby, shared, “Casa Ruby is really happy and in need of the grant received from The Community Foundation. Our LGBTQ Respite Center and Housing Program will greatly benefit from the ability to purchase the most comfortable bedding we can provide our youth." SMYAL’s Executive Director Sultan Shakir expressed that they are “incredibly grateful to Sharing DC for partnering with us to change the lives of homeless LGBTQ youth. We know our youth face a number of challenges, and we’re working together to ensure young people can overcome whatever gets put in their way.” 

Flexible Funding

District government dollars cover the large, recurring costs of helping residents obtain and maintain housing, however, there are small expenses associated with helping clients return to stable housing that aren’t covered by existing federal and local government housing assistance programs.  

Sharing DC’s flexible funding program grant recipients include: Pathways to Housing, Community of Hope, Friendship Place, and Miriam’s Kitchen. These grants will allow providers to help single adults, families, and youth move to permanent housing by funding key needs which often present barriers to exiting homelessness. Funding will help with small costs related to obtaining and moving into permanent housing that are not otherwise covered by government funding sources — such as security deposits, rental application fees, transportation to see rental units, moving costs and household furnishings.

Catherine Mitchell, Director of Neighbors First Families at Friendship Place, noted that "This grant fills in a gap in DC's funding for our permanent supportive housing program for formerly homeless families. Some of our families are living in unsafe conditions, and now we will be able cover their costs to relocate to safer and more stable housing, where they can move ahead toward goals for recovery, health, wellness, financial stability and educational and career advancement."


The Community Foundation is excited by these investments and the opportunity to mobilize private funding to help expand services for people experiencing homelessness. If you are a funder or donor interested in learning more about our work to end homelessness in DC, or would like to learn about how to become engaged in Sharing DC, learn more on our website.

2019 Montgomery County Philanthropist of the Year Nominations Now Open!

Nomination Guidelines

Purpose: To honor an individual who has made a positive impact in our community through giving, and whose philanthropic leadership sets an inspiring example for us all. 

Nomination Process:

Complete the official nomination form and a letter explaining why your nominee should be selected as the Montgomery County Philanthropist of the Year. 

Please note that the cover form must be completed in its entirety in order for the nomination to be eligible. The Awards Committee will not accept nominations which rely solely on resumes, newspaper articles, annual reports or the like in substitution for concise responses to the criteria outlined below. Pending review by the Philanthropist of the Year Selection Committee, The Community Foundation staff may contact you for additional information. 

For inspiration, look no further than our past honorees.

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Our 2018 Montgomery County Philanthropist of the Year, Linda Youngentob, and her family at the Celebration of Giving on November 1, 2018.


Eligibility Criteria: 

All nominees must…

  • Be a resident of Montgomery County

  • Have a demonstrated track record of charitable giving to one or more nonprofit organizations based in and working in Montgomery County

  • Have made a positive impact in the lives of county residents through their giving

  • Encourage/motivate others to become philanthropic

Note: The level of charitable dollars given is secondary to its impact and potential to inspire others to follow suit. Creative approaches to philanthropy are welcome!  Nominees may be of any age.

In exceptional circumstances, the Award Committee may consider a former resident, a family unit, or a philanthropist who is deceased. 

Deadline: March 8, 2019

The nomination form and letter must be postmarked or emailed by close of business on Friday, March 8, 2019 to:

The Community Foundation in Montgomery County

Attn: Kevin Donnelly

8720 Georgia Avenue, Suite 202

Silver Spring, MD 20910

kdonnelly@thecommunityfoundation.org

The Community Foundation in Montgomery County will contact the selected awardee and her/his nominator by the end of May. All other nominations will remain confidential.

Questions: Contact Kevin Donnelly at kdonnelly@thecommunityfoundation.org or 301-495-3036 x162.

Year-End Giving Tips from Leslie Smith of Chevy Chase Trust

With the end of the year quickly approaching, professional advisor Leslie Smith hopes individuals, families and businesses recognize that expertly managed and cost-effective donor-advised funds offer numerous financial advantages. Leslie, Senior Managing Director with Chevy Chase Trust, notes that a fund at the Greater Washington Community Foundation offers a special opportunity to learn about the issues facing the community and can support worthy causes, such as providing scholarships for students or helping to create a brighter future for vulnerable neighbors. There’s no better time to consider the financial benefits than in the last days of December.

Leslie has a long history with The Community Foundation—including as co-chair of The Foundation’s Professional Advisors Council and serving on The Community Foundation’s Advisory Board in Montgomery County and its Sharing Montgomery Grants Committee.

“I quickly went from having an academic understanding to comprehending the tremendous benefits of community foundations and donor-advised funds,” she says. “The bottom line is private foundations are not a very efficient option for most donors.” 

Leslie estimates that she and her colleagues have helped dozens, if not 100 or more clients set up donor-advised funds over the years. One client told Leslie that she wanted to focus on her own charitable giving after her husband passed away. A volunteer with the Literacy Council, the client was personally moved by stories of her immigrant neighbors who were determined to learn English while raising their families and working full-time, usually at low paid jobs. She wanted to find a way to help their children go to college. Leslie introduced her to Anna Hargrave, executive director of The Community Foundation’s local office for Montgomery County. Anna arranged a meeting with staff from the Literacy Council and Future Links, a nonprofit that provides academic support, internships and scholarships to underserved high school students. Fast forward four years: Leslie’s client has provided scholarships to three students, so far. 

“Every time we meet, she talks about those students and her terrific experience with The Community Foundation,” Leslie says. “Of course we also talk about her portfolio, but it’s her charitable giving and those scholarships that really make her light up.”

Leslie and her colleagues at Chevy Chase Trust not only refer clients to The Community Foundation, they also host learning events for clients on topics like hunger and poverty and roll up their sleeves and volunteer in the community. They are not alone. The Community Foundation partners with many corporations, professional advisors and financial institutions throughout the region who have demonstrated a strong commitment to addressing the community’s greatest challenges. 

Leslie recognizes that giving through The Community Foundation makes it possible to maximize the tax benefits and impact of philanthropy. As 2018 comes to a close, Leslie offers these five tips for end-of-the-year giving:

  • As you are considering your 2018 tax situation, you may find the cap of the deduction for state and local income tax as well as property taxes (a $10,000 deduction limit for all) results in higher than expected taxes, despite the reduction in federal rates. It may make sense to give more to charity, or to accelerate charitable giving into the current year.

  • Always consider gifting appreciated securities rather than cash, to avoid the capital gain on the securities. 

  • If you want to take advantage of the standard deduction rather than itemize, it could make sense to bunch charitable giving into alternate years so that one year you itemize and the next you use the standard deduction. 

  • If you don't want to make larger gifts to your usual charities in one year, a donor-advised fund can provide the mechanism to make a large deductible gift now, then take your time deciding how it will be used to benefit the community in the future.

  • If you are at least 70 1/2 years old, consider using your IRA to make a direct contribution to charity. You may give up to $100,000, which can include your Required Minimum Distribution. A donor-advised fund does not qualify for these donations, however, The Community Foundation offers other giving vehicles that allow you to take advantage of this type of gift.

Thank You for Supporting the 2018 Celebration of Giving

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Thank you for supporting the 2018 Montgomery County Celebration of Giving! 

We were proud to bring together more than 350 people to recognize the donors, nonprofits, and local leaders who make up our community of givers and doers in Montgomery County and to salute our 2018 Philanthropist of the Year, Linda Youngentob. 

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As we head into the holiday season, we hope you will remember Linda’s story and the three epiphanies which guided her own philanthropic journey:

  • You can have impact when you help one person at a time,

  • That impact will have a ripple effect, and

  • Every one of us can have this impact right here in our own community.

We wish to extend a special thank you to the Celebration Sponsors, Host Committee, and everyone who contributed to making the night a success. Proceeds raised will help The Community Foundation in Montgomery County to meet its goal of addressing critical community needs by investing in high-impact nonprofit organizations and inspiring more people to give!

We couldn’t have done it without you!

With deep gratitude,

Anna Hargrave

P.S. Watch Linda's salute video and visit our Celebration page to see additional photos from the event. 

Apply to Perform or Exhibit at the 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy

We are currently accepting proposal submissions for performance opportunities at The Community Foundation’s 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy. The event will take place Monday, March 25, from 6:00-9:00 pm at Arena Stage. The annual Celebration brings together about 800 local philanthropists, nonprofits, business and community leaders to honor their individual and collective contributions to ensuring our region is a more equitable, vibrant and inclusive place to live. This is the largest annual celebration of local philanthropy in our region, providing an opportunity to celebrate The Community Foundation’s impact and legacy of bringing people and resources together for community change.

The Celebration of Philanthropy is a unique experience — it is structured like a community arts festival featuring performances and exhibits showcasing some of the region's most exciting artists and nonprofit arts organizations supported by The Community Foundation and its community of givers. Performances are staggered throughout the evening and across all three levels of Arena Stage, allowing guests to experience the region’s vibrant local arts community while enjoying delicious food, an open bar, and networking opportunities with friends and colleagues.

We are specifically looking for:

  • Performance art — Live music, theater, dance, poetry/spoken word, or other performances (individuals or groups of artists of all disciplines and ages) that run for about 10-15 minutes. Performances do NOT take place on stages or in theaters, so submissions must be conducive to an open but limited performance space.

  • Visual art — Interactive and participatory exhibits or roving experience/activities that engage the audience as individuals or a group. Stations may run throughout the evening on various levels of the event space.

Please note: The Celebration offers guests a very festive party atmosphere. It is a standing and roving reception and, because the space is very open, the noise level can conflict with performance audio.

Eligibility Requirements

We will consider applications from artists and nonprofit organizations which are:

  • located in and/or serving residents of the Greater Washington region, including DC, Montgomery County, Northern Virginia, and Prince George’s County;

  • current or past grantees of The Community Foundation and/or its component funds;

  • available the evening of Monday, March 25, 2019, from roughly 4:00-9:00 pm, and for a pre-scheduled walk through and rehearsal prior to the event.

You may submit as many ideas as you’d like for consideration. Applications are due, via the online form below, no later than 5:00 pm on December 21, 2018.

Individuals and organizations selected for performance opportunities will be notified in mid-January 2019. Selected individuals/organizations will receive a $500 honorarium (one per performance) and up to two tickets for staff or guests to attend the event. Please send your questions to marketing@thecommunityfoundation.org.

Fill out my online form.

Save the Date for the 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy

 
 

It's time to celebrate! You’re invited to the 2019 Celebration of Philanthropy on March 25, 2019! This is the largest annual celebration of local philanthropy in our region. It is a true celebration of what makes our community remarkable—including the individuals and organizations who dedicate their time and resources to public service, philanthropy, and nonprofits to drive the area’s tremendous giving spirit and make our region a more vibrant, equitable and inclusive place to live. This is also an opportunity to celebrate The Community Foundation’s impact in our region and reflect on our legacy of bringing people and resources together for community change.

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At the Celebration, we will present the 2019 Civic Spirit Award to former Mayor Anthony Williams. Anthony Williams is a long-time champion for a thriving DC, having served as CFO, Mayor, and now as CEO of the Federal City Council. During more than a decade of service in local government, he is widely credited with leading the City out of bankruptcy and for initiating a period of sustained economic growth leading DC to the economically vibrant place it is today. He has continued his civic contribution and leadership at the Federal City Council, engaging the business community in investments in infrastructure and more equitable development, most recently with the launch of the Washington Housing Initiative. 

Attending the Celebration of Philanthropy is an experience unlike any other! You’ll take part in a cocktail reception and community festival featuring live music, theater, poetry, and dance performances from some of the region's most exciting nonprofits and local artists who are supported by The Community Foundation and our community of givers. These showcases are staggered throughout the evening and across the venue, allowing you to choose from a line-up of incredible acts while enjoying delicious food, an open bar, and networking with friends and colleagues. 

 
 

When you purchase a ticket or sponsorship for this event, you are also giving back to your community by supporting our efforts to build thriving communities throughout the region. Proceeds benefit The Community Foundation's Fund for Greater Washington, enabling us to make grants to effective nonprofits, incubate new ideas, convene partners to address community issues, and conduct programmatic initiatives and advocacy. Through this Fund, The Community Foundation invests in effective solutions to help our marginalized neighbors find pathways out of poverty, create diverse and inclusive spaces to deepen human connection, and prepare workers to succeed in our region’s changing economy.

Sponsorship Packages

We have a variety of sponsorship opportunities for organizations of all sizes and for individuals who want to celebrate with us and share their great work with an audience of 700+ community, philanthropic, local government, and business leaders— contact Emily Davis for more details.

We hope you will join us on March 25! This is truly a special celebration that you will not want to miss!


WHEN

Monday, March 25, 2019
6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

WHERE

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater
1101 Sixth Street SW | Washington, DC 20024

TICKETS

Ticket sales will open in January 2019

Business Attire