Thank you from David Johnson

 Monday, October 20, 2014

David Johnson class=


Friday marked the conclusion of my four-month appointment as Interim CEO here at the Foundation. As a Board Member, I had a sense that there was so much going on in the daily operations that I didn’t even realize. And boy was I right. I leave significantly more knowledgeable and with a much greater appreciation for the amount of work and the complexity of the work that goes on here.

I would like to thank FRF’s Board Chair, Carole Andersen, and my fellow Board Members for giving me this opportunity and for supporting me while here. And to the staff, who I now consider my friends, I sincerely thank them for their time and patience trying to educate and enlighten me. And to everyone in the community who shared thoughts about the Foundation -- thank you!

Finally, I welcome Hugh J. Ralston our new President/CEO and look forward to supporting him as we all continue the work of building the Fresno Regional Foundation into a source of pride for the entire community.

David Johnson

Healthy People and Healthy Communities

 Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Dear Friends of the Foundation,

Healthy people and healthy communities are at the heart of the Fresno Regional Foundation’s Smart Growth focus for the Environment grant cycle. FRF’s Board of Directors recognized the need for supporting how our communities are developed and maintained. After a year of researching the many variables that influence the health of the Valley, the FRF Board identified the strategies around Smart Growth as having the greatest opportunity for long-term permanent solutions.

Smart Growth Strategies for a healthy and prosperous community balance the key elements of public health and social equity, economic growth, and environmental sustainability. By focusing on this work, FRF is considering the complex intersections of economic, environmental, and civic impacts on how we develop and maintain our towns and cities. For example, developing housing and transportation for urban, suburban, and rural communities near jobs, shops, and schools not only protects the environment but also boosts local economies.

In the upcoming 2014 Environment Grant Cycle, The Fresno Regional Foundation will invest $225,000 for Smart Growth Strategies. But our investment doesn’t stop at dollars. FRF will cultivate relationships and learning opportunities with community benefit organizations (CBOs) working in the field, local business leaders, elected officials, and outside funders who have expressed interest in investing in the Central Valley.

To learn more about the 2014 Environment Grant Cycle, please visit our Grantmaking page.

Respectfully yours,

Kelvin Alfaro
Program Office

A Father Shares About Philanthropy

 Monday, October 06, 2014
Rico Guerrero Dear Friends of the Foundation,

Last Friday, September 26, I found myself in the cafeteria of Manchester Elementary School with 150 fifth graders staring me down. My son was one of those fifth graders, and I’m sure he was cringing at the thought of his dad saying something to embarrass him. I had been asked by my son’s teacher to come speak about philanthropy and to give them some examples of how young people can make a difference in their community. I took this very seriously as it’s a great responsibility to share such a wonderful lesson with these young people who are our future leaders and philanthropists.

As an introduction to philanthropy I thought it would be best to start with the definition. For simplicity I used the following definition, “the giving of your time, talents or treasure for the common good”. I then explained how they can become philanthropists by simply sharing their time, talent, and treasure. I was amazed at their attentiveness to such an idea which was followed by inquiring questions about how they could volunteer to help those in need. For example, one young girl asked how she could volunteer for an organization that helps young people who are hungry. I was touched by the compassion she genuinely showed about others in her community. I then provided her with ideas of how she and her classmates can help today and in the future.

Fresno Regional Foundation doesn’t usually work with fifth graders, but I loved it. We are mentoring emerging leaders through our NextGen Philanthropy program. This group of 26 young people between the ages of 20-30 have come together to share their own time, talent, and treasure. I have been working closely with this group to assist them with their charitable giving as well as educating them about local Community Based Organizations.

The young people that I have met throughout this time are hopeful and look for opportunities to change the world. Yes, change the world. They dream of helping others and finding solutions to grown up problems. Despite the many complex issues that we face in this world, I see a bright future because of these young people who are preparing to take the lead.

Respectfully yours,

Rico Guerrero
Donor Relations Coordinator 
(559) 226-5600 ext. 110 
[email protected]

Giving through the Foundation

Fresno Regional Foundation helps donors achieve their charitable goals, and we serve as a bridge connecting philanthropy to community-based organizations that provide programs and services throughout the San Joaquin Valley.

Learn more about giving through the foundation.

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