GoWomen: CFW's 2017 Annual Report: TAKE ACTION
November 01 2017

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Hope should shove you out the door, because it will take everything you have to steer the future.

At Chicago Foundation for Women’s 32nd Annual Luncheon, we celebrated the many ways women and men can activate their power to build better communities for women and girls: as educators, faith leaders, legislators, community organizers and philanthropists. We need all kinds of activists to create change.

CFW’s 2017 Annual Report, TAKE ACTION, continues to explore all the ways the CFW community is taking action for women and girls. The problems we are tackling – economic insecurity, violence, and lack of access to health care and health information – are complex and multifaceted. There is no single solution. If we are to succeed, we must approach these problems from multiple perspectives.

We must act across sectors and communities: empowering women and girls as leaders, investing in innovative and effective programs, advocating for just laws and policies, and being champions for women and girls in our own communities. The 2017 annual report tells the stories of some of the women and men who#TakeActionwithCFW.

We rely on this community to help us make a collective impact: over $2.3 million in grants, the highest in CFW history, serving over 76,000 women, girls, transgender and gender nonconforming individuals in the Chicago region.

Thank you to every member of the CFW community who made this possible through their support, advocacy and hard work on behalf of women and girls.

I invite you to explore the stories in the 2017 annual report, and hope you will be inspired to #TakeActionwithCFW yourself.

With highest hopes,

K. Sujata
Chicago Foundation for Women



Moving from Domestic Violence Awareness to Action

With Domestic Violence Awareness Month behind us, K. Sujata reflects on how we can move beyond awareness to take action, and how we can engage men and boys in ending the cycle of violence in her latest Huffington Post blog.


#GivingTuesday Grant Opportunity with CFW

Leading up to the sixth annual #GivingTuesday on November 28, CFW is asking our community to participate in an online grant selection. Individuals who make a gift leading up to and on #GivingTuesday will have an opportunity to vote for one of three programs that are improving the lives of Chicago-area immigrant and refugee women and girls. The program with the most votes will receive a special, one-time $10,000 #GivingTuesday award. The two runner-ups will receive awards of $2,500 or $1,000.

Do you know an organization making a difference in the lives of Chicago-area immigrant and refugee women and girls? Eligible organizations can apply with a short 1-2 minute video explaining what the grant would help them achieve. You can view eligibility requirements and the full “Request for Videos” here. The deadline to apply is Tuesday, November 7, 2017.


Nominate Someone for a 2018 Impact Award!

Do you know someone who is dedicated to improving the lives of women and girls in Chicago? Nominate them for a 2018 Chicago Foundation for Women Impact Award today! CFW’s Impact Awards honor leaders in the community who are committed to improving the lives of women and girls. The deadline to submit nominations is Thursday, November 30th, 2017! Click here to download the nomination form.

Looking for inspiration? Meet the 2017 Impact Award honorees!


Save the Date for the 8th Annual North Shore Holiday Party

In its 8 year history, the North Shore Holiday Party has raised nearly $160,000 for women and girls in the Chicago area. Please join Chicago Foundation for Women and friends on Thursday, December 7 for an intimate holiday gathering as we continue to pursue our mission to invest in women and girls as catalysts, building strong communities for all. Contact Ilda Lagunas, ilagunas@cfw.org, to join the host committee.



32nd Annual Luncheon Raises Over $1.16M

On Thursday, October 19, 1,800 members of our community came together to ‘activate’ for women and girls at CFW’s 32nd Annual Luncheon. Attendees had the opportunity to hear from national activists Dolores Huerta, co-founder of United Farm Workers, and Alicia Garza, co-creator of #BlackLivesMatter, share their first experiences with activism and what keeps them going.

Before the luncheon, Dolores Huerta sat down with WBEZ’s Morning Shift to talk about her lifetime of activism and the new documentary about her life, “DOLORES,” (which is showing at the Gene Siskel Film Center November 10 – 15!) Alicia Garza also spoke with WBEZ’s Natalie Moore about the inspiration she draws from young activists pushing for justice in Chicago.

Shia Kapos described the “unifying spirit” of the “energy in the room,” at the Annual Luncheon, which, thanks to the support of the CFW community, raised over $1,160,000 for Chicago women and girls. Miss out on the action?  Windy City Times has a recap of the luncheon, ABC7 stopped by, and CAN TV captured the Morning Symposium, which is now available to watch online. You can alsowatch remarks from K. Sujata, CFW board chair Pat Slovak and grantee speakers on CFW’s YouTube channel.

View photos from the Morning SymposiumActivation HubLuncheon and VIP reception at the links.


CFW Announces Barrow Fund for Black Women’s Leadership

At the 32nd Annual Luncheon, CFW President/CEO K. Sujata announced the creation of the Willie Taplin Barrow Fund for Black Women’s Leadership, which will support Willie’s Warriors, a new black women’s leadership initiative, as well as The Rev. Willie Barrow Emerging Leaders Award. The Willie Taplin Barrow Fund for Black Women’s Leadership is established with the support of the Willie Taplin Barrow Leadership Institute and Museum in partnership with African American Legacy (AAL) at the Chicago Community Trust.

“Willie’s Warriors will carry on the spirit of the late Rev. Willie Barrow, a fierce civil rights leader who was known as ‘The Little Warrior’ for her passion for racial justice and social change,” K. Sujata said. “We are honored and humbled to carry on the Rev. Barrow’s remarkable legacy.”


From Hasghtag to Action

#MeToo began as a viral hashtag where women shared personal experiences of sexual harassment and assault, but continues to have far-reaching effects. The Chicago Tribune spoke with activists, academics and Chicago Foundation for Women about how we can ensure #MeToo is not just a moment, but a movement.

“Women are speaking out about sexual harassment and sexual violence and it’s reaching a cultural mass,” said Emily Dreke, CFW’s Vice President of Development and Communications. “We can’t have this just be about the experience about famous white women. This is about all of us. There’s no liberation for me if my sister who doesn’t look like me or come from the same neighborhood as me is not liberated.”


Which Chicagoans are Stepping Up to Mentor Women?

Crain’s Chicago Business published a special report on the career benefits of mentoring for women, and the women and men who are stepping up to fill the need, including former CFW Board Chair Andie Kramer and Troy Henikoff, one ofCFW’s Male Champions of Change. “Mentoring allows us to access new networks and opportunities we wouldn’t otherwise be able to get,” says CFW President/CEO K. Sujata.


Improving Training Options for Nonprofit Board Members

Lisa Bertagnoli at Crain’s Chicago Business writes about new research that roughly half of nonprofit board members felt they were prepared for board service. An underprepared board can have consequences for nonprofits operations and reputation, says CFW President/CEO K. Sujata. Bertagnoli spoke to Eli Marsh, Philanthropic Education Officer at CFW about the Board Member Boot Camp Program at CFW, a two-day training in nonprofit board basics, including governance, fiduciary responsibility and fundraising. “It definitely gave me a foundation in terms of the responsibilities of a board member,” says Ariel Thomas, data coordinator at the Metropolitan Breast Cancer Task Force in Chicago.



Run, Walk or Roll in the Pink Hat Race

Chicago Foundation for Women is thrilled to be a beneficiary of the 5K Pink Hat Run! Join us Saturday, November 4 and Run, walk or roll to benefit women’s organizations throughout Illinois. You can help by setting a fundraising goal when you register and sharing your individual or team fundraising page with your own personal network. You can register here. Hope to see you there on November 4!


K. Sujata to Speak at Light of Unity Festival

K. Sujata, CFW President/CEO, will join attorney Layli Miller-Muro, founder of theTahirih Justice Center and speaker on issues of advocacy for immigrant women, at the Baha’i House of Worship in Wilmette on Saturday, November 11, at 7:00 p.m. for “World Citizenship: Equality of Women and Men” as part of the Light of Unity Festival. The event is free and open the public. Learn more and reserve your ticket here.


A Night with CFW and the Chicago Bulls

Join CFW for a game of basketball benefitting women and girls in the Chicago region. The Chicago Bulls matchup against the Charlotte Hornets on Friday, November 17, and CFW friends and family can purchase tickets at a discount, with a portion of each ticket benefitting CFW. Purchase your ticket with promo code CFW here.


Leave a Legacy of Purpose with CFW

Nicole Robinson honored her family’s history and her grandmother’s legacy by starting the Lueavery Partee Fund at CFW. There are many ways to leave your legacy at Chicago Foundation for Women. To learn more about planned giving visit www.cfw.org/plannedgiving or contact Katy Thomas at 312.577.2836 or kthomas@cfw.org.