on Monique's mind

Empowered Evanston
You’re part of the “we”

Welcome to the beginning of fall. Leaves are changing, the air is crisp and we are about to begin the season of crafty slow-cooked meals. School is back in session and vacations are on hold for at least a few months. Most of us are already back to work while many of us never stopped to breathe this summer.

This year has been uniquely filled with opportunities to discuss, disagree and direct our energy to creating lasting change in our communities. With these opportunities I’m excited to see new local leaders and renewed commitment to engage and to understand each other. The world is always changing. From politics to global warming, opinions vary greatly on how to keep our community safe, thriving and growing in a positive way for everyone’s best interest. Although our future depends on us getting it “right” right now, we can’t seem to agree on the methods for advancing our common human rights goals. The “we” I mention here is a collective “we”. If you’re a part of the dialogue, if you’re active or not in the political discourse, if you’re a drive-by advocate or standing in the trenches – you’re part of the “we.”

Monique B Jones at the 2017 Evanston MashUp when ECF and Northwestern University Dance Marathon shared the Catalyst Award for the 20+ year collaboration.

For our part, we partner with our colleagues in the field who are doing the hard work on the ground to restore justice and save lives. While our mission is local – to help Evanston thrive now and forever as a vibrant, just and inclusive community – we won’t ignore the communities around us experiencing disaster in many forms, including Charlottesville, southeast Texas, the northwest states, and Florida. ECF is defining our “we” by implementing our strategic plan based on principles and goals designed to bring our supporters and the nonprofit community closer to understanding each other and working in collaboration over a longer term. This summer at the Foundation, we rediscovered something we always knew. No matter your method for making the world a better place – the end goal is the same – to make the world a better place.

Community foundations have varying missions, yet are all pulling together to contribute to restoring justice not only in their communities but across the country. From using best practices to offering advice and hands on assistance, community foundations are being called upon to stand beside our friends doing the hard work to rebuild our communities. ECF is happy to lend a helping hand.

One of our strategic goals is to foster a community that collaborates with each other and across sectors.  For example, we keep an open ear for donors and business partners with the capacity to connect with us for short-term or long-term work projects. Recently we’ve paired local businesses with nonprofit organizations to foster a greater understanding of the basic, human service needs in Evanston. This is an important goal for the Foundation to build these relationships.

As your community foundation we are working hard to bring our strategic goals to life for improving all of Evanston. We are here now and into the future for a more vibrant, just and inclusive community. You’re part of the “we”.

Onward!
MBJ
September 14