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Forever Washtenaw Blog

The latest news and commentary about what’s happening at AAACF and around Washtenaw County. This year, we are actively updating our website blog with stories from staff members every two weeks. Topics will be wide-ranging and will reflect the diverse perspectives and roles of staff members!



Blog for Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation

AAACF's Blog

By AAACF / August 24, 2022
When the foundation started its impact investing journey a few years ago, our hope was that we would be able to catalyze growth and opportunities across Washtenaw County. Over the past two years, we have made a number of investments into community-oriented financial institutions with a track record of providing both monetary and impact returns. In turn, those institutions invest directly into businesses in our area – providing value through job creation and retention, and services and resources to the community. We are excited to share with you how a recent investment has brought a dream to reality, and how dozens of our community members are benefitting.

By AAACF / March 16, 2022
Sometimes it’s what you know. Sometimes it’s who you know. Sometimes it’s both. While we can all agree that our community needs impactful programs and efficient & informed networks/systems, investing in those outcomes can be complicated.

By AAACF / February 18, 2022
What are you going to do about it? That common challenge is thrown down by parents, siblings, friends, co-workers, teachers, and mentors. I certainly have heard it enough in my life. So, I am pretty jazzed about how the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation (AAACF) is stepping up to answer that question.

By AAACF / January 26, 2022
I am really excited to be engaging with you through my first blog as Impact Investing Manager at the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation! I have always considered the Ann Arbor area my home, coming here first as a bright-eyed teenager enrolled at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. I then spent over a decade in philanthropy and capital markets, pursuing ways to utilize dollars to make systems, structures, and communities more equitable and just.

By AAACF / October 7, 2021
I joined the AAACF Youth Council in my freshman year of high school and now, at the University of Michigan, I’ve realized how much the Youth Council was an instrumental part of my life and taught me things that will help me far into my future. One thing that I especially valued about the Youth Council was the amount of learning that happened. Every year, in order to delve deeper into our funding priorities, we listened to and participated in different activities centered around these priorities.

By AAACF / August 4, 2021
Nearly every surface in my home is stacked with books. I’ve always loved settling down with something to read and getting lost in a story, both fiction and non-fiction. And my curiosity makes it difficult to stop mid-story, resulting in many late nights (“just one more page…”).

By AAACF / February 3, 2021
This fall, the Youth Council completed a Needs Assessment to identify the issues facing high school aged youth in Washtenaw County. The purpose of the survey was to gain data so that we are able to make informed decisions about how to distribute the funds we oversee. The 25 members of the Youth Council worked together with Carrie Hammerman, a consultant from NEW, to construct every aspect of the survey. We included questions about the concerns that impact youth the most, and what services and programs they would like to see more of. Additionally, we asked questions to identify the greatest barriers that prevent youth from participating in programs.

By AAACF / July 12, 2018
As we both transition from one chapter of our lives into another filled with unknowns, we find it hard to separate who we are from who we have become as a result of the Youth Council.

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