Foundations excel at breaking the exact things we say we want to fix. I know, because the private foundation I’ve managed for six years used to break what we thought we were fixing, too.

Westword recently covered an open letter to foundations by Jami Duffy, the executive director of Youth on Record, in which she reiterated what many foundation executives continue to ignore: pleas from nonprofit leaders across the field to provide unrestricted, multi-year funding and to quit wasting their time with extensive applications, reports, meetings and requests for information. To Duffy’s voice, I’d add the voices of twenty local nonprofit organizations led predominantly by leaders who are Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC). They are making the same requests for foundations to quit wasting their time and requiring that they serve us, often taking priority over serving the communities we are actually trying to support.

Read the full article here.

At the end of 2020, University of Denver Advancement hosted a series of virtual fireside panels with the city of Denver’s movers and shakers, many of whom are DU alumni. The topic: how Denver can thrive during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. In this four-part series, the DU Newsroom chats with alumni from a variety of industries and sectors to examine the community’s strengths, weaknesses and solutions in the years ahead.

In addition to successfully completing a $2M capital campaign DEBT FREE, Youth on Record has expanded its programs by 600% in seven years, has administered grants from the City and County of Denver, The Denver Office of Economic Development. Denver Public Schools, Denver’s Youth Office of Behavioral Development, and many private foundations.  We hold a deep belief that nonprofits must be as innovative, entrepreneurial, and spirited as the for-profit sector if we are to make a substantial impact. Our growth and success is reflective of that spirit, and truly makes Youth on Record one-of-a-kind in our field.

In our nine-year history, Youth on Record has received the following awards for our innovative, and entirely unique approach to empowering Denver’s youth through creative education.