A national network of funders supporting strategic, innovative, and effective solutions to homelessness

2018 Funders Institute



The 2018 Funders Institute was held in Washington, D.C. in conjunction with the National Conference on Ending Family and Youth Homelessness. In addition to our one-day Institute, the event continued through the National Conference on Ending Homelessness. Each day featured workshop sessions planned by Funders Together with content and discussion exclusively for private funders. Below is the agenda for the Institute outlining the various sessions that were offered along with resources that supplemented the topics covered.


MONDAY, JULY 23, 2018 - Balcony A, Mezzanine Level

8:30 – 9:00


9:00 – 9:40

Welcome and Networking

9:40 – 11:00 

Why Prevention and What Does It Mean?

  • Katie Hong, Director, Youth Homelessness, Raikes Foundation

How Are Communities Thinking About Prevention?

Hear different perspectives about how funders, communities, and policymakers are thinking about prevention and working with other systems. Read the guest speaker bios here.

  • Jasmine Hayes, Deputy Director, United States Interagency Council on Homelessness
  • Katie Hong, Director, Youth Homelessness, Raikes Foundation
  • Russell Johnson, President and CEO, HealthSpark Foundation
  • Jennifer Loving, CEO, Destination: Home

Tips to Begin Tackling Homelessness Prevention
Destination:Home - Homelessness Prevention
Housing Ready Community's Toolkit
Unlocking Doors to Homelessness Prevention
Questions to Ask Around Homelessness Prevention
USICH Strategic Plan: Home, Together

How Are You Thinking About Prevention? What Questions Do You Have?

Take a few minutes to reflect on what you’ve heard and share your own thinking around prevention.

 11:00 – 12:00

Working at the Intersections

Hear how homelessness interacts with housing; criminal justice and behavioral health; the health system; the workforce system; and child welfare system, and how data is instrumental to preventing and ending homelessness. Leaders and funders will share how they are approaching this cross-system work and why it is an important part of our work to prevent homelessness.

12:00 - 1:00


1:00 – 1:45

National Conference on Ending Homelessness Opening Plenary

This is open to those who registered to attend the full conference in addition to the Funders Institute.

2:15 – 4:30

Systems Roundtable Discussions

Over two rounds of discussion, participants will dive deeper into how the following systems interact with the homeless response system, what we know from the data, and our role as funders is in this work.

Affordable Housing:

  • Susan Thomas, Senior Program Officer, Melville Charitable Trust
  • Fred Karnas, Senior Fellow, The Kresge Foundation

Affordable Housing Resources:
Funders for Housing and Opportunity

Child Welfare and Youth Homelessness:

  • Catherine Lester, Consultant, Jim Casey Initiative, Annie E. Casey Foundation

Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health:

  • Richard Cho, Director, Behavioral Health, Council of State Governments Justice Center
  • Janice Elliott, Executive Director, Melville Charitable Trust

Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health Resources:
What Does It Mean to End Chronic Homelessness (After We've Ended It)?
Vulnerable Populations with Serious Mental Illnesses
Meeting the Needs of People with Mental Illnesses Leaving or Diverted from Jails through Supportive Housing
The Stepping Up Initiative


  • Jake Maguire, Principal, Community Solutions
  • Beth Sandor, Principal, Community Solutions

Data Resources:
Getting to Proof Points: Key learnings from the first three years of the Built for Zero initiative 


  • Nineequa Blanding, Director, Health & Wellness, The Boston Foundation
  • Soni Gupta, Director of Neighborhoods & Health, The Boston Foundation

Health Resources:
Boston Foundation Health Starts at Home Initiative
Philanthropy's Role in Addressing Neighborhood Conditions that Shape Health 


  • Amy Kleine, Program Director, Housing & Community Services, The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation
  • Hannah Roberts, Baltimore Mayor’s Office of Human Services

Workforce Resources: 
Journey to Jobs: Understanding and Eliminating Barriers Imposed on Homeless Jobseekers
Evaluation of the Front Door Rapid Rehousing Program
Systems Work Better Together: Strengthening Public Workforce & Homeless Service Systems Collaboration
Pathways Forward: Recommendations for Federal Action to Increase Economic Mobility for Individuals Experiencing Homelessness or Housing Instability


Closing Remarks

  • Amanda Andere, CEO, Funders Together to End Homelessness

4:30 - 6:00

Networking Reception

Lebanese Taverna, 2641 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008


TUESDAY, JULY 24, 2018 - Hoover Room, Mezzanine Level

9:00 - 10:30

Policy Updates and Advocacy Opportunities for Funders

Together with national leaders, we’ll discuss upcoming policy concerns and advocacy opportunities, midterm elections, the 2020 Census, and what funders should be thinking about in the coming year.

  • Peggy Bailey, Director of the Health Integration Project, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
  • Fred Karnas, Senior Fellow, The Kresge Foundation (moderator)
  • Sarah Mickelson, Senior Director of Policy, National Low Income Housing Coalition
  • Keeley Monroe, Democracy Program Manager, Funders' Committee for Civic Participation
  • Nan Roman, President and CEO, National Alliance to End Homelessness

Funders Together Census 2020 resource page
Will you count? People Experiencing Homelessness in the 2020 Census
Senate Pass FY18 THUD Bill 


WEDNESDAY, JULY 25, 2018 - Hoover Room, Mezzanine Level

9:00 - 10:30

Reflecting on Our Racial Equity Journey

In this high-energy session, funders will get a chance to share challenges and successes in their efforts to incorporate a racial equity lens into their work. We will close with time for networking and reflection to help participants think through what learnings they’ll take home.

  • Nicky GorenPresident and CEO, Meyer Foundation
  • Gerren Price, Senior Associate, National Community Strategies, Annie E. Casey Foundation

The Role of Senior Leaders in Building a Race Equity Culture
Annie E. Casey Foundation Race Equity and Inclusion Guide
Introducing Advancing Equity
Funders Together Racial Equity resource page

Showing 1 reaction

  • Lauren Samblanet
    published this page in Past Events 2018-07-31 11:46:24 -0400

We joined Funders Together because we believe in the power of philanthropy to play a major role in ending homelessness, and we know we have much to learn from funders across the country.

-Christine Marge, Director of Housing and Financial Stability at United Way of Greater Los Angeles

I am thankful for the local partnerships here in the Pacific Northwest that we’ve been able to create and nurture thanks to the work of Funders Together. Having so many of the right players at the table makes our conversations – and all of our efforts – all the richer and more effective.

-David Wertheimer, Deputy Director at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Very often a lack of jobs and money is not the cause of poverty, but the symptom. The cause may lie deeper in our failure to give our fellow citizens a fair chance to develop their own capacities, in a lack of education and training, in a lack of medical care and housing, in a lack of decent communities in which to live and bring up their children.

-President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964 State of the Union Address

Funders Together has given me a platform to engage the other funders in my community. Our local funding community has improved greatly to support housing first models and align of resources towards ending homelessness.

-Leslie Strnisha, Vice President at Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland

Our family foundation convenes local funders and key community stakeholders around strategies to end homelessness in Houston. Funders Together members have been invaluable mentors to us in this effort, traveling to our community to share their expertise and examples of best practices from around the nation.

-Nancy Frees Fountain, Managing Director at The Frees Foundation

Sign in with Facebook, Twitter or email.