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

Funders Forum on Philanthropy's Role in Ending Family and Youth Homelessness

For the past two years, Funders Together to End Homelessness (FTEH) ran a Community of Practice focused on funders’ roles in ending youth and young adult homelessness. This community, Foundations for Youth Success (FYS), brought together philanthropic leaders -- large, national funders as well as those working at the community level -- to identifying best practices and implement effective solutions for our young people. Throughout this two-year initiative, members participated in regular virtual meetings and came together in person twice a year.


At our 2017 Funders Forum, Foundations for Youth Success members from the following foundations shared takeaways from this community and changes they've made since:

  • Butler Family Fund
  • Campion Advocacy Fund
  • Miami Homes For All
  • Melville Charitable Trust
  • Paul G. Allen Family Foundation
  • Raikes Foundation
  • William J. and Dorothy K. O’Neill Foundation

We also discussed upcoming opportunities for philanthropy and how to work with the new Administration and Congress to ensure that preventing and ending homelessness continues to be a bi-partisan issue with the following speakers:

Throughout the day we heard from a few special "pop-up" speakers who highlighted upcoming programming and opportunities.

  • Leslie Perkul, The William J. Dorothy K. O'Neill Foundation
  • Rebecca Allen, Melville Charitable Trust
  • Matthew Doherty, United States Interagency Council on Homelessness
  • Andrea Iloulian, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation
  • Brenyale Toomer-Byas, Orange County United Way

The event took place on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 at the Marriott Marquis Houston

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

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