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A line of people enters the Interactive Resource Center in 2015, as snow falls in Greensboro. The IRC is at 407 E. Washington St. in downtown Greensboro.

On March 18 at “Expanding Community Giving,” an event sponsored by the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro (CFGG), the inspiring speaker Sara Velten, senior director of Leadership with the Philanthropy Opportunity Fund, discussed the intersection of philanthropy and civic engagement. She underscored philanthropy’s reach beyond donating money as she gave an overview of Giving Circles nationwide, demonstrating the result of expanding philanthropic community efforts to include people from all walks of life, experience, ethnicity, race and gender.

The stated purpose of CFGG’s Immigrant Fund Giving Circle is “to address the needs and wellbeing of immigrants living in our community.”

At the March 18 event, four organizations received inaugural grants totaling $10,000: Faith Action International House to help support the Emergency Assistance Fund and commissary accounts for detainees held at Stewart Detention Center in Georgia; the Interactive Resource Center to help support the Triad Immigrant Family Support Fund; St. Barnabas Episcopal Church to help support ongoing Sanctuary work; and the North Carolina Justice Center Immigration and Refugee Rights Project to help support legal clinics for families living in the Triad.

Consider the efforts of organizations like these with modest budgets and substantive initiatives as they work with, rather than for, the community.

Whitney Grove Vanderwerf


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