February 23, 2016

The winter weather may have slowed some things down, but at Hyams, we’re still as busy as ever supporting the vital racial justice work of our grantees. Here’s what’s going on: 

Housing Justice Convening
The Hyams Foundation supports groups that organize and advocate for policy and institutional changes that advance equitable housing access and aim to reduce racialized economic disparities. On February 16, Hyams brought together community organizing and policy advocacy grantees that focus on affordable housing and land use issues in Boston and Chelsea. At the gathering, these groups shared their work and learned about current policy campaigns that involve residents in leadership roles and have the potential for increasing access to affordable housing. The groups discussed inclusionary housing policies that ensure that a share of all new housing development is priced to be affordable to lower income residents, and efforts to advance passage of a just cause eviction ordinance and the Community Preservation Act in Boston. 
Hyams Leadership Transition

Recently, Hyams Foundation Executive Director Beth Smith announced her decision to leave the Foundation by the end of the year. Click here to read Beth’s letter on her transition and a companion letter from Hyams Board Chair Marti Wilson-Taylor.

Click here to read the Hyams Executive Director Position Profile

Building Collaboration From the Inside Out
Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO) has produced an informative report, Building Collaboration From the Inside Out, on the importance of philanthropists coordinating resources and actions on shared priorities to effect change. Eighty percent of philanthropic leaders who participated in a recent GEO survey said this was a pressing need in philanthropy. Hyams Executive Director Beth Smith participated in the study and two follow-up GEO webinars on Boston’s rich history of funder collaboration.
Hyams-Funded Report to be Featured at Upcoming Briefing
MassINC has published a new report, Viewing Justice Reinvestment Through a Developmental Lens: New Approaches to Reducing Young Adult Recidivism in Massachusetts, that identifies effective ways to promote more positive futures for incarcerated young adults, ages 18 to 24, drawing on lessons learned from juvenile justice reform. MassINC will hold a special briefing at the Massachusetts State House on February 23 to discuss the report. This work relates to both what Hyams and its Teen Futures initiative grantees have learned about offering meaningful alternatives to high-risk youth, as well as the Foundation’s current focus on ending the “school-to-prison” pipeline.
Youth Jobs Rally

On February 18th, several hundred youth and adult members of the Youth Jobs Coalition, composed of groups from across Massachusetts, marched to the State House to demand $13 million to support nearly 5,200 jobs for youth. Click here to see news coverage of the event

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The Hyams Foundation is a private, independent foundation with a mission of increasing economic, racial and social justice and power within low-income communities in Boston and Chelsea, Massachusetts.