Photo credit: U.S. Army Photo by Staff Sgt. Ian M. Kummer, 40th Combat Aviation Brigade Public Affairs
A Note From Emily
In the wake of Veteran’s Day earlier this month, we’re pausing to reflect on the Oregon women, past and present, who have served in the military. In Count Her In, we celebrated the contributions of Oregon's military women, who serve at higher rates than women in many other states.
We also know that military women experience different challenges than their male counterparts. From deployment to reintegration into civilian life, women veterans - particularly women of color and trans women - have unique needs that go chronically unmet. We see this play out in post-service disparities related to access to and quality of health care- including experiences with post-traumatic stress disorder, experiences of sexual assault, harassment, abuse, and homelessness.
For women of color, these experiences are exacerbated: In a 2008 study, Black female military personnel reported more unwanted sexual attention and sexual coercion compared to white female military personnel. LGBTQ women also see additional disparities in treatment- from the two-decade long “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”, to the recent attempt to bar Trans-identifying individuals from serving.
You can support Oregon's military women by understanding their well-being in our communities, advocating for their needs, and creating spaces for veterans to voice their experiences and concerns. To help get you started, here are some organizations and resources for both veterans and civilians to explore:
Last month, we awarded a $5,000 inaugural Immediate Impact Grant to Sable House in Dallas, OR! SABLE (Safe from Abuse and Battered Living Environment) House was started in 1993 by the grassroots efforts of a small group of women in Polk County to increase the safety of domestic and sexual violence survivors through crisis intervention and community education services. The grant will support the installation of new - and much needed - floors for their shelter.
The Women’s Foundation Grants Committee (comprised of Foundation members, Foundation staff, and Board members) met at the end of October to review applications for the Immediate Impact Fund, a fund designed to have a speedy turnaround time to better support urgent and unexpected needs. This year's pilot Immediate Impact Fund will award grants of up to $5,000 every month through May 2018, with a turnaround time of six weeks or less. Please spread the word!
Our Annual Grant Cycle is Now Open!
Just like last year, our Letter of Interest (LOI) for our 2018 grantmaking cycle is part of our annual service provider survey. All organizations that meet our funding criteria are invited to complete the survey and submit an LOI. We will select organizations from which to invite full grant proposals from those who apply by November 30, 2017.
This year’s survey/optional LOI is particularly important for two reasons:
We’re increasing our annual grantmaking to $100,000 this year
We’re entering a strategic planning process and we want to be informed by the needs and wisdom of our service providers. You can find more details on our website.
Name: Elizabeth Estabrooks Age: 59 Occupation: Oregon Women Veterans Coordinator Member of the Women’s Foundation since: Founding member in 2014 Gender pronouns: she/her/hers
Why are you a member of the Women’s Foundation? I have been working on matters that relate to women’s health and violence against women for over 30 years. I began by volunteering as an escort at Planned Parenthood in Boise, Idaho in the late 80s and worked to preserve reproductive rights. In the 90s I began working in the field of domestic violence and sexual assault and eventually transitioned to strategic planning and gender-specific training. Over the years, I’ve often been the only person at the table saying “What about women and girls?” Now I’m the Oregon Women Veterans Coordinator, and that is still often the case. How could I not be a member of the Women’s Foundation when everything they do is focused on advancing policy and improving systems, supporting the work I have done and continue to do?
What’s your favorite spot in Oregon? The Oregon Coast, usually either Rockaway Beach or Pacific City.
What quality do you most admire in others? Truth. If you have truth as part or your core and are willing to explore truth (e.g. the truth around privilege), that leads you to other qualities, like real compassion, generosity, responsibility, thoughtfulness, and kindness. Knowing truth helps you embrace change and become a better person.
Which talent would you most like to have? The ability to make people be mindful and empathetic. Our world lacks these things.
What was your first volunteer experience? In the 70s girls volunteered at hospitals and nursing homes as “Candy Stripers.” I think I was 12 or 13. We wore these little dresses that had pink striped pinafores, and our job was just to talk to residents and bring some cheer into the place.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?In the mid – late 90s I was working at a domestic violence/sexual assault crisis center in Eastern Oregon. Victims of violence had no place to go, except temporary (3 night maximum) stays in hotel rooms. In July 1996 I approached the board of directors seeking approval to begin fundraising to purchase a house for a shelter. They approved the request and gave their support. By September the next year we had the money we needed – just over $300,000 dollars – to purchase and furnish the house, plus initial operating costs. The women and children who are victims in that community still have a safe place, in part because of my work.
Thanks so much, Liz!
Make a Difference
Giving Tuesday, an annual day of global giving, is coming up on November 28!
According to the Women's Philanthropy Institute's studyin 2016, 14.6 percent of donors reported giving to a particular area that impacts women and girls and 29.4 percent give to an organization that in part, focuses on women’s and girls’ issues. This Giving Tuesday, we invite you to invest in Oregon's women and girls.
Nov. 17-19: Dress for Success Oregon: Acey's Closet Sale,Portland Fabulous deals on new and gently used women's designer clothing, shoes and accessories (All starting at $5!) with all proceeds supporting Dress for Success Oregon.
Nov. 18:MissAnthology Launch Party, Portland Miss Anthology 2017 is a Pacific Northwest-based female and genderqueer youth comics anthology. The anthology is the culmination of comics from featured artists, a behind-the-scenes look at our free comics workshops, and work from our founders and instructors.
Nov. 20: Transgender Day Of Remembrance 2017, Portland, Corvallis, Ashland Transgender Day of Remembrance is a day to remember, honor, and reflect on the transgender lives that were lost to anti-trans violence and prejudice.
Nov. 21:What Now? Revolution Hall, Portland Whether looking to protect immigrants and refugees, safeguard healthcare, confront white supremacy or generally engage with the community—this year’s What Now event offers multiple engagement opportunities for Portlanders of all communities, backgrounds and ages.
Nov. 28:Transgender Justice 101 Training, Portland This free training is perfect for anyone in Washington County who wants to learn how to become a more effective transgender ally, from concerned individuals and nonprofit employees to affirming churches and other groups.
Nov. 30: Benefit for Red Lodge Transition Services, Portland Red Lodge Transition Services is a Native American led organization that provides culturally focused programs for women releasing from jail, prison or treatment. Join While Rome Burns and amazing Native American artists Cedar Rose and Fish Martinez in support of this group.
Nov. 30:Salem Screening of Zero Weeks, Salem (Coming soon to Portland, Bend, and Eugene) The documentary is 90 minutes, and afterward a panel of legislators will share thoughts on what a paid family and medical leave insurance program could mean for Oregon.
Portland Tribune: Letter: Women at Capitol stand up against harassment One hundred and thirty women signed a letter urging people who work in the Capitol to create a culture where men and women speak up against harassment and where it is safe for people to report incidents that happen in private.
Oregonian: After Trump rollback, most Oregon women will still have no-cost birth control Last week, President Donald Trump loosened an Affordable Care Act requirement that required insurance plans to offer no-cost contraception for women, allowing more employers to opt out for moral or religious reasons. But most Oregon women won't be impacted by the move, the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services reported Tuesday.
Bend Source: #MeToo Central Oregon residents contemplate #WhatNow.
The Register-Guard: Fair-pay bill just the first step toward equality The Fair Pay for All bill revamps Oregon’s existing equal pay law to strengthen its protections in several important ways, including adding all protected classes to the groups of individuals who cannot be discriminated against in pay.
As a Women’s Foundation of Oregon member, you’re joining a community of over 800 individuals who donate their time, efforts, and/or funds to improve the lives of women and girls in Oregon.