May 28, 2024
VFN Conference

Collective action ushers in community-wide impacts. This principle underlies the Virginia Funders Network (VFN), a statewide association of 130+ philanthropy organizations seeking to address the region’s most urgent needs. At the beginning of May, the VFN held its 3rd annual conference in Richmond, a sold-out event that drew over 300 members of the Commonwealth’s philanthropic community. The Community Foundation’s Sari Raskin, Vice President of Grants and Community Leadership, and Renée Byng Yancey, President and CEO, had the opportunity to attend the event. There, they learned about the issues Virginians face and the innovative programs emerging to address those issues.

Inspiring Innovation through the Virginia Funders Network 

Sari has served on the VFN’s advisory board since the organization’s inception in 2020. This position has encouraged a close relationship between VFN and the Community Foundation, allowing us to watch the Network grow. At the first annual conference in 2022, Sari saw philanthropy executives, trustees, and staff members from across Virginia exchange ideas and connect.

This powerful collaboration between Virginia philanthropists helped inspire the Community Foundation’s efforts to expand the VMAP program throughout the Commonwealth.

Sari Raskin’s Work at VFN

The VFN’s 2024 conference was double the size of its 2022 one, allowing Sari to network with representatives from community, corporate, healthcare, and private foundations across Virginia. The conference’s size also enabled Sari to gain valuable insights for the Community Foundation on crucial issues, including philanthropic investments in environmental causes and local journalism. 

Furthermore, Sari learned about inspiring local initiatives. These include programs that address workforce programs and the private sector, confront health inequity in the Commonwealth, and employ the power of art to build community. The ideas Sari exchanged with other conference participants are helping Virginia communities to thrive.

Impact Your Area Through the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia  

Next year’s VFN conference is scheduled for April 28-30th, 2025. However, families and individuals interested in local philanthropy can explore opportunities today through the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia. Whether you want to donate to a cause, establish a family fund, or explore our network resources, our team can help you invest in your community. Contact our philanthropic team today to get started.