Impact Stories

Growing Philanthropy, Responding to Need and Seeding Innovation in Northern Virginia

Learn about our impact on the local community and beyond. During the past 2 years the Community Foundation awarded $20 million in grants and scholarships and now reports $96 million in managed philanthropic assets. Here’s how we are putting philanthropy to work.

If you would like to contribute to an impact story please contact Alex Carey, Manager of Communications and Events.
October 8, 2020

In 2020, the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia launched Insight Region®, a center for community research. It is a growing hub for reliable, well-researched, and actionable data and analyses on issues critical to Northern Virginia. Through this work, we seek to inform charitable giving, inspire civic and social action, and foster a more inclusive, prosperous region.

In 2021, Insight Region will focus on understanding and promoting Inclusive Prosperity – increasing self-sufficiency, expanding economic opportunity, and forging pathways for long-term movements out of poverty for all of Northern Virginia’s residents.

October 7, 2020
The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia hosted its first virtual Raise the Region Gala on Friday, October 2, 2020. Business, philanthropic, and community leaders joined us from their own homes across the region and the nation to take part in this live-streamed event.

Hosted by NBC4’s Leon Harris, 2020 Raise the Region gala is an annual mission-critical fundraiser that enables the Community Foundation to respond to need, seed innovation, and lead and convene the community. The theme for this year’s event was Building a Community that Works for Everyone.

September 22, 2020
Parkour, virtual yoga, outdoor gardening, the truth about dieting, and nutrition and sugar are just some of the projects represented by this year’s Community Foundation for Northern Virginia’s Healthy Kids Grants recipients. Seven public Elementary, Middle, and High School programs were recently selected after a competitive application process to receive grants up to $2,000 to support programs promoting healthy lifestyles through increased exercise and physical activity or healthy nutrition. The grants totaling $10,212 are for the 2020-2021 school year.

September 21, 2020
A crowd of more than 100 joined with the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia at its latest Innovation Breakfast Series: The Reinvention of Food virtual event on Thursday, September 17, 2020, to discuss the challenges facing the emergency food safety net since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Greater Washington region in March including some persistent racial and social inequities that exist, and possible paths forward to address them.

September 10, 2020
EH headshot1 300x350Today, the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia welcomes Elizabeth Hughes as the new Senior Director of Insight Region®, a research center at the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia launched earlier this year that analyzes local trends, convenes civic leaders, and promotes civic and social action.

Elizabeth has spent her career at the intersection of research and policy, helping decision-makers sort through the noise and find relevant, actionable insights to help guide operations, maximize productivity, and achieve strategic goals.
“Through the collection and curation of relevant, reliable, and actionable data, Insight Region will allow the community to explore the unique strengths and needs that define this region and to understand how investments in programs and services can make Northern Virginia more resilient, healthy, and equitable,” said Hughes.

August 20, 2020
Arlington Arts Center (AAC) and the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia are pleased to present Passage, a site-specific public artwork by artist Lynda Andrews-Barry. The work will be featured on AAC’s lawn at 3550 Wilson Boulevard in Arlington from August 22 through December 13, 2020.

Passage is the result of a unique partnership between AAC and the Community Foundation. The work was funded by the Foundation’s Ross-Roberts Fund for the Arts and is undertaken in cooperation with Arlington Public Art. Passage will include 26 large-scale sculptures created from driftwood, rebar, metal hardware, and canvas sails—designed to evoke the ships that transported more than 12 million kidnapped and enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean between the 16th and 19th centuries.

August 11, 2020
"I'm just really happy that I'm able to make a difference and want to show that Asian Americans are with health care workers and we want to unite," Sebastian Lu says

Sebastian Lu, a 17-year-old pianist in Fairfax, Virginia, who despite having his junior interrupted by COVID-19, decided not to sit on the sidelines, but was motivated to help others impacted by the pandemic by launching a GoFundMe campaign.

July 30, 2020
The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia announced today that it has awarded over $250,000 in scholarships to more than one hundred area students to support their higher education goals beginning this fall. This year’s awards went to students pursuing either undergraduate or graduate degrees in areas like STEM, medicine, health, and education, as well as students planning to attend Northern Virginia Community College.

July 20, 2020
Virtual Town Hall
The COVID-19 pandemic has pulled back the curtain and exposed longstanding structural and systemic inequities that exist in communities of color across our nation. From the education system to the labor market, to housing, health, and economic stability the coronavirus has had a disproportionate impact on African American and Latino communities.

The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia recently hosted a virtual Town Hall – Build Back – Dream Forward where local leaders representing business, education, economic development, and philanthropy gathered to raise awareness around the uneven playing field that pre-existed COVID-19 and potential paths forward for greater equity in our economic systems.

June 30, 2020
The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia announced today it has awarded $440,000 in its fifth round of COVID-19 Response Fund Grants to 22 local organizations providing relief and services to communities in the region disproportionately impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, including vulnerable and disadvantaged communities.