Inspiring stories: Why it’s important to share stories of philanthropy

Now’s the time to Make It Happen! Victoria

How do we inspire others, particularly the next generation, if we don’t share what we’re doing today to give back, asks Marlena Salvador, a member of the Victoria Foundation’s Gadsden Initiative.

How do we inspire others, particularly the next generation, if we don’t share what we’re doing today to give back, asks Marlena Salvador, a member of the Victoria Foundation’s Gadsden Initiative.

“If we’re all silent donors, then how will we inspire the next generation.”

The observation by Victorian Marlena Salvador likely resonates with many of us who find our philanthropic endeavours largely personal, and not something we shout from the rooftops.

But Marlena, a new member of the Victoria Foundation’s Gadsden Initiative, also recognizes the downside of that – as she says, how do we inspire others, particularly the next generation, if we don’t share what we’re doing today?

It’s with that goal in mind that Marlena is now firmly committed to sharing both her philanthropic journey and the importance of giving back to her community.

As the only child from a single-parent family, her personal experience living with less inspired her to join HeroWork, a Victoria-based non-profit facilitating radical building renovations for other non-profits. Here, as the Philanthropy and Communications Manager, she’s passionate about architecture, interior design and transforming charities.

Keen to do more for her community, Marlena took her philanthropic journey one step further, and with husband Nick, joined the 2021-2022 Gadsden Initiative cohort. Now in its second year, this Victoria Foundation initiative brings together GenXers and Millennials to build relationships within the community through learning sessions, community activities and networking opportunities based on the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

While one of the Initiative’s end goals is to create permanent endowment funds that will support the community through grant-making, it’s also about connecting new donors with different organizations, learning about the needs of the community and how they align with the UN’s Global Goals. Areas that resonate for Marlena and Nick include the environment and sustainability, and food security.

“I just want to leave something behind when I go and to know that I’ve done something and helped move the needle,” she says.

To learn more about the Gadsden Initiative and joining the next cohort, visit victoriafoundation.bc.ca/gadsden-initiative

READ MORE: Engaging a new generation of community-minded citizens

Make It Happen, Victoria

The Gadsden Initiative isn’t the only way to give back. Donations made to the Victoria Foundation’s Community Action Funds before May 14 will help vital programs in our community this year.

Read the 2022 Make it Happen! guide to explore how your gift can make a difference, learn more about trust-based philanthropy and how it’s shaping the Foundation’s work.

You’ll also learn of the tremendous impact you can have by supporting community organizations in this exceptional time of need.

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Blue Heron Fund for Kids – Have your gift matched

Your gift to the Blue Heron Fund for Kids will have twice the impact and will ensure that children and their families have access to the resources they need to thrive. All money raised through the fund will be distributed through Victoria Foundation’s trusted Community Grants Program. The Blue Heron Advisory Group will match donations to the fund until May 14, 2022 up to $250,000.

For more information about the Blue Heron Fund for Kids and the inspiration behind this match, visit victoriafoundation.bc.ca/the-blue-heron-fund-for-kids/

Vital Signs is on the way!

With spring’s arrival, Victoria’s Vital Signs won’t be far behind! Watch for this year’s survey launching in May, your opportunity to weigh in about the issues facing the region – where we’re doing well and areas that could use a little help.

The results of the survey, paired with local statistics and research, form the basis of the annual Victoria’s Vital Signs community check-up, a way to connect philanthropy to community needs and opportunities.

Learn more today at victoriafoundation.bc.ca

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