Reasons for Hope: Reflection by the Numbers

This year has proven time and time again a potent reason for hope: In difficult times, communities come together. 

This year we’ve borne witness to a renewed mindset for those serving our communities: one of tenacious resolve and creative ingenuity, anchored in a firm belief that we are stronger together.  

This year we’ve seen funders of all kinds rallying toward a common cause, and new ways of giving brought to action. We’ve talked not just about what is needed—food, medical care, employment—but why some have more than others. It has strengthened our commitment to do more, to create spaces for more and different people to come together to advance real social change.

As our team thought about what 2020 has meant for us, ten reflections stood out:  

  1. Our Catalyst community met virtually 81 times with more than 1,900 funders showing up to learn and unlearn together as we dove deep into racial equity, trust-based funding, COVID-19 relief, and more. Access recordings here
  2. Through partnership with the City of San Diego, Catalyst provided $700,000 of relief funding to 199 small businesses impacted by COVID-19.  
  3. Through our fiscal partnership with the Central San Diego Black Chamber of Commerce, nearly $900,000 has been distributed to 687 local small businesses.
  4. Through YIGBY, fiscally sponsored by Catalyst, 16 seniors and veterans who have experienced homelessness will have a place to call home next year.
  5. Through our statewide alliance, we helped create Better California, working hand-in-hand with community leaders in the Northern, Central, and Southern regions of the state to set California on a more racially just course where all people can participate, prosper, and achieve their full potential.
  6. We advocated with policymakers more frequently and effectively than ever before. 
  7. We launched a new opportunity for impact investing with more than $100 million already invested across our state.. 
  8. We issued our first loan from the Women’s Empowerment Loan Fund! We’re excited to share more with you about this in the new year; here’s a sneak peek
  9. We embraced a new name and website to reflect who we’ve grown to be.
  10. We welcomed an outstanding leader and familiar face as our interim president.

Backing each of these high points is a thriving, committed membership community of funders. We’re grateful for the generosity, passion, and friendship of Catalyst members and are proud of the work we’ve done together to build a better region amidst challenges the magnitude of 2020. We are so much stronger together and at Catalyst, you never have to go it alone. 

Thank you so much for being part of our funder community. (Shameless plug: If you’re not a member yet, what are you waiting for? Join us!) We are glad you are here and wish you a restorative and restful end to 2020. We will be right back with you on January 4, 2021 with more learning and collaboration opportunities on the horizon!