A Year in Review: A Letter from the Foundation’s Executive Director

Dear Partners and Friends,
As I reflect on 2019, I’m reminded just how fast time flies and how much work there is still to do to improve the outcomes of every child cradle to career. The Foundation for Tacoma Students has spent the last nine years mobilizing a community that now includes more than 295 diverse partners – all who have expressed solidarity in the belief that every Tacoma child has what it takes to succeed in school, career, and life. And yet, we know solidarity isn’t enough. The Foundation has worked over the years to curate and codify learnings from more than 100 of our community partners in order to address the complex challenges preventing youth from realizing their potential.
From catalyzing programs through Graduate Tacoma’s Collaborative Action Networks to influencing policy change at the state level, the Foundation for Tacoma Students is committed to collective action because we know that our youth cannot be served by one organization alone. It takes all of us.
In January 2020, the Foundation will release its first-ever annual strategy and financial report. This report will provide you with a clear and succinct understanding of how the Foundation functions to support your community movement. The Foundation will also begin work with a cohort of 38 community-based organizations to best understand the levers of systems change and define the various types of equity that require meaningful attention if we are to realize the success of every child. Most importantly, in 2020, the Foundation will begin the groundwork for the 2030 community-goal reset. Engaging partners from across Tacoma, the Foundation will use community feedback to identify the new bold and audacious goal for 2030. With so much more to accomplish, I want to be sure that we all take a moment to reflect on all that has been achieved. Celebrating the gains – big or small – and using that to fuel us into the next decade. The road ahead will not be easy, but if we continue to work in meaningful partnership and truly align our efforts to support the children of our community, we will realize a stronger future for all Tacoma residents.

Tafona Ervin, Ed. M | Executive Director
Foundation for Tacoma Students