A World On Pause - A Gen Z & Millenial Lens
Updated: Mar 19
Authored by - President of Keep Families Giving Foundation, Chelsea Toler-Hoffmann
2nd Writer & Editor - Vice Chair of KFG, Michal Ann Morrison
Gen Z & Millenial Subject Experts - Vice Chair of KFG, AnneMarie McComb, Advisory Board Member, Teva Ferguson, Advisory Board Member, MC Deskins, SXSW Official Next Gen Artist, Lili Hickman Waldron
It seems somewhat humorous now that an intimate group of next gen philanthropists gathered around my dining room table just a few short months ago to begin brainstorming and formulating a mission to “launch a new generation of philanthropy across sectors and generations for social good.”
While at the time we had no clue of the journey we were all about to embark on or our true call to action and purpose (considering the current times), one thing became undeniably clear in that moment -- we had to care for one another, the community, and the world, and we were committed to helping contribute to a movement larger than ourselves.
The Keep Families Giving Foundation next gen community remains committed now more than ever to this shared movement and mission.
What can Next Gen do?
Practice Social Distancing - We STRONGLY encourage every single Gen Z and Millennial to practice social distancing and to use your voice to inspire others to take Covid-19 seriously.
Stay Educated - We have found this scientific study very helpful in explaining Covid-19 and the importance of suppression over mitigation (Furgeson, 2020). We received this study and information through a mentor in our KFG community. If you are a mentor make sure you are sharing information and resources with your Gen Z and Millennial mentees.
Get Started - Build Communities of Givers & Continue Collaborating - While we may not be able to meet in person, we certainly have the opportunity to continue to make change and better the world together. We are being tasked with helping to try and protect society through social distancing measures, yes, but also to continue to build communities of givers and fuel innovation in new ways, despite the negative impacts of the virus. Check out an initiative that one of our next gen advisory board members, Susannah Haddad, has started- Beautify Today, Sustain Tomorrow: An Art Auction. We hope this inspires you to get started.
Listen to the KFG Next Gen Community -- Our next gen advisory board members and community have shared their thoughts on how next gen can contribute during these times. A few examples include:
“In this unprecedented time, it can feel strange to adopt new behaviors and press pause on our normal lifestyles. But we’re being presented with a unique opportunity to serve our community by thinking in terms of ‘us’ and ‘we’ instead of ‘me.’ American society prizes individualism, but without working together, the risk is much greater to all of us. I’m hopeful that by wholeheartedly embracing this opportunity to think about implementing lifestyle changes for the good of those around us, a cultural renaissance embracing the importance of relationships and innovative cooperation will emerge in our society as a whole.”-Michal Ann Morrison
“These past few weeks have been difficult and emotional for us all, but have been particularly scary for the ill, the immunocompromised, the elderly, and the small business owners. Before you think that social distancing does not apply to you, please think about the ramifications it could have on someone close to you.” AnneMarie McComb
"As a fifth generation board member, and native Houstonian now residing in Austin, I have been able to see the importance of supporting your community especially through crisis. This is just the beginning, and we have a duty to stay home and keep our community healthy. If you have the means, consider donating to those who will not be covered or have lost their source of income. If you have ideas, share them with fellow leaders so we can emerge better than we were before." MC Deskins Fondren (Fondren Foundation)
"I was excited to finally be SXSW official this year, and took two weeks off of my job to to prep, record some, and then play for a week and a half. Once all of my shows canceled and the corona virus got more serious, I realized that as someone with a compromised immune system I needed to be more careful than others. However, now all of the store fronts for our jobs are either completely shut down, or the hours have been cut tremendously, so I’m very much cut off from my regular life. Probably over the course of the next two months without my shows and without our jobs we will lose more money than I want to even think about. Our band works pay check to pay check so we can do what we love and play music. The idea we won’t be playing a show, and I won’t be around people until possibly May is heart breaking. However if keeping myself shut away for now helps keep my friends and family safe, it’s what needs to be done." Lili Hickman Waldron (daughter of Sara Hickman and a part of Austin's beloved Hickman Family )
“I am hopeful that a lot of good will come from this. Look at the canals in Italy and how they’ve cleared. How animals have started to return. Look at the pollution clearing in China...look at what can change when we take a step back. As for the individual, read, paint, draw, or write. Find a new passion or dive into one that you never had time for. Reflect on yourself and your life and make plans for the future” - Teva Ferguson
A Time For Opportunity
Make no mistake, this is a time of opportunity for Millennials and Gen Z to share our love for humanity and our ability to give more than we take. When our world has forced a pause, a reset, many might even say a complete do-over -- How can we unite in our efforts to show love and kindness across generational, sector, and geographical lines? We invite you to join us in re-envisioning what this new generation of philanthropy looks like while we tackle the challenges ahead.
What do you want to do, who do you want to be, and what do you want to be remembered for when the world on pause moves to a world on a mission to restart? What we need now more than ever is love, kindness, and innovative collaboration, and at KFG, we are dedicated to giving a platform to those looking to help others.
KFG & Community Partner(s) Messages, Resources, & Links
Please find links to projects, resources, and ways to continue your giving journeys. KFG has included our own links as well as links from some of our community partners below. #keepfamiliesgiving #Millenialmindfullness #SupressionNOTMitigation
KFG Project & Article Links
Beautify Today, Sustain Tomorrow: An Art Auction (for artists and collectors).
Please provide your information if interested in engaging in Beautify Today, Sustain Tomorrow, as an artist, funder or collector (a collaboration between Susannah Haddad, Chelsea Toler- Hoffmann, and Aida Murad)
Project Hope (write a kind note and or share an encouraging quote with the community):
Find some inspiration in UN SDSN Youth’s Blog about KFG’s most recent summit:
Link to Resources from our Community Partners:
As we stay home 🏠 we can remain active online 📱 Here are 3 steps we can take ⬇️
✅ Help spread verified facts
✅ Encourage others to take fact-based action
✅ Together we can #flattenthecurve — and save lives 💪
Basics of Story Design
Mentor SJ Murray has offered to share this course for free with code Q2020
Powerful Words from Notley
As our communities, neighbors, and friends face uncertainty in the wake of COVID-19, we are hopeful that during this time of crisis we reflect on not only what we need personally but as a whole. Notley’s perspective is one to focus on - innovation thrives in the face of great challenges. We are surrounded daily by innovators and change makers that rise to the occasion and dedicate their time and resources to purpose and impact. COVID is no different, and will continue to spark a new wave of innovation.
As givers, we play a strong role in our community through knowledge, collaboration and capital. As we embark on the next few weeks and months, let’s not waste time in our duty as good neighbors and citizens.
Parker Jazz Club & Texas Jazz Society
As a result of Covid 19, Parker Jazz Club subsequently worked to close the club and launch a livestream channel to broadcast exclusive jazz performances in real time to music lovers in Austin and beyond. Learn more here.
Support Lili Hickman Waldron (Flora & Fawna - SXSW Official)
YOUnify: Scientific research - Fifty percent of each donation to the YOUnify Coronavirus Action Fund will go to support work by Australian scientists to conduct clinical trials on a promising treatment for COVID-19 that combines existing drugs which are available in generic (plentiful and low cost) form. This could yield a broadly usable treatment in 2-3 months or sooner. This is a distinct effort from those to develop vaccines, which will not be ready for 12-18 months at the earliest. The funding will be directed to clinical trials across 50 hospitals and a preventative trial of up to 40,000 nursing home residents. The other fifty percent of each donation will go to a US Campaign to reduce the spread and mitigate the impact of COVID-19. YOUnify is uniquely positioned to run a cross-sector campaign to #FlattenTheCurve in the United States. Contact - email@example.com.
A shared document to help keep track of rescheduled nonprofit events has been shared with KFG.
Influencer, Artist, & Friend of KFG -- Aida Murad
Recommended Additional Resources:
Hungry Souls for Donating Food Link
Austin Ed Fund to Give Link