Aerial view of a forest and lake at sunrise
Aerial view of a forest and lake at sunrise

By and for the Community – Democratic Philanthropy

Every fall, we host our competitive grant cycle, which is open to any regionally focused nonprofit to apply for grant funds. As always, there are more requests than funds to distribute; and as always, the process is infused with the democratic principles that were set in motion when the Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation was created.

Our founding gift from William Hewlett, was structured as a match which was successfully raised by our community.  These first gifts created our endowment and is the basis for our community grantmaking. One of the unique strengths of a community foundation is that our resources are not driven by any one special interest. Our resources are the collective result of many donors who care about this place. This is how we approach our grantmaking as well. Each year, a volunteer committee that represents different facets of our community, comes together to help recommend the grant distributions to our Board of Directors. Together, we strive to align resources with opportunities that have been shaped by trusted partners and community engagement. This ensures that there is a readiness for resources to flow to community level solutions. Philanthropy without community readiness can be a waste of time and resources — and undemocratic.

This democratic approach to community solutions can also be seen when exploring new ideas and innovations that help fill gaps in the system. The recent launch of a COAD, which stands for  Community Organizations Active in Disaster, is a perfect example. COADs are designed to focus on community preparedness for natural disasters and other emergencies. TTCF learned about this work from other community foundations across the state and secured funding to explore the interest and relevance with other stakeholders. Over the course of a year, thanks to a seed grant from the League of California Community Foundations, our team brought multiple stakeholders together to provide input including the nonprofit sector and local governments. Together, the collective knowledge and expertise of the different agencies verified the need for a COAD, explored the best operating model to support and sustain the effort and then TTCF helped raise the funds to support the launch. Funds deployed to this effort are now ensured to have a multi-stakeholder understanding and engagement for success.  

In this Quarterly Impact Report you will learn more about the recently launched COAD,  and so much more. We are so grateful for the network of partners and donors who help ensure that there are community level solutions and resources available to respond to the important needs that our community faces today, and in the future.

Stacy Caldwell

Community Organizations Active in Disaster

We are taking a “whole community” approach to disaster preparedness, in which state agencies, local governments, the private sector, and other stakeholders are actively integrated to meet the needs of residents and visitors during an emergency or disaster.”

Alison Schwedner, director of CCTT

What Is a COAD?

COADs focus on preparedness and are ready to respond with resources, volunteers, and coordination of services to those who need assistance during and immediately after a disaster. They also hold the capacity to activate a long-term recovery.

It is a national model that brings together community organizations under four principles:

Communication

The COAD promotes the sharing of information between member organizations and partners so everyone is pulling in the same direction.

Coordination

To reduce the duplication of effort that can arise in the tumult caused by an impending disaster, and in its wake, a COAD promotes a coordinated campaign that has been well planned and can be efficiently executed.

Cooperation

Recognizing that no single expert or organization has the answers for every challenge that arises during a disaster, a COAD promotes working together to overcome challenges.

Collaboration

COADs identify common goals and create effective solutions by encouraging the sharing of resources and collaboration across organizations.

TTCF serves community members within TTUSD boundaries in Placer, Nevada and El Dorado counties.

Why a Tahoe Truckee COAD?

Because our region crosses multiple jurisdictional boundaries, preparing for and activating during a disaster is much more complicated. If you live on one side of the Sierra Meadows neighborhood, you get an evacuation alert from Placer County, and if you live on the other side, you get it from Nevada County. Neither of these counties use the same service to deliver their alerts. And similar situations are played out throughout the Tahoe Truckee region.

Our region includes various agencies, service organizations, nonprofits and individual volunteers who play critical roles during a disaster. If they are not prepared to follow the same protocols, we can end up with a lot of people who are doing their best to help, but are actually making it more difficult for the professionals. That’s the real-world problem that the COAD model is designed to solve.

Why a TTCF-Sponsored COAD?

We understand that as the threat of catastrophic wildfire, extended power outages and other disruptive events have become so frequent, there is a justifiable fear in the community. 

Alison Schwedner, director of TTCF’s Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee, points out that one of the roles of a community foundation is to convene community members around pressing issues such as disaster and emergency planning.

“We are uniquely positioned to bring folks together from different sectors,” Schwedner says. “We are able to include diverse perspectives and voices in developing solutions to address those challenges.

“We recognized as a foundation that we had a unique role to play in pulling folks together to ensure that as a community we are prepared and resilient if there were to be a disaster.”

How Can a COAD Help in the Aftermath of a Disaster?

Our COAD model provides continuing support for individuals who have experienced a disaster, whether it’s an evacuation, power loss or other stress-inducing situations. Our community has a number of supports in place, such as Sierra Community House’s 24-hour Helpline, Dial 211 resource and referral line, and individual mental health services. A COAD can ensure that support services are all aligned and working well together so that people are served as effectively as possible.

The Barracuda Championship

During the summer of 2022, TTCF was fortunate enough to partner with the Barracuda Championship, an annual PGA Tour event held in Truckee, on two aligned initiatives: sustainability and inclusivity. Having been impacted by wildfires during the previous year’s tournament, the Barracuda Championship wanted to raise awareness around the impacts of wildfire and the benefits of a healthy forest. PGA TOUR players, Joshua Creel and Jonas Blixt, joined TTCF, USFS and CAL FIRE to get a birds eye view of evacuation routes, burned forests and a walk through healthy/treated forests. 

Secondly, with its commitment to advancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), the Barracuda Championship made a generous donation of $45,000 to TTCF to support these efforts. Chris Hoff, Tournament Director of the Barracuda Championship, recognizes the importance of this work, the desire to contribute positively to the quality of life in the community and the alignment of their values with those of TTCF.

“We are thrilled to have formed a partnership with such a like-minded organization as TTCF, who shares our mission of providing awareness opportunities, resources and support to the community where it’s most needed,” Hoff said. “The Barracuda Championship and the PGA TOUR realize the vital importance of expanding Diversity, Equity and Inclusion not only in golf, but in all facets of life, and we are proud to have contributed to TTCF’s efforts in growing their DEI outreach and use of Spanish translation.”

With generous support from the Barracuda Championship, TTCF was able to make a virtual event on “Evacuation Preparedness” more accessible to our Spanish speaking community with translation of marketing materials and live simultaneous interpretation at the event. This donation will also support the Community Collaborative’s On the Verge Leadership Program which focuses on advancing professional opportunities for Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) residents.

It is so powerful when two missions can complement each other and we look forward to our continued partnership with the Barracuda Championship to benefit the Tahoe Truckee community.

We, the board and staff of Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation, are in passionate pursuit of a just society and a just Tahoe Truckee community, where people of all races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, abilities, and identities have an equal opportunity to thrive.”

From TTCF’s DEI Value Statement

$5.4 M

Raised to date

$1.85 M

Granted

$1.9 M

Granted from CAL FIRE to be redistributed

21

Projects and
Programs

72%

Protect
communities

20%

Build forest
economy

8%

Accelerate market
solutions

Forest Walks

Throughout the summer, TTCF and a variety of forestry experts hosted small Forest Walks around the North Tahoe area to teach community members about healthy forests and the steps we can take to protect our region from catastrophic wildfire. Over the six walks, there were 100 community members in attendance.

TTCF and USFS Deputy Forest Supervisor, Matt Jedra, walk community members through the forest to showcase thinning treatments.

One walk, hosted in partnership with Truckee Fire District, specifically focused on engaging Firewise Community Leaders and educating them on the new resources that would be available through the Cal Fire program.

Forest Futures Salons

In September, we resumed our Forest Futures Salons with an event focused on the challenges and opportunities we are facing with workforce development. There were 85 registrants and the speakers included:

Jessica Morse, Deputy Secretary, Forest & Wildland Resilience, California Natural Resources Agency

Carlie Murphy, Forestry Education Grant Manager, Lake Tahoe Community College 

Jeffrey Clary, Sr. Director of Climate Strategies, Foundation for California Community Colleges

Watch the recording and register for our next salon here.

Welcome Anne Graham!

At the end of August, TTCF hired Anne Graham as our new Forest Futures Program Coordinator. Anne will be focused on implementing the CAL FIRE Wildfire Resilience

Block Grant Program, as well as helping build a community support program for Firewise and Fire Adapted Community efforts. Anne has a B.S. in Environmental Science from Santa Clara University and has served two AmeriCorps terms at the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center, as well as an internship with the Truckee River Watershed Council.

News

Sierra Sun: Forest health partners deploy new technology to help reduce wildfire threats

Sierra Sun: Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation receives $1.9M from Cal Fire

Sierra Sun: LTCC forestry, fire programs received funds for scholarships, equipment

Snow Brains: Big win for wildfire fuel reduction projects in Olympic Valley, CA | funding approved

Sierra Sun: TTCF Collaborates to promote forestry careers

Median Home Price

30

Days Avg. on
the Market

222

Truckee locals housed
through Landing Locals

*Statistics are as of September 2022

Project Updates

  • Housing-related code amendments took effect on July 14th in Placer County.  Notable changes include allowing smaller lot sizes and tiny homes as well as tiny home communities. Truckee will launch their version of this program in October. The Truckee Home Access Program (THAP), will offer incentives to sellers, businesses, and developers in addition to qualified buyers. 

Community Presentations

MHC presented on supportive housing at the September NLTRA Breakfast Club in partnership with United for Action, Tahoe Truckee Health and Human Services and North Tahoe Truckee Homeless Services. Watch the Recording.

Monthly Housing Expert Events & Real Estate in Region Updates for Local Private Business Employers

These events are open to any Tahoe Truckee employers who are interested in learning more about housing solutions for their employees and how they can help.

July 28: Chelsy Delia of The Rice Team at Guild Mortgage: How you can help employees purchase homes in our region

August 25: Emily Setzer, Senior Analyst of Placer County: Placer County’s recent housing-related amendments and how they can help employers house their employees through “caretaker housing” provisions

September 22: Jesse Patterson, Chief Strategy Officer of the League to Save Lake Tahoe: How employers can form successful community campaigns to promote and unify community around housing crisis & solutions

Speaker Series

MHC offered four Speaker Series events this quarter with 198 registrants. Watch the recordings and register for upcoming events here

TOPICS:

July 14: Vacant-home taxes: Can they help with the housing crisis?

July 21: The Intersection of Housing & Forestry Issues

September 7: Interim Housing through Tiny Homes 

September 16: Updates on Rental Incentive Programs with Landing/Lease to Locals

1,120,099

Meals provided (March
2020 – Sept 2022- Sierra Community House)

800

Community members supported by the Mental Health Services Act (from July  1, 2021-June 30, 2022)

2,929

Respite Day Center guest visits (July 2021 – June 2022, North Tahoe Truckee Homeless Services)

Mental Wellness Partners Annual Update

School and community-based family and youth strengthening programs are effective in reducing the incidence, prevalence, and impact of mental health issues and promote wellness in the community. In September, Tahoe Truckee partners funded through the Mental Health Services Act came together to provide an annual update to the Campaign for Community Wellness. In total, over 800 community members have been supported by their services (from July  1, 2021-June 30, 2022).

Resource Sharing Meetings

This quarter’s monthly Resource Sharing Meetings were focused on white supremacy culture, Community Organizations Active in Disaster and the Community Health Needs Assessment. There were 24 agencies in attendance with an average of 55 participants per meeting. Spanish interpretation was available. Check out the recordings and meeting summaries here.

Community Presentations

On Tuesday, November 1, the Community Collaborative presented at the NLTRA’s Breakfast Club. Watch the presentation here (01:01:40).

November 29 – December 13

Give Back Tahoe

It’s that time of year again when we show gratitude to the 60+ nonprofits who do so much for our community. Choose an organization that supports a cause that you believe in and donate between Nov. 29-Dec. 13 to help them win a cash award from $50,000 in challenge grants.

Welcome Parisa Nodehi
Director of Operations

Parisa attended University of San Diego and Loyola New Orleans College of Law. After graduating, she primarily worked in the technology industry with a focus in the reliability of the electrical grid. However, her passion has always been in working and volunteering in her local communities and advocating for women’s healthcare rights and issues. Parisa grew up in Minnesota and spent summers in Truckee where she developed a love for the outdoors and mountain life. She now lives in Truckee where she enjoys reading and meditating by the beach, hiking, skiing, and exploring all that the Sierras have to offer.