My whole career has been dedicated to systemic change. I am led by a deep passion and persistent optimism to believe that it is possible to design a healthcare system, or an education system, or a justice system that actually serves communities in a positive way.
What does it take to change systems? Usually, it's money. Changing where the money goes in the system. Different input, different output.
That’s why I’m super excited to be doing some work with Divest-Invest Philanthropy. Divest-Invest is a movement among philanthropic leaders to divest their holdings from fossil fuels and re-invest in climate solutions. So far, 500 institutions and 50,000 individuals - managing assets in excess of $3.4 trillion- have pledged to move their money out of the industries that are directly contributing to global warming and to invest instead in renewable energy, energy efficiency, clean tech, sustainable agriculture, water conservation, energy access and climate justice initiatives.
This is system change at work--an active re-allocation of funds that can change the economic game and lead the transition to a new sustainable economy that protects our planet and the communities most at risk.
So what does that LOOK like? I'm only a few weeks into my project with Divest-Invest and I'm already stoked about all the exciting investments that participating foundations are making. Here are a few examples:
Expanding the Market for Sustainably Sourced Food
In Portland, Ecotrust is strengthening the regional economy by creating direct relationships between urban and rural food producers. This allows high quality sustainably grown food to reach wider local distribution and become more affordable. On top of an online platform that connects food growers to local markets and restaurants, Ecotrust is also building The Redd, a working hub that will give farmers a place to sell to large local buyers, like hospitals and schools.