By Curt Detjen, President and CEO
For years, area residents have used the term “Happy Valley” to describe the place we call home. While that is how many would describe our region, we heard clearly in many of the 3,000+ surveys provided to Imagine Fox Cities (one of our community initiatives) that not all are feeling this way. The Imagine Fox Cities vision states that our community must be a place where we all belong:
“A place with a visible culture of caring, generosity, and compassion. Ours is a community where helping each other is habitual—as mentors, as neighbors, as volunteers. When in need, there are support systems and people eager to help. Newcomers feel welcome here. In fact, people from all walks, races, gender identities, and ages feel respected and included here. Ours is a place where people who never leave have no regrets and those who do are constantly tempted to come home.”
This vision is aspirational, and we know we have not yet arrived. We warmly join with others to work toward that vision of a community in solidarity and peace.
We are grieving with our communities over the death of George Floyd and the violence happening in the Twin Cities and communities across the country. As your Community Foundation, we work to bring people together, solve problems and build trust. We stand for equity and justice, against all racism and oppression, and support those tirelessly working for change.
We have an overwhelming responsibility to seek to right what has been wrong, and all around the world, people are raising their voices in solidarity to say that racism is wrong. We hear you and we join you. Now is the time for all our voices to be heard.
We believe the Fox Valley Region is strong and will flourish in this crisis. We can do that together, whether it’s contributing to organizations that are making a difference in the quest for racial equity and social justice, gathering to peacefully express our deepest desire for change, or reaching out to those needing comfort and support in your community.
For those who are peacefully standing up for truth and justice, we’re grateful for your bravery and solidarity in seeking justice for George Floyd’s death. At the Community Foundation we’re working to help create an equitable, just and vibrant Fox Valley where all communities and people thrive. Racial equality is something we strive for.
As a leader in philanthropy in the Fox Valley, we encourage everyone who is able to make financial contributions to organizations working to advance racial equity. Locally, we recommend contributions to African Heritage, Inc.
In the Twin Cities area, here are some additional organizations to support:
Many of our peers and partners are sharing their thoughts: