The opportunity to partner with Just Transition Collaborative (JTC) came at an opportune moment in the evolution of our organization. Since our inception, we have worked internationally, and we have been rooted locally via partnerships and collaborations. Mid-year in 2016, we made a commitment to explore how we might broaden our involvement here in Boulder County. During our summer Advisory Board retreat, we identified key thematic areas that were drawing our attention, and climate justice rose to the top as an issue that we wanted to learn more about and become involved in. At the same time, the Just Transition Collaborative was forming for the critical work of applying a social justice lens to the climate action plan of the City of Boulder.
The Just Transition Collaborative (JTC) at the University of Colorado Boulder engages in community partnerships to advance social and environmental justice in the transition from fossil fuels to a renewable-based economy and in response to climate change. We work to support leadership of underrepresented groups to foster more equitable energy, climate and employment practices and policies, and to produce community-relevant research.
As we learned more about a just transition, we recognized a reflection of Philanthropiece’s approach: namely, to empower community members as the key stakeholders of a community change initiative, using their wisdom and experience to co-create programming and to guide decisions. We were pleased to leverage the work of JTC by being the locally-based foundation partner in the Funders’ Network Partners for Places grant. This funding, along with Philanthropiece’s two-year commitment, supported in laying the groundwork for JTC to formalize their structure and, specifically, to contract Magnolia Landa-Posas as JTC’s Community Engagement Manager. Our commitment to the work deepened as we approved to dedicate a significant amount of our Community Outreach Coordinator, Neda Kikhia’s time, energy, and expertise to the partnership. Neda and Magnolia collaborated, alongside the JTC team, in the design, launch and implementation of the Climate Justice Leaders’ initiative. As the Climate Justice Leaders prepare to integrate into the wider Climate Justice Assembly, it’s an opportune time to review our partnership to determine how we can both continue to grow and deepen our organizational impact, both as individual entities and as partners. We are honored to partner with JTC and their commitment to sustainability that is rooted in social action!