IECF has distributed another round of grants through its Women’s Giving Fund (WGF), which is geared to assist women in need. In its largest grantmaking cycle to date, the grants will provide resources to Inland Empire organizations that offer life-giving services to women and their families.

On April 21st at the WGF annual Spring Fling, a total of $45,000 was distributed to three nonprofits! Individual grants hit $15,000.

“We’re incredibly honored to distribute these grants that center on the needs of women in the region,” says Nefertiti Long, Board Chair of IECF and Chair of the IECF Women’s Giving Fund. “We are also grateful that this fund has continually grown through the generous support of our donors who believe in what’s possible when you come together.”

The 2024 grants will not only enhance the resources available to these nonprofits but also empower them to expand their reach and make a lasting difference in the lives of women and their families. The IECF Women’s Giving Fund remains dedicated to using collaborative philanthropy to create opportunities for women to thrive in the Inland Empire.

The 2024 grantees

Honoring women of achievement

Dr. Dowdy-Rodgers with her husband, Arlington Rodgers, Jr.

This year also marks a significant honor with the 2024 Woman of Achievement award being given to Dr. Gwen Dowdy-Rodgers, Trustee of the San Bernardino County Board of Education and President & CEO of Arrowhead United Way. Dr. Dowdy-Rodgers received $5,000 for the charity of her choice that serves women in the region.


Four finalists for the award were also honored at the Spring Fling: Pamela Deans, Executive Director of Microenterprise Collaborative of Inland So Cal; Edwina Dirk, RN, BSN Program Director, CA Nurses Educational Institute and Board Member/Caregiving Instructor of Alzheimer’s Coachella Valley;  Rebecca Ustrell Founder & Editor in Chief, Curious Publishing; and Rosa Verduzco, COO, Martha’s Village and Kitchen.

About the Fund

The Women’s Giving Fund was established in 2017, thanks to the dedicated efforts of a diverse group of professional women who wanted to create an inclusive opportunity for female donors to learn about women’s economic security issues, focus their giving on issues impacting women and children, and experience the power of collaborative philanthropy.

Celebrating IECF’s 80th Anniversary, WGF was named a Signature Fund in 2022. Since 2018, when WGF grantmaking began, more than $185,000 has been distributed to nonprofits benefiting women and families.

The Women’s Giving Fund also announced plans to commission and invest in new research to guide its grantmaking. With new data, the Fund will better understand the issues affecting the Inland Empire’s women population, ensure all contributions are applied where the need is greatest, and direct its focus to create a region where women thrive.

Depending on the amount of funding garnered each year, grants are offered at least annually through IECF. Fun fact: a contribution of $200 or more to the WGF allows donors to participate in the annual grantmaking process as they identify and support the organizations that are most in need.

These actions collectively generate a large ripple effect in the region, creating significant change and progress along the way.

For more information or to donate to the Women’s Giving Fund, visit www.

Learn more about the good work we’re doing at IECF through the power of philanthropy. Subscribe to our free monthly eNewsletter, Philanthropy Matters.

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