By Sid Espinosa, Director, Philanthropy and Civic Engagement
At Microsoft, we invest in community programs that are innovative and focus on real problems and creative solutions. In San Francisco, Microsoft is supporting a new initiative called SF Gives, which is a partnership with Tipping Point, one of the most high-impact organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Tipping Point is tackling poverty by investing in nonprofit organizations that have the greatest impact in education, employment, and housing. The challenges in these areas are significant. There is a striking wealth divide in the Bay Area, with more billionaires residing here than ever before, yet 1 in 5 residents are living in poverty. Tipping Point’s approach is unique in that they provide not just cash support, but they also empower nonprofits through donations of communications, HR, technology, legal, board recruitment, leadership development, real estate, capital projects, strategy, evaluation and fundraising. This holistic approach has proven to be highly effective in strengthening these organizations and moving their good work forward.
The SF Gives initiative is a new coalition of Bay Area companies that raised $10 million within 60 days to support Tipping Point. Microsoft is proud to join this effort. Other companies supporting SF Gives include Apple, Box, Dropbox, Google, IfOnly, Jawbone, Jelly, Levi Strauss & Co., LinkedIn, Lookout, Okta, Partner Fund Management, POPSUGAR, RPX Corporation, Salesforce Foundation, SV Angel, Workday Foundation and Zynga. Microsoft will be focused on how technology can play a role in addressing poverty issues in the most impactful ways possible.
We believe that the business community can and should play an important role – in partnership with other sectors like nonprofit organizations, government agencies, philanthropic foundations, faith-based groups, labor associations, etc. – to address poverty in the San Francisco Bay Area. This work is not new for Microsoft. Every year, we invest tens of millions of dollars (cash, products and services) in nonprofit organizations around the world. Last year in San Francisco alone, this investment totaled $5.4 million. Now, in partnership with Tipping Point, we seek to help low-income individuals and families gain access to effective services that can help them break the cycle of poverty for good.
This work will align with Microsoft’s global YouthSpark initiative, which seeks to address the global youth opportunity divide – a gap between those who have access to the skills and training that they need to be successful, and those who do not. With more that 75 million unemployed youth around the world, YouthSpark is committed to creating opportunities for 300 million youth over three years. Through 30+ programs and partnerships with 186 youth-serving nonprofits, we are working on education, entrepreneurship and training programs in over 100 countries around the world. While this is a global program for Microsoft, we work locally. And here in San Francisco, we know that Tipping Point will be a great partner in addressing the Bay Area challenges because they are already having a positive and significant impact.
More information can be found here.