How did you hear about SV2?
A good friend, who was already an SV2 Partner, suggested that we might be interested and invited us to a “Get to Know SV2” event.
What made you decide to join?
Jon: With our children already ‘off to college’ we had extra time and wanted to learn more about philanthropy. SV2 made it easy to ‘try things out’ to see if we were truly interested in this type of organization.
Kwok: I had just retired from full-time corporate work and was looking for an opportunity to learn and engage in philanthropy. Education was the specific area with which I wanted to be involved. SV2 was the perfect fit – that year the Education Grant round was designed as a learning year.
How have you been involved?
Jon: I have been involved with the Education group at SV2. My first year was a Learning Year for this group so I had time to meet folks and get to know the organization. After that I participated in several other Grant Rounds. This year I am helping to facilitate another Learning Year focused on helping Partners build a deeper understanding of the current landscape of preK-12 education in California and the complexities of ensuring equal opportunity for all children.
Kwok: I am participating in my 5th Education Grant round. Somos Mayfair was our Education Grantee in 2015 – the focus was early childhood education (0-8 years of age). I was inspired by the work of Somos and especially by their ED and became a Co-Lead Partner, the liaison between Somos and SV2. Somos is working in one of the highest need areas in East San Jose by providing support to children and their families to improve education and uplift their community.
What have you enjoyed most?
Jon: I truly enjoy the learning aspects of SV2 – from presentations from great speakers or learning to research items as part of the Partner team in the Grant Rounds. I also appreciate the opportunity to hear different points of view – at one grant round session we had a small group that had totally opposite views as to how to rank the candidates AND we had a great conversation about our thought processes.
Kwok: What I have enjoyed most about SV2 is gaining a cohort of partners who are wonderful to work with and learn from. It is a joy to find like-minded people who are working to have a positive impact in our surrounding communities. Most of all I have appreciated the exposure to expert resources and amazing nonprofits in the education area.