Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP) Launches Chapter in St. Louis

GCG Member Guest Blog Post

by Megan Armentrout, Program Associate, Incarnate Word Foundation and Kristin Cowart, Project Director, Saint Louis Mental Health Board

New to philanthropy? If so, you might like to know that Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP), an organization that empowers newer sector leaders, recently launched a new chapter in St. Louis. The Gateway Center for Giving partners with EPIP nationally, and is excited to support the local effort.

For more than fifteen years, EPIP has been a place where diverse practitioners come together to:

  • Learn about field of philanthropy;
  • Connect with philanthropic and nonprofit peers;
  • Navigate leadership challenges;
  • Hone their professional skillsets; and
  • Find a path forward as change agents.

EPIP envisions a world where people of all identities can live full and prosperous lives supported by a diverse, equitable, inclusive and effective philanthropic sector. The philanthropic sector in St. Louis has changed over the past decade. More young professionals–and other seasoned professionals who are new to philanthropy–have stepped into leadership roles in this field. As we are getting our feet wet, we also bring dedication, new ideas, and connections.

Things EPIP St. Louis wants the sector to know:

  • We bring a fresh perspective. Change first needs to start within our own organizations. We come with a new set of “eyes” and ideas to share.
  • We value transparency and authenticity. We are building connections and networks in new ways that can infuse innovative approaches to build a more just, equitable society.
  • We desire learning opportunities. Help immerse us in professional development opportunities, so we can become knowledgeable and effective leaders in our community.
  • We believe in this work. We believe in the power of philanthropy to advance positive social change in our region.
  • We have BIG dreams for the future. When we asked our peers their hopes for the future of philanthropy they said things like “disruptive” and “systems collaboration in the public/private sector” and “anti-racism, anti-bias framework infused in funding allocation” and “willingness to move beyond self-reflection into action.”

This is a critical time for our community and our chosen field. Together, let’s transform our words into action, and show the region that we mean what we say.

If you’re new to philanthropy and interested in learning more about EPIP, please contact EPIP St. Louis at stlouis@epip.org.

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