Archive for the 'Grantees by Category' Category

San Francisco Urban Film Festival

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, 2018, 2019, Art, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Type, Grantees by Year

Folks enjoy City Is Alive, socially distant on Egbert Avenue, a night of musical performances and interactive murals to celebrate the legacy of everyday heroes that brought joy and life to the Bayview. Photo: Lucas Bradley

Felipe Riley dances in front of an interactive mural projection of his mother, Lenora LeVon, during City is Alive. .Photo: Shantré Pinkney

Folks gather in an unfinished ground-level unit in the East Cut district of San Francisco for a film screening and panel discussion.

A film screening and panel discussion in Fern Alley, San Francisco, where audience members sit in chairs or on blankets.

Participants drafting stories at a Storytelling Workshop at the SFUFF’s 6th annual film festival in 2020.

Audience members gather in the Bayanihan Center for a SFUFF film screening and panel discussion, co-presented by SOMAP Pilipinas, on how different grass-roots organizations use arts and culture to promote community preservation and self-determination. Photo: Emma Marie Chiang

Participants work in small groups during a Storytelling Workshop in partnership with Young Community Developers aimed at building Black intergenerational wealth in the Bayview. Photo: Austin Blackwell

San Francisco Urban Film Festival
2019 – $5,000 General Support 
2018 – $5,000 General Operating Support
2017 – $5,000 Climate Change Programming


The SF Urban Film Fest (SFUFF) gathers a diverse, engaged audience and uses the power of storytelling to spark discussion and civic engagement around urban issues. They ask what it means to live together and create just and equitable cities.

SFUFF is an interdisciplinary storytelling organization that produces an annual film festival, year-round film-based discussion events, and long-term community storytelling projects.

They collaborate with cultural, academic, grass-roots, and civic organizations including the Roxie Theater, SPUR, Imprint City, Bay Area Video Coalition (BAVC), and many others. Projects are often jointly initiated to combine film and community planning, most recently with Young Community Developers (YCD) in the Bayview Hunters Point and SOMA Pilipinas Cultural Heritage District in the SOMA district of San Francisco. In recognition of their impact on empowering communities using storytelling and film, the SFUFF are Artists in Residence at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA).


Film Festival
Since its founding in 2014, SFUFF has produced an annual film festival for 7 seasons and year round programming encompassing 115 events reaching over 8,000 people. They expect to reach many more through their virtual film festival in February 2021.

Based on their festival surveys, year after year, SFUFF attracts diverse audiences and reaches across demographic divides. Its 6th annual film festival audience was 53% people of color. Their audience was also remarkably intergenerational: 18% are aged under 25, 69% are between 26-55 years old, and 13% are aged 55+.

SFUFF engages with diverse filmmakers and panelists. 63% of our 2020 Festival filmmakers are people of color; most notably, 44% of our 2020 Festival filmmakers are women of color. Additionally, 74% of our 2020 Festival panelists are people of color.

Community Storytelling
SFUFF’s community storytelling projects create opportunities for unique cross disciplinary partnerships between community organizations, businesses, cultural institutions and public agencies.

In partnership with YCD, they organized storytelling workshops and produced a short video to kick off the Black Owner’s Campaign. The goal was to build a strong narrative aimed at galvanizing a coalition of Black property owners to support more affordable housing. The resulting video features prominently on the YCD homepage and has resulted in a local developer expressing interest in building housing for Black teachers.

The storytelling and community planning with YCD led to the production of a multi-media one-night socially distant event featuring a live streamed hip hop concert and interactive film projections depicting historic murals. The event, City is Alive, was centered on the theme of everyday heroes who fight for resources and bring joy to the Bayview Hunters Point and was produced in collaboration with Imprint City and YBCA.

SFUFF is working with the SOMA Pilipinas Cultural Heritage District on a short documentary film that chronicles the displacement of Pilipinx community by the force of redevelopment in the Yerba Buena district of SOMA during the 1970’s, and the community’s resistance and struggle for self-determination that grew out of it and in face of ongoing gentrification and displacement. They are currently in community-driven pre-production with a team of Pilipinx filmmakers and archival researchers, and in late 2021, will organize work in progress screenings and community discussions centering the stories and people of the film. The process of making this film is designed to dovetail with the community planning around the creation of the cultural heritage district that already includes the famous UNDISCOVERED SF night market and Kapawa Gardens.


The SFUFF Core Team brings rich backgrounds in civic innovation, urban planning, housing finance, media, filmmaking, and the humanities. They work year-round planning events and curating programming. During the festival season, a small army of volunteers help them with photography, marketing, ticket sales, audience surveys, and more.

Our Core Team plays artistic roles as Program Producers. They also guide organizational growth and fill administrative and technical roles. The following are brief detailed bios of SFUFF’s Core Team:

Fay Darmawi, Founder and Executive Director
Fay is an urban planner, cultural producer, and community development banker. She belongs to a persecuted Chinese minority group and immigrated to the U.S. from Jakarta, Indonesia as a child.

Kristal Celik, Festival Manager
Kristal has a background in energy and mechanical engineering and identifies with her Turkish immigrant roots.

Robin Abad Ocubillo, Program Producer
Robin is an urban designer and urban planner at the City of San Francisco Planning Department and identifies as an LGBTQ Filipino-American.

Omeed Manocheri, Program Producer
Omeed is a first generation Iranian-American multimedia producer and entrepreneur with a fine arts degree. His media projects include Daily Kabob, a new digital platform to unify the MENA and DESI communities.

Susannah Smith, Program Producer
Susannah is a documentary filmmaker interested in ways race and sexuality interact with the politics of urban development. Susannah is assistant editor on the documentary “Homeroom” premiering at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2021. She identifies as an LGBTQ Jewish-American.

Ronald Sundstrom, Humanities Advisor
Ronald is a Professor of Philosophy and a member of the African American Studies, Critical Diversity Studies programs at the University of San Francisco (USF). He identifies as mixed-race Filipino-American and Black, and LGBTQ.


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Vision Zero

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Architecture, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Hank, Schulte Memorial, April 2013

Photo credit: Denver Street Partnership

Photo credit: Denver Street Partnership

Photo credit: NACTO, Urban Street Design Guide

Vision Zero
2017 – $10,000 General Support

Vision Zero Network is a nonprofit project working to advance Vision Zero – the goal of zero traffic deaths or severe injuries. Since its inception in 2015, it has helped grow the number of US communities committing to Vision Zero from 3 to more than 45. In addition, mainstream awareness of and support for the goal of safe mobility for all has grown significantly amongst elected leaders and policymakers, advocates, community members, and the private sector.

Traffic crashes cause 40,000 preventable deaths each year in the US and millions more serious injuries. And amongst youth, traffic crashes are the leading cause of death. This translates to 100 people losing their lives every day simply while walking, biking, riding transit, or driving. This equates to a mid-sized plane crashing every day, killing all passengers on board, which would certainly garner attention. But, most people are complacent about the tragedy of our daily death traffic toll.

Some communities are disproportionately harmed by traffic crashes in the US, including: children and seniors, people walking and bicycling, people of color, and low-income community members. When we factor in the health impacts of lack of physical activity due to overreliance on cars and auto-focused land use, as well as the pollution-related health impacts of motor vehicles, the already-staggering death toll of our car culture increases exponentially.

Vision Zero Network advances the goal of safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all people nationwide, whether walking, bicycling, riding transit or driving. As a learning network, they develop and share best practices, research and strategic communications. And, as an action-based campaign, they set milestones for success, help ensure accountability, elevate champions and raise public awareness. Their work includes facilitating peer exchange amongst community leaders and public sector staff leading traffic safety work on the ground, including public health and transportation professionals, policymakers, and community-based advocates. And by developing and sharing resources and setting up learning opportunities amongst peers, they help communities share promising strategies and lessons learned to advance Vision Zero. 

The Vision Zero framework treats traffic safety as a public health issue deserving of greater attention, support, and resources. Vision Zero is predicated on the understanding that these tragedies are not inevitable, but rather that we can make progress in safety by focusing on the upstream factors that influence people’s actions, particularly road design that accommodates all users and policies that prioritize safety over speed, including how speed limits are set. 

Vision Zero Network supports US communities in taking a systemic approach to reduce traffic deaths & severe injuries among all road users. Vision Zero is a new way of thinking about – and acting on – the need for safe mobility. It is both a goal and a strategy and represents a shift in three ways: First, it acknowledges that traffic deaths are preventable. Second, it is an interdisciplinary approach, coalescing diverse and necessary stakeholders to address a complex social problem. Lastly, Vision Zero is a data-based approach.

With Vision Zero, people across the nation are stepping up to declare that “Enough is enough” of the preventable loss and tragedy on our streets, sidewalks, and bikeways. Community members, mayors, transportation and public health professionals, police officers, and others are declaring that zero is the only morally responsible goal to set for safety.  They are acknowledging that we can prioritize safety while still ensuring mobility in our communities: This is a political choice. Slowly, but surely, we are seeing Vision Zero communities challenge the old paradigm that speed (or perception of speed) trumps safety.

The only acceptable goal for deaths on our streets, sidewalks, and bikeways is ZERO.

Seed Fund generously supported Vision Zero Network efforts to improve prioritization of racial and economic equity in traffic safety work. Staff focused on building knowledge, partnerships, and a long-term strategy toward centering equity in Vision Zero work. This included participation in national convenings on equity and policy implications.  In addition, they served as a resource to Vision Zero cities on this critical topic of how to ensure both effective and equitable strategies and outcomes in Vision Zero work growing around the nation. Examples of work in this area include development and sharing of resources such as “Equity Strategies for Vision Zero Practitioners” and educational webinars bringing together traffic safety leaders with racial and equity justice leaders. This has led to development of relationships and partnerships with leaders in the racial justice/transportation field and greater racial diversity on the VZ Network’s Advisory Committee. Longer-term, Seed Fund’s investment has supported the development of Vision Zero Network’s equity series, bringing together Vision Zero peers from around the country to discuss and develop traffic safety alternatives to promote both effectiveness and equity.


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Build Public Inc.

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Architecture, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Build Public Inc.
2017 – $15,000 Green Benefit Districts

Build Public is a mission-driven nonprofit that leverages creative public-private partnerships to create, finance and maintain high quality urban public space in San Francisco and beyond.


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City of Oakland

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

City of Oakland
2017 – $15,000 EcoBlocks Project


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Marin Carbon Project

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, 2018, 2019, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

MALT staff conducts a baseline assessment to determine the composition of grassland species at a ranch.

MALT staff digs a soil pit to analyze soil characteristics at different depths.

Soil scientists collect soil samples that will measure changes in organic carbon through time (carbon sequestration); soil texture and bulk density (structure and compaction); soil pH (acidity); and soil fertility (nutrient availability).

A soil scientist takes a sample which will be analyzed for bulk density, a measurement of compaction.

Compost is applied to a grazed rangeland at Stemple Creek Ranch. 

Marin RCD staff maps the location of compost application onto different pastures.

A profile of native grass and its root system.  photo credit: PRathmann

Marin Carbon Project
2019 – $20,000 Carbon Cycle Institute
2018 – $20,000 Point Reyes Carbon Farming
2017 – $20,000 Point Reyes National Seashore Carbon Farm Plan

As much as one-third of the surplus CO2 in the atmosphere driving climate change has resulted from land management practices, including agriculture. Carbon farming, a whole-farm approach to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and promote long-term carbon sequestration in agricultural ecosystems, holds the potential to significantly reduce GHG by increasing the rate of transfer of atmospheric carbon dioxide to plant material and the soil organic carbon pool, leading to enhanced soil health and increased farm productivity. 

Years of rigorous research undertaken by the Marin Carbon Project (MCP), under the leadership of UC Berkeley Professor Dr. Whendee Silver, has culminated in robust confirmation of the GHG-mitigating efficacy of organic matter amendment on rangeland soils. Dr. Silver’s research demonstrated that agricultural land management practices can measurably increase rates of carbon sequestration, resulting in enhanced soil quality and soil water holding capacity and increased soil carbon and forage production (Ryals and Silver 2013). 

With this research and field validation, MCP integrates carbon farm planning into the existing conservation planning program that help land managers meet their natural resource management goals while supporting productive lands, thriving streams, and on-farm wildlife habitat. The program is applicable to a diversity of land uses and enables MCP partners to identify and quantify practices to increase carbon sequestration and reduce GHG emissions on farm in a whole-farm planning context. These practices support climate change resiliency by reducing atmospheric CO2 levels, improving soil health, water holding capacity, and crop and forage production. By increasing soil water holding capacity, carbon farm practices promote water conservation, reduce overland flow and sediment and nutrient transport, reduce irrigation needs and reduce stream withdrawals, thereby enhancing water quality and instream habitat. Agroforestry practices, such as hedgerows, silvopastures and windbreaks, sequester CO2 while enhancing on-farm microclimate and wildlife and pollinator habitat.

MCP prescribes these climate-beneficial practices by completing Carbon Farm Plans for farmers. MCP partners have completed 19 CFPs across 8,000 acres for dairy and grazing operations in Marin County. The plans have been used to inform Drawdown Marin and the new (2020-2030) Marin County Climate Action Plan. Carbon farm plan data has been used to scale up and estimate agriculture’s potential to meet the goal of reducing GHG emissions and enhancing carbon sequestration on the working lands of the county. An average of eight practices are prescribed in each plan which, if implemented, would collectively sequester 11,585 MTCO2e annually. Over twenty years, this is 258,237 MTCO2e sequestered. The Marin County Climate Action Plan establishes an annual target of 55,752 MT CO2e reduced or sequestered on county working lands, with a target date of 2030.

MCP has already begun the work of helping farmers with practice implementation. In partnership with farmers, public agencies and the Seed Fund, MCP has kicked off the implementation of climate-beneficial practices as prescribed in plans. These practices are improving water quality and quantity for farms and fisheries on coastal agricultural lands. Practices are collectively sequestering 136.2 MTCO2e annually (108 cars driven per year), as calculated using COMET-Planner, an on-farm GHG model developed by Colorado State University, USDA-NRCS and the Marin Carbon Project. Cumulatively, the completed carbon farm practices total: 3,088 linear feet of hedgerow; 1,315 linear feet of 2-3 row windbreak; 2 acres of silvopasture; 518 linear feet of riparian planting; 0.34 AC of critical area planting, and 23.5 acres of compost application.  A total of 2,542 trees and shrubs were planted in conjunction with implementation of these plans. 

The Seed Fund has supported the following MCP endeavors:

  • Carbon Farm Plan Development and Implementation
  • Soil Sampling
  • Assessment of carbon farming potential in the Point Reyes National Seashore
  • Programmatic environmental review of carbon farming practices for streamlined permitting


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Marin Agricultural Land Trust

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Marin Agricultural Land Trust
2017 – $15,000 Carbon Farm Plan


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Holding Ground Project

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Holding Ground Project
2017 – $8,000 Film Project Raising Awareness of Conserved Land to Adapt to Climate Change

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Save the Bay

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Save the Bay
2017 – $10,000 Community-Based Habitat Restoration Program


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Earth Law Center

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, 2019, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Earth Law Center
2019 – $10,000 General Support
2017 – $10,000 Biodiversity Rights Ordinance

Mission: Earth Law Center (ELC) works to pass a new generation of Earth-centered laws in the United States and worldwide, including by seeking legal rights for Nature. California and the San Francisco Bay Area has long been a focal point of our work.

Introduction to Earth Law: Traditional environmental law has failed. Despite the passage of thousands of environmental laws and policies in the U.S. and globally, Nature’s health continues to decline. We must awaken from the misguided belief that exploiting and destroying Nature leads to prosperity. Earth law, or ecocentric law, is an effort to remake the legal system in ways that promote a better balance between human needs and the needs of those ecosystems that we inhabit. 

Goal: ELC’s long-term goal is to build a system of law that aligns human activities with biological constraints on a livable, thriving planet. In the U.S., our strategy to this end is to empower local movements and help them pursue regulatory and legal changes that are more protective of Nature. 

Strategy: ELC works throughout the USA and globally using the following strategies:: 

1. Write model laws that are “ecocentric”—i.e., ecosystem well-being is the primary concern;
2. Work to put ecocentric laws into practice in order to restore ecosystems to health; and

3. Train the next generation of legal professionals to help save the planet; and

Grassroots Campaigns: Much of ELC’s work operates at the local level. ELC provides pro bono legal support to communities wishing to apply new, cutting-edge legal frameworks that are more protective of Nature.  With legal movements growing to give legal rights to Nature and recognize the human right to a healthy environment, amongst others, communities and governments need help drafting strong new laws. Not only does ELC draft these laws, but we also teach other lawyers to do similar work.

History: After being founded in Florida in 2009, ELC spent its formative years operating out of the San Francisco Bay Area, where it hired its first Executive Director and co-founded the Bay Area Rights of Nature Alliance. Since then, ELC has engaged in law and policy campaigns throughout the Bay Area and California, protecting rivers under the Clean Water Act, advancing new “Earth-centered” laws and policies, and building a movement of legal professionals who work to transform the legal system to better protect Nature. Over the years, ELC has also established a national and global presence with team members in Washington State, New York, and Mexico City, amongst other places. 

Seed Fund Projects: ELC is a proud recipient of two grants from Seed Fund advancing our work. The first project involved advancing the Rights of Nature in San Francisco with an emphasis on Nature’s inherent right to thriving biodiversity. The second project involved new policies that promote native, low water usage, drought-resistant tree species in San Francisco. For both projects, ELC wrote in-depth policy reports, met with a broad range of stakeholders and governmental officials, and submitted formal proposals for new laws/policies that are under consideration in 2021. Through this work, we hope to create a blueprint for a future in which humans and Nature thrive together in harmony in the San Francisco Bay Area. We also hope that new laws will not only protect Nature, but also restore it to health. 

Other Recent Wins: In addition to our work with Seed Fund, here are some of ELC’s wins from the last year or so:

  1. ELC won a major Clean Water Act lawsuit against the State of California, helping to ensure that river pollution is fully addressed by state agencies.
  2. ELC assisted the Nez Perce tribe to write a declaration establishing the rights of the Snake River (Idaho), including its right to flow, based on Native American rights.
  3. ELC successfully secured the promotion of the Rights of Nature within the Convention on Biological Diversity, which was unprecedented for an environmental treaty. 
  4. ELC submitted 8 amicus briefs on the Rights of Nature and human environmental rights in Latin America over the last year. Some have resulted in victories, including a ruling in Oaxaca, Mexico, to restore the health of two rivers, the Atoyac and Salado. 
  5. ELC assisted the State of Colima in Mexico to pass a groundbreaking state constitutional amendment recognizing the Rights of Nature. 
  6. ELC released a law school coursebook entitled “Earth Law: Emerging Ecocentric Law” with Wolters Kluwer as the publisher (September 2020). Numerous law schools and university programs will teach from the book beginning Spring 2021.
  7. ELC drafted a Declaration on the Rights of the Southern Resident Orcas that received 15 organizational endorsements and support from several Washington State legislators.
  8. ELC secured a proclamation by the El Salvadoran Legislative Assembly recognizing that “forests are living entities” with human duties to care for, preserve, and respect forests.
  9. ELC is co-hosting a summit with the federal government of Nigeria to explore a new national law on the rights of rivers, which would be unprecedented in Africa.
  10. ELC earned 35+ media mentions in the last year, including in the Guardian, the Chicago Tribune, NBC News, and numerous environmental magazines.

Learn More: Visit www.earthlawcenter.org. You can also sign up for our newsletter or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

YouTube Videos About Our Work:

General https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lubNvaTigAU
Ocean Rights https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LH31biWQgt0 
River Rights https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2p7EfOKaFA


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Dredge Research Collaborative

Posted by on Jul 02 2020 | 2017, Ecology, Grantees, Grantees by Category, Grantees by Year

Dredge Research Collaborative (DRC)
2017 – $10,000 Silt, Sand & Slurry: Sedimentary Infrastructure and the Geography of Dredge” Book Publication Project

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