A few common threads have run through our grantmaking over the years which have now developed into four portfolios: Local, Regional, Global, and Ecosystems. Each of these portfolios represents a different sphere of commitment for the Peery family. In each category, we select Partners who we feel are addressing the critical issues of poverty in a smart and effective manner.
In 1924, Taylor Peery came to Palo Alto to attend Stanford and since then, weʼve benefited from a community full of opportunities, ideas, and the safety to raise our families over the years. Now with a fifth generation of Peerys in Palo Alto, we are not oblivious to the challenges other young people are facing only steps away in East Palo Alto.
In a place where nearly 7 out of 10 children do not finish high school, we are compelled to support the work of leaders who are making a real difference for youth in EPA. We are only beginning to sharpen our understanding of past efforts, current challenges, and the real possibilities for closing the opportunity gap in our community.
Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area is a place that has provided us with incredible opportunities to establish and grow family businesses. As entrepreneurs, we consider it our philanthropic role to support social entrepreneurs and leading organizations as they effectively address the issues of poverty in our community.
The goal of our Regional Portfolio is to grow and support a network of solutions to poverty for youth and families in the Bay Area. We believe the most leveraged way to accomplish this with limited resources is by investing in early to mid-stage social entrepreneurs whose models have the potential to scale throughout our community and beyond. In turn, we also fund the expansion of proven national programs as they are established in the Bay Area.
Collectively, members of the Peery family have spent more than 6 years living and traveling in developing countries. Most of this time has been spent working with the poor in a service capacity. Having witnessed poverty of such a degree, we feel a responsibility to address it at some level. While eliminating global poverty is far beyond the reach of our dollars, we feel that resources invested in the right solutions can go a long way towards reducing and solving the problems of poverty.
Our goal is to create access to quality goods and services which can improve the lives and livelihoods of the poor. To achieve this, weʼre increasingly investing in market-based interventions for a couple of reasons. First, we feel that harnessing the potential of markets can achieve and sustain social impact at a larger scale than existing charitable approaches. Second, when properly executed, market-based solutions tend to interact with the poor, or their clients, in a way that provides dignity. Considering our distance from the work, this is one way we can safeguard against approaches which patronize the poor.
As with any set of foundation programs, things come along which donʼt necessarily fit, but which might help to support the ecosystems that our partners are operating within. Our Ecosystems Portfolio consists of investments in organizations, institutions, or programs which build the field of social entrepreneurship, strengthen the next generation of social innovators, and encourage more thoughtful and effective philanthropy.