Catalyst. Generational. Transformation. We know these are big words. But we are willing to work towards them, learning day by day, month by month, and engaging with the heart of the communities throughout Whatcom County and with expert resources here in our community, across the state, nation and the world.
Individuals, families, neighborhoods and communities are becoming stronger, healthier, more resilient and more compassionate, generation after generation.
To identify and fund catalytic, transformative initiatives that result in sustainable change.
Mount Baker Foundation focuses on three areas for our work, organized under three board committees responsible for engaging, researching, and understanding issues and potential solutions. While each committee has a specific focus, there is a shared theme of working upstream from each issue to work towards transformational and sustainable change. These are big words, but we will keep listening, learning, and growing to make a difference in our community and its future.
Mount Baker Foundation’s funds come from the legacy of Mount Baker Kidney Center which provided high quality outpatient dialysis services to Whatcom County for almost 40 years. In honor of this legacy, Mount Baker Foundation will always retain a focus for improving the quality of life for individuals with Chronic Kidney Disease. This includes programs addressing immediate needs, work to facilitate transitions to dialysis and access to transplants, and improvements in kidney research and dialysis innovation. Collaborating with other Mount Baker Foundation committees, we also seek to reduce the instance of CKD by addressing upstream factors and social determinants of health which cause diabetes and high blood pressure, both precursors to CKD.
Healthy childhood development begins before pregnancy with the health of the mother and the family into which the baby will be born. Inequities and negative social determinants of health disrupt normal child development and can lead to poor adult health and social functioning. Mount Baker Foundation seeks to work collaboratively across our communities to reduce and mitigate stressors that impact childhood development.
Not everyone has enjoyed the support of a resilient, healthy family, safe and stable housing, enough food on the table, and an income level to support this and a full education. We think of these as “upstream factors” to chronic conditions (including, but not limited to chronic kidney disease which drives our MBKC Legacy work). By disrupting the cycles of poverty, homelessness, and food insecurity, we strive to improve equity and ensure our communities enjoy better health generation after generation. We work to empower communities to identify and address their priorities, creating greater opportunity for sustainability.
Unlike most foundations, Mount Baker Foundation does not have an annual grant cycle nor do we accept incoming requests or applications. The work of the Board is done through its committees, which investigate and research key issues in their areas of focus, engage stakeholders, and listen carefully to all those involved. We actively seek experts in these areas, whether locally, across the state or nation. And we want to learn from what other communities are doing – even on a global basis.
Mount Baker Foundation works with Whatcom County’s Health Department, the Community Health Assessment, and the Community Health Improvement Plan to center its work as well as the research and documentation of other community organizations. Our approach may be issue based (e.g. childcare), population-based (individuals with Chronic Kidney Disease) or community based (e.g. our work in East County).
While Mount Baker Foundation does not accept incoming grant requests and does not have an annual grant cycle, we welcome conversations from throughout our community on our areas of focus.
The work of Mount Baker Foundation is done through its committees, which engage community members and stakeholders in identifying issues and solutions. The committees present their recommendations to the Board, which authorizes disbursement of funds. Committees present recommendations through the lens of a decision filter which continues to evolve as we learn more and more about our work.
Once funds are approved, the recommending committee monitors implementation processes and results, and provides periodic reports to the Board.
While we do not accept incoming applications, we want to hear from you about our areas of focus. We believe change happens when all stakeholders are engaged in understanding the issues and considering solutions.