The final day of giving thanks for solid partners and dynamic organizations brings us to a downstate group of dedicated citizens working tirelessly on a number of fronts to improve their communities: the Faith Coalition for the Common Good.
FCCG is a coalition of faith congregations, community groups, and individuals focused on people impacted by racism and poverty. They aim to lift them up with training and to give them a voice in debates that impact their families and communities. And the recently enacted school funding reform was where I worked with their members closely.
The years-long fight to fix our state’s broken school funding system wasn’t a one organization show by any means. One of the most passionate voices for change came from Springfield and the FCCG. They wanted to improve our schools for all students, sure, but they also wanted to ensure that Illinois’ minority students and students living in downstate communities didn’t get left behind as they so often do.
FCCG was a tireless partner in this fight. A careful and strategic thought partner. A powerful voice for those who are often not heard. A tenacious advocate for fairness and equity. A constant advocate for doing right by our students. In short, exactly the type of partner you want on your side in a debate like school funding reform.
Now, not only was FCCG a passionate advocate on the front lines in the fight for fair school funding, but the coalition also pushes other policy priorities, too. Their coalition members work for issues that don’t always receive the type of attention that school funding did, like their work around the Every Student Succeeds Act. Downstate FCCG members fought hard to make sure that the success of all students mattered in the new Illinois School Accountability Plan and to ensure that the new school ratings were easily understood by parents.
Every day, they are fighting for equality, civic engagement, a fair economy, and participatory decision-making. I can’t think of many organizations with such breadth and depth of advocacy areas as the Faith Coalition for the Common Good. As a policy manager at Stand, I’m constantly inspired by their work and their passion.
There are so many inspiring organizations in our state. Stand is lucky enough to work with many of them, and we are thankful for all our partner organizations. And a special thanks to everyone for following along this week as we give thanks to some organizations that personally inspired us this year. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with friends and family.
P.S.: There is still time to support Stand before the turkey goes in the oven tomorrow!