Laura Rock began The Laura and Jason Rock Family Foundation in early 2017. What started off as a general challenge to “help women” evolved into a specific vision of empowering young women of color exiting county run services in Pittsburgh. As the Rock Family Foundation (RFF) began meeting with the funder and programming communities the mission grew – these programs needed miscellaneous and operational funding so they could focus on their missions instead of on their feelings of scarcity and lack. These organizations and the population they served wanted advocacy and collaboration.
RFF began to seek out the organizations that were partnering with others and the programs that were outside the county-funded systems. Bringing fresh ideas, new viewpoints and multi-faceted solutions are just as important as funding. And the way that grants are delivered is streamlined and different. RFF prioritizes the conversation. A synergy or two. An opportunity to band together with other programs. A memo and a handshake. These steps replace the traditional routes that programs were used to requesting funding. And Laura wanted to walk the line between the old ways and the new ways bringing together the best of both modalities.