UNCOMMON GOOD

Education, Health, Environment

Claremont, CA   |  www.uncommongood.org

Mission

Uncommon Good's mission is to break the inter-generational cycle of poverty. We accomplish this goal through innovative programs in education, health, and urban farming. We accomplish our goals by helping underprivileged children succeed in school, by supporting doctors who are bringing wellness into underserved communities, and through an urban farming hunger relief program.

Ruling year info

2000

Executive Director

Nancy Mintie

Main address

211 W. Foothill Blvd.

Claremont, CA 91711 USA

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EIN

95-4792792

NTEE code info

Human Service Organizations (P20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Creating communities in which all have access to quality education, medical care, nutritious food and housing in a healthy and sustainable environment.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

CCC is a college access and success program with a real world learning component. The program targets the lowest income children and youth and their families. 100% of CCC students go to college, even as 41.5% of their socio-economic peers are dropping out of high school. 90% of CCC students complete college, even though the program does not “cherry pick” only the most successful students but is open to all. CCC’s central feature is one-to-one mentoring which has been shown to be the single most powerful intervention that can be done in the life of an at-risk child. Mentoring harnesses the transformational power of relationship to enable children and youth to believe in themselves, imagine a successful future and to learn the steps necessary to attain that future, including a college education. The mentoring is supplemented with one-to-one tutoring, extensive educational enrichment programming (including computer classes, science camps, music lessons, reading and writing workshops, summer school, lessons in the arts, cultural experiences, college preparation and intensive college application assistance), leadership training, community service and civics education. Families, particularly the parents, also are included in the program with parent leadership training, a wide array of parent education, health and wellness programming, and many family activities designed to create a “culture of college.” The CAUSA part of the CCC name stands for Community Alliance for Urban Sustainable Agriculture. CAUSA was created by Uncommon Good and the families it serves in response to the Great Recession of 2008. Through CAUSA, Uncommon Good parents are hired to organically farm land at schools, places of worship, nonprofits and private homes, and to glean unused fruit. Half of the food grown is given to CCC families for free so that they can have the healthy diet of fruits and vegetables that they otherwise could not afford. The other half is sold to the local community to create a partial income stream for the program. CCC parents and students are hired to market and sell the food, learning about how to operate a small business in the process. CCC students also maintain one of the farm plots and use it as an outdoor science classroom for peer education programming.

Population(s) Served
At-risk youth
Economically disadvantaged people

The Medicine for the Economically Disadvantaged (MED) program has two components. The first is an educational loan repayment assistance program for young doctors, dentists, pharmacists and optometrists who work full time serving the poor in nonprofit community clinics throughout Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties. College and medical school costs have risen so high that students are graduating in some cases with over $500,000 in debt. They could not afford to follow their dreams of working for the poor in the lowest paying jobs in the medical profession, those in the community clinics, without financial assistance. There are a few government loan repayment programs, but they are underfunded and burdened with red tape that leaves many young doctors and other health professionals with no way to participate. MED prioritizes applicants who demonstrate cultural and linguistic competency vis a vis the patient population with which they work, leadership in community medicine, and a long term commitment to serving the poor. The second component of MED is a health career pipeline for CCC students. Only 4% of doctors in this state are Latinx (the preferred term for the Latino population) and 3% are African-American, despite the large populations of these ethnicities in California. This is because there are enormous barriers standing in the way of low-income minority students and a medical degree. The MED pipeline includes medical profession introductory workshops, medical mentoring, field trips to medical schools and community clinics, medical internships, contact with working doctors and other health care professionals, academic guidance for pre-med majors, assistance with preparing for the Medical College Admissions Test, and help with medical, dental, pharmacy and optometry school applications. The goal is to help CCC students, 99% of whom are students of color, to achieve their dreams of becoming health professionals.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
At-risk youth

The Whole Earth Building (or WEB, as in “web of life”) is a first-of-its-kind-in-the-world green building that is Uncommon Good’s office. It was the idea of a girl in Uncommon Good’s Teen Green group, a youth environmental leadership and community service club. For the first 13 years of its existence Uncommon Good had operated out of part of an old convent building at Our Lady of the Assumption Church in Claremont, since the space was free. But after it outgrew that space, it was looking for new quarters. One of its students had learned about an architect in the California desert who was promoting the idea of building using little more than the earth under one’s feet. She asked if Uncommon Good could do such a project, and the organization was excited by the idea. The students helped to promote the concept in the city and to overcome official reluctance and public skepticism to allow something so unusual and untested. After obtaining permission, the students, parents, and hundreds of community volunteers built the WEB by hand, using on-site earth, on land owned by the Claremont United Methodist Church. It also was the ancestral land of the local Native American tribe, the Tongva, which also gave its permission for the project and participated in its construction. The building is beautiful, comfortable, radically environmentally friendly, and capable of withstanding natural disasters such as earthquakes, fire, tornadoes, hurricanes and floods. It has been visited by people from every continent (except Antarctica) who come to learn how to construct such wonderful buildings in their own communities. Building WEB by hand in Los Angeles County, which has the strictest building codes in the world, demonstrated how any community with willing hands, could construct safe housing for themselves using little more than earth.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Homeless people

Where we work

Awards

Harvey Mudd's Community Partner of the Year 2017

Community Partners

City of Claremont Honored Community Organization 2018

Community Organization of the Year

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

% of CCC mentored students who achieve and maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

At-risk youth

Related Program

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

% of CCC graduates who have been tracked.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

At-risk youth

Related Program

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

% of tracked students who have graduated from college or are on track to do so.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

At-risk youth

Related Program

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Total pounds of target crop harvested

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

# of minors served by MED doctors annually.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Medicine for the Economically Disadvantaged (MED)

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

# of adults served by MED doctors annually.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Medicine for the Economically Disadvantaged (MED)

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

% of mentored students who graduate from the program and are accepted into college.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

At-risk youth

Related Program

Connect to College/CAUSA (CCC)

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

1. All students participating in CCC go to college.
2. 95% of students participating in CCC complete college.
3. All medical providers receiving loan repayment assistance from MED remain in jobs serving poor communities.
4. All CCC students have the opportunity to learn about and to pursue careers in health.
5. All families participating in CCC have access to a healthy diet, mental health support, and educational enrichment programming.
6. The Whole Earth Building will educate people worldwide about affordable, safe, environmentally friendly building methods.

1. Provide one-to-one mentoring, one-to-one tutoring, extensive educational enrichment, leadership training, community service opportunities, civics education, environmental education, college preparation and college application assistance to CCC students.
2. Provide leadership training, extensive educational opportunities, mental health support, and educational family activities for CCC families.
3. Provide educational loan repayment assistance to health providers employed in community clinics that serve poor populations.
4. Operate a health career pipeline for CCC students.
5. Operate an urban farming enterprise that provides healthy food to CCC families.
6. Conduct tours of the Whole Earth Building for visitors from around the world.

1. Uncommon Good has over two decades of experience meeting its goals successfully.
2. Uncommon Good is operated by a professional staff with over a century of combined experience in directing and staffing nonprofit efforts for the poor. Ten of the 12 staff members are Latinx individuals who speak Spanish and have broken the cycle of poverty through their own educational achievements and/or have helped their children lay a path out of poverty through education. Uncommon Good's parent leadership ensures that programming is effective and relevant.
3. Uncommon Good has a Board of Directors composed of leaders in education, nonprofit management, health, and business that actively is involved in the organization's governance and fundraising. The board is ethnically, gender, and age diverse.

1. 100% of Uncommon Good's CCC students attend college.
2. 90% of CCC students complete college.
3. All MED providers remain in their jobs providing medical services to poor communities.
4. CCC students are successfully pursuing careers and college majors in the health professions.
5. All CCC families have access to organically grown fruits and vegetables for free through the CAUSA program.
6. Visitors continue to come to WEB from around the world to learn about how to build safe and environmentally sound homes and other buildings, even in poor communities.

We have launched two pilot projects that aid our mission progress:
1. A one-of-its-kind mental health pilot project: training mental health promotoras to use low-intensity cognitive behavior therapy and thus provide crucial linguistic and culturally appropriate mental health support to low-income families.
2. A dyslexia pilot project: providing comprehensive support to low-income dyslexic students. Efforts include professional development for teachers and administrators, advocacy, parent and student education, structured literacy tutoring, and vocabulary/comprehension tutoring.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Community meetings/Town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees, Suggestion box/email, student cohort meetings and parent meetings,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    Through parent monthly meetings, one-to-one meetings, and parent leadership feedback, we learned of a growing need for mental health services. Poverty and racism are persistent hurdles for our families, and now, during the pandemic, we have seen the stressors and crises grow enormously. Yet, mental health resources remain elusive for our Spanish-speaking, low-income families. As a result, Uncommon Good has launched a mental health pilot project that is a one-of-its-kind effort to train community promotoras in low-intensity cognitive behavior therapy; this work will bring culturally and linguistically appropriate mental health care to our families and the community at large.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

UNCOMMON GOOD
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

UNCOMMON GOOD

Board of directors
as of 2/17/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Alison Anderson

UCLA Law School, retired

Term: 2000 -


Board co-chair

Ben Hunsaker

Beach Point Capital Management, LP

Term: 2007 -

Alison Anderson

UCLA School of Law (retired)

Charles Bayer

Chicago Urban Corp (retired)

Michael Fay

Claremont Financial Group (retired)

Norma Grannis

Isla del Cerrito Micro Credit Project

Benjamin Hunsaker

Beach Point Capital Management LP

Marsha Moutrie

Santa Monica City Attorney (retired)

Deborah Sirias

Lewis Brisbois

Victor De la Cruz

Manatt Phelps & Phillips

Janet Evans

Person to Person (retired)

Margaret Levy

ADR Services

Jo Marie Reilly, M.D.

USC Keck School of Medicine

Alejandra Velazquez

Oportun

Christine Hayes

Rosemont Mortgage and Melrose Escrow, Inc.

Crystal Silva

Wells Fargo & Company

Jesus Gomez, M.D.

Kaiser Permanente

Walter Johnson, M.D., MBA, MPH, FACS, FAANS

World Health Organization, United Nations (retired)

Paul Rohrer

Loeb & Loeb

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 02/03/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Person with a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 02/02/2021

Policies and practices developed in partnership with Equity in the Center, a project that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems within the social sector to increase racial equity. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.