December 18, 2019

We are excited to announce that The Women’s Fund of the Capital Region is merging with the Capital District Women’s Employment & Resource Center (WERC), effective January 1, 2020.

This partnership will allow The Women’s Fund name and activities – including giving scholarships and emergency funds, and the Trailblazers Awards Luncheon – to not just continue, but to grow. We’re thrilled at the possibilities this merger will mean for expanding The Women’s Fund’s impact.

You’ll hear more about this new partnership over the coming months, but please see below for answers to some common questions about the merger. If you have any other questions, please contact Co-Chairs Paula Marshman (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Tricia Tauss (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) .
And as always, thank you for helping Invest in her Future –
FAQs about the merger
1.      How does the Capital District Women’s Employment & Resource Center (WERC) support women?
WERC ( advances women’s success in the workplace by building their economic and personal independence through career readiness and job training, job search and placement assistance and ongoing supportive services until they find employment. Since 1988, WERC has provided quality workforce development services to more than 8,000 “displaced homemakers,” women who have lost their source of income due to the death, divorce, separation, disability or dislocation of a spouse. WERC also serves single mothers. Each year more than 300 program participants receive more than 2,700 free services.
WERC has six staff, and has been led by Executive Director Elizabeth Miller Guthier – a 2017 Trailblazer – for more than 15 years.
2.      Why are the organizations merging? 
The leadership of The Women’s Fund ( initially approached WERC leaders in summer 2018, as we were seeking options that would allow the fund to grow and remain sustainable for years to come. Leaders of both organizations quickly saw the mutual benefit, and, most importantly, the advantage for the women served by both organizations, if we merged. Specifically:
o  The women served by each organization will benefit from additional support — WERC women will be able to apply for scholarships and Women’s Fund scholarship recipients will be able to access WERC job-seeking resources.
o  Working together will create efficiencies that enable a larger impact, increasing not only the number of women served, but the number of women entering the workforce AND the educational system. This will positively impact more lives and benefit the entire community.
o  Together WERC will have stronger leadership, by adding Women’s Fund Steering Committee members to the WERC board.
o  Partnering will ensure long-term sustainability and growth of The Women’s Fund, a critical support for women in our region.
3.      What will the merged organization be called?  
The organization name will remain WERC. The Women's Fund will transition into a program of WERC, retaining its identity and activities.
4.      Will WERC and The Women’s Fund’s previous activities continue?
Yes. WERC will continue its more than 30-year focus on workforce development and job seeking skills, and The Women’s Fund will continue its focus on scholarships and emergency funds. Previous events held by WERC and The Women’s Fund will continue.
5.      What does this mean for me, as a volunteer/sponsor/donor?
For volunteers, this means more ways to get involved to help women of the Capital Region, as volunteers are sought for various committees of WERC (including Marketing, Employer Outreach and Grants), as well as The Women’s Fund Program Committee, which will lead the Trailblazers Award Luncheon planning, help with scholarship administration and more.
For sponsors and donors, this merger means support of The Women’s Fund will benefit women in a new way, through WERC’s workforce development and job seeking training. Recognition of support will also reach a larger audience of volunteers and event attendees.