Open Arms Perinatal Services Receives $2 Million Gift From The Yield Giving Open Call

March 19, 2024 10:53 am Published by

MacKenzie Scott’s Philanthropic Project Awards One of the Largest Gifts in Open Arms’ 25-Year History


MEDIA CONTACT: Elena M. Teare,

SEATTLE, WA (March 19, 2024) – Today, MacKenzie Scott’s Yield Giving announced their Open Call awardees working with people and in places experiencing the greatest need in the United States. Open Arms Perinatal Services (Open Arms), Washington’s first community-based doula organization dedicated to serving economically marginalized families, was awarded $2 million in recognition of our work advancing health equity so that all birthing people and babies can receive the best possible start in life.

Our trained community healthcare workers support new parents with culturally responsive services through pregnancy, birth experience, and lactation. Open Arms services have been shown to significantly reduce preterm births and other life-threatening risk factors that especially impact People of Color and their infants. Open Arms’ providers also help nurture parenting skills and early relational health and provide tailored resources to help families meet their basic needs.

Dila Perera, Executive Director of Open Arms, commented, “We are so honored that the life-changing work of thousands of birth workers is being recognized in this way. Open Arms provides our services as a labor of love for thousands of families free of charge.  This gift not only helps us recover from the pandemic’s impact on our communities, but it also helps us write our next chapter, expanding our ability to assist even more families and advance our work towards birth justice and equity.” 

This gift is one of the largest since Open Arms’ founding in 1997. It will ensure that hundreds of families each year continue receiving community-based birth support and sustain our mission to create a world that cherishes Black, Indigenous, and birthing people of color and their babies. MacKenzie Scott’s generous gift and the overwhelmingly positive feedback from our peer evaluators validate our approach, outcomes, and the transformative power of culturally affirming perinatal care.

In March 2023, Yield Giving launched an Open Call for community-led, community-focused organizations whose explicit purpose is to enable individuals and families to achieve substantive improvement in their well-being through foundational resources.

The Open Call received 6,353 applications and initially planned for 250 awards of $1 million each. In the Fall of 2023, organizations top-rated by their peers advanced to a second round of review by an external Evaluation Panel recruited for experience relevant to this cause and underwent a final round of due diligence. Considering the incredible work of these organizations, as judged by their peers and external panelists, the donor team decided to expand the awardee pool and the award amount.

“We are excited that our partnership with Yield Giving has resonated with so many organizations,” said Cecilia Conrad, CEO of Lever for Change. “In a world teeming with potential and talent, the Open Call has given us an opportunity to identify, uplift, and empower transformative organizations that often remain unseen.”

More information on the Yield Giving Open Call and other initiatives can be found at


Open Arms Perinatal Services

Founded in 1997, Open Arms is the first independent, community-based program in Washington State to provide comprehensive perinatal services to over four thousand economically marginalized families. We are a predominantly BIPOC organization that provides free support during pregnancy, birth, and early childhood with birth and community-based outreach doula services, lactation counseling, and social service referrals to over 500 families annually throughout the Puget Sound region.

Yield Giving

Established by MacKenzie Scott to share a financial fortune created through the effort of countless people, Yield Giving is named after a belief in adding value by giving up control. To date, Yield’s network of staff and advisors has yielded over $16,500,000,000 to 1,900+ non-profit teams to use as they see fit for the benefit of others. To learn more, visit

Lever for Change

Lever for Change connects donors with bold solutions to the world’s biggest problems—including issues like racial inequity, gender inequality, lack of access to economic opportunity, and climate change. Using an inclusive, equitable model and due diligence process, Lever for Change creates customized challenges and other tailored funding opportunities. Top-ranked teams and challenge finalists become members of the Bold Solutions Network—a growing global network that helps secure additional funding, amplify members’ impact, and accelerate social change. Founded in 2019 as a nonprofit affiliate of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Lever for Change has influenced over $1.7 billion in grants to date and provided support to more than 145 organizations. To learn more, visit