Saba Brelvi,
Program Director

aba Brelvi joined the staff of TCWF in February as a program director. She oversees the Foundation’s grantmaking in the issues of diversity in the health professions and women’s health.

In her position, she reviews and evaluates letters of interest and grant proposals; prepares funding recommendations for approval by the Foundation’s Board of Directors; serves as liaison between TCWF and Grantees, grantseekers and other foundations; and monitors grant progress.

“Doing site visits is one of the best parts of my job,” Brelvi said. “It’s a privilege to witness the great work being done around the state to improve community health.”

Brelvi’s family is from India. She was born in the United States but was raised mostly in the Middle East. She holds a bachelor’s degree in community health from Brown University and a master’s degree in public health from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Her commitment to social justice and equality was instilled at an early age.

“I’m Muslim and was raised with the understanding that Islam has a strong dimension of social justice,” Brelvi said. “My family in India was deeply involved in the Indian independence movement, which is obviously connected to human rights and social justice.

“The components of public health that I find most interesting and compelling, and why I like working in the field, are really about working to ensure that everyone, regardless of who they are and where they’re from, has equal access to high-quality health care, to good food, to clean air – essentially, working to see that everyone has an equal chance to be healthy, which we all know isn’t currently the case.”

After completing graduate school, Brelvi worked as a research and program associate with Grantmakers In Health, a foundation affinity group that represents TCWF and other health foundations. She became familiar with TCWF through that position. Most recently, she was director of health services for Huckleberry Youth Programs in San Francisco.

“Before I started at the Foundation, I was working at a community-based clinic,” Brelvi said. “I know firsthand how important core operating support grants can be to cover everyday costs – the administrative assistant’s salary, the increase in rent – because many other funders won’t cover those kinds of expenses. It’s really satisfying to be able to tell grantseekers that they don’t have to develop new programs to qualify for funding – that TCWF recognizes and values what they’re already doing.”

“Doing site visits is one of the best parts of my job. It’s a privilege to witness the great work being done around the state to improve community health.”

Brelvi works in the Foundation’s San Francisco office. She lives in the Inner Richmond neighborhood, near Golden Gate Park.

“I spend my free time trying to be the world’s greatest aunt to my new nephew, reading cookbooks and watching the Food Network,” she said.

Summer 2004

Support helps Saftey net Providers

Environmental advocacy in the Central Valley

Mental health services for Asian immigrants and refugees

Staff Profile

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