Stepping up in Solidarity

Election night was hard for many of us who have dedicated our life’s energy to expanding freedom, opportunity and inclusion for all people.

To Our Colleagues in Philanthropy:

Election night was hard for many of us who have dedicated our life’s energy to expanding freedom, opportunity and inclusion for all people, and who have advocated for the recognition of the inherent rights, worth and dignity of all. The results exposed deep rifts in our society, validating racism, sexism and xenophobia and fostering those belief systems. The singer John Boutté poignantly opined during the New Orleans French Quarter Festival that we are not born despising others, but that hatred is taught from one generation to the next.

While times like these, when fear and uncertainty are on the rise, may evoke a desire to turn inward or run, what is truly required of us is to do more -- to find a way, where there seems to be no way. It is up to each one of us who believes in social justice to stand in solidarity to protect immigrant, black, Native, Muslims, LGBTQ, and low-income lives. It is up to each one of us who loves this planet to protect it.  We all have a role to play in turning this tide. It isn’t going to be easy, but it is essential. And we in philanthropy have an even greater obligation to this charge.

We know that many communities have less formal political and economic power – and are particularly vulnerable to the uncertainty to come. Those of us who work in the philanthropic sector, therefore, must endeavor to ensure that these communities have the resources that they need to build collective power, in order to advance a transformative movement for freedom and democracy. Philanthropy can do this by giving more to support grassroots organizing groups that are:

These are the voices from communities with the most to lose in the coming days. It is incumbent upon us to use our resources to create space for and amplify their voice – and listen deeply – to find ways to respond to the needs and solutions they express. They know what they need to be stronger and more resilient – to ultimately advance a society based on progressive values and an inclusive worldview.

Stepping up in solidarity,
The CCF Team,
Laura Livoti, CEO, Luke Newton, Senior Program Officer, Alex Saingchin, Program Officer, Allistair Mallillin, Program Officer, and  Layla Cooper, Finance and Operations Manager