THE PHILANTHROPIC IMPERATIVE
Across the country, many communities are confronting increasing violence, hate crimes, and anticipating the rollback of decades of hard-fought progress towards racial equity, immigrant rights, women’s rights, and environmental and climate justice. Community-based organizations are mobilizing to defend residents and families, build resiliency, and develop new strategies and alliances to defend and advance justice and sustainability in a rapidly changing political landscape. Grassroots organizations are the front line of support for the rights of vulnerable communities, including, but not limited to immigrant, Black, Arab and Muslim, Native-American, women, working-class, and LGBTQ communities. In addition to being directly targeted, many of these communities also stand to lose the most if rollbacks of environmental and climate policies are carried out. There is a critical need to mobilize responsive funding to support a diverse range of emerging community priorities and infrastructure needs, both to fend off opposition attacks in the short term, and to develop a long-term agenda to advance progressive community-led change.
INTRODUCING: STILL WE RISE
A group of allied funders are stepping up to help meet some of the growing needs that grassroots social, racial, economic, and environmental justice organizations are articulating during these challenging times through a combination of both aligned and pooled funding. The Still We Rise Fund is designed to be a nimble pooled fund that is facilitating, scaling and accelerating the delivery of responsive funding to a diverse range of community-based organizations across the country. While the fund will work to adapt to emergent community and movement needs – on a range of issues – core priority areas will include:
- Building and Strengthening Community Defense Infrastructure
- Expanding Outreach, Training and Leadership Development
- Strengthening Grassroots Networks and Alliances
- Supporting Mass Mobilizations
- Convening Community Organizations and Developing Responsive Strategies
This is a critical time to listen to the needs, priorities and strategies of groups on the ground in communities that are being targeted, and the analysis and perspectives of grassroots leaders will inform the grantmaking process and priorities for the Still We Rise Fund. The fund will respond quickly to urgent requests, while also minimizing application and reporting requirements.
The Still We Rise Fund is housed at Common Counsel Foundation, which has a track record of rapid response grantmaking, and is being coordinated in partnership with the Bay Area Justice Funders Network, and a broader circle of allied philanthropies.
HOW TO SUPPORT THE FUND
We are encouraging contributing funders to move quickly and to do everything in their power to minimize restrictions, application and reporting requirements in order to enable the fund to be as adaptive and nimble as possible.
Funders who are interested in contributing to the Still We Rise Fund should contact Alex Saingchin: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Individual donors can support the fund by sending a check or by making your donation online. (Please be sure to designate the Still We Rise Fund)