More than three months ago, Meyer (along with 11 of our regional funder colleagues), pledged to make building the power of Black, Indigenous, Latinx and other people of color the cornerstone of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
To make this moral commitment a reality, earlier this summer Meyer awarded $1.18 million in general operating grants to 28 grantee partners whose work strongly aligns with our goal to change systems by building movements to advance racial equity and justice.
When we made that pledge in April, we already knew that a long list of systemic failures were resulting in our Black and Latinx neighbors being much more likely than our white neighbors to become infected with and die from COVID-19. Since then, the death and economic devastation wrought by the pandemic have disproportionately affected communities of color. The inequities of the systems we all typically rely on to carry us through a crisis — from public health to paid leave to the social safety net — have been exposed and their failures are now glaringly visible.
In selecting grantee partners for this support, we are making our largest grants to people of color-led organizations whose primary strategy is building power through organizing. We are also supporting policy advocates (in particular, coalitions and the anchor organizations that convene them) that are addressing inequities and systems failures that have been further exposed by COVID-19. Beyond weathering tough times, our goal in making these general operating support grants is to ensure that these organizations are able to emerge from the immediate crisis stronger and better positioned to carry out the work and lead our region toward a vision of a new future.
Everything we’ve seen and experienced since the start of the pandemic — more than 150,000 deaths from COVID-19, more than 30 million people unemployed (both disproportionately impacting Black, Latinx, and other communities of color), and widespread protests for racial justice and the Black Lives Matter movement following the murders of Ahmaud Arbury, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and too many others — has only reinforced our pre-pandemic commitment to changing systems.
Whether they are pushing to include undocumented immigrants in government-sponsored relief programs, protect renters as eviction moratoriums are lifted around the region, or ensure a racially equitable budget and rebuild, what unites these 28 organizations is their deep commitment to reimagining systems and investing the time, energy, and resources to build those systems. We stand in solidarity with these organizations as they work to build movements for racial justice that will transform systems that will help all to thrive.
|Organization||Amount||Grant Purpose||Geographic Area|
|Advocates for Justice and Education||$40,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Bread for the City||$50,000||to support advocacy and organizing work||District of Columbia|
|CASA||$50,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|Centreville Immigration Forum||$40,000||to support general operations||Virginia|
|Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development||$10,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis||$30,000||to support general operations||Virginia|
|DC Jobs With Justice||$40,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Defending Rights and Dissent||$30,000||to support general operations of the Justice for Muslims Collective||Washington Metropolitan Area|
|Empower DC||$50,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|First Shift Justice Project||$40,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Identity||$50,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|IMPACT Silver Spring||$50,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|Latino Economic Development Center||$50,000||to support general operations||Washington Metropolitan Area|
|Legal Aid Justice Center||$30,000||to support general operations||Virginia|
|Many Languages One Voice||$50,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Maryland Consumer Rights Coalition||$30,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|National Korean American Service and Education Consortium||$40,000||to support general operations in Northern Virginia||Virginia|
|New Virginia Majority Education Fund||$50,000||to support general operations||Virginia|
|Nonprofit Montgomery||$30,000||to support COVID-19 related nonprofit advocacy and organizing||Maryland|
|ONE DC||$50,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Prince George's Leadership Action Network||$80,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|Progressive Maryland Education Fund||$40,000||to support general operations||Maryland|
|Restaurant Opportunities Centers United||$40,000||to support general operations of ROC-DC||District of Columbia|
|Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs||$50,000||to support general operations of Racial Justice NOW!||Maryland|
|Social Good Fund||$50,000||to support the Fair Budget Coalition||District of Columbia|
|Tenants and Workers United||$40,000||to support general operations||Virginia|
|Trabajadores Unidos de Washington DC||$40,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|
|Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless||$30,000||to support general operations||District of Columbia|