Black Girl Freedom Fund
Black girls and young women have been on the frontlines of fighting for racial and gender equity, but their stories and lives are often overlooked or erased.
According to the Ms. Foundation for Women landmark study on philanthropy, women and girls of color account for 0.5% of $66.9 billion given by foundations, totaling just $5.48 per woman and girls of color in the United States. In 2017, one of the latest years for which comprehensive data is available, less than $15 million was specified as benefiting Black women and girls.
We believe investing in Black girls and young women is necessary, urgent, and just — for our collective freedom and to ensure that all Black lives are viewed as valuable, today and tomorrow. That is why we launched the Black Girl Freedom Fund (BGFF) in September 2020, our largest initiative to date.
BGFF is part of the #1Billion4BlackGirls campaign, a 10-year philanthropic initiative designed to invest one billion dollars in the brain trust, innovation, health, safety, education, artistic visions, research, and joy of Black girls and their families. Other groups participating in this campaign include the Ms. Foundation for Women and Black Girls Dream Fund from the Southern Black Girls and Women’s Consortium.
The co-founders of the BGFF are all Black women and Femme activists, artists, educators, organizers, and philanthropists: Dr. Monique Couvson (Grantmakers for Girls of Color); LaTosha Brown (Southern Black Girls and Women’s Consortium); Tarana Burke (‘me too.’ Movement); Fatima Goss Graves (National Women’s Law Center); Joanne N. Smith (Girls for Gender Equity); Salamishah Tillet (A Long Walk Home); Scheherezade Tillet (A Long Walk Home); and Teresa C. Younger (Ms. Foundation for Women). Read their open letter published in Essence here.
Funding decisions by BGFF are made via a participatory grantmaking process where Black girls are paid for their time and their wisdom, and given the power to make final decisions on the organizations to receive funding through the fund.
G4GC’s Black Girl Freedom Fund (BGFF) is thrilled to announce our second round of grantee partners! Our newest grantee partners across the U.S. and territories were selected with a focus on organizations that nurture the leadership and organizing capacity of Black girls, femmes and gender-expansive youth. They were chosen by six Black girls from BGFF’s Grantmaking Council, ages 14 to 22.
This year we invested over $4 million in our 68 grantee partners, funds that will directly nurture the dreams, power, and leadership of Black girls, femmes and gender-expansive youth.
Learn more about these 68 incredible organizations, and how their work positively impacts our communities and the lives of Black girls.
In our first round of grantmaking, we distributed grants ranging between $50,000-$100,000 and focused on organizations serving the wellness and safety of Black girls, femmes and gender-expansive youth:
- The F.I.N.D. Design (Nashville)
- Pretty Brown Girl (National)
- Healing the Black Body (National)
- Get Smart B4U Get Sexy (California)
- The Hive Community Circle (South Carolina)
- 3D Girls, Inc. (Atlanta).
A celebration of black girl magic
Black Girl Freedom Week
Black Girl Freedom Week (BGFW) is an annual week-long celebration of Black girls, femmes, and gender-expansive youth and what is possible when we invest abundantly in their dreams, their power, and their leadership, and work together to co-create a future where they are safe, free, and thriving. We chose this week during Black History Month in honor of Toni Morrison’s and Audre Lorde’s birthdays.
Hosted by Black Girl Freedom Fund, the first Black Freedom Week was held in 2021. After its success, the week-long celebration was held in 2022 and returns for a third year on February 13-19, 2023
You can rewatch all the inspirational, beautiful conversations here and check out a quick recap of the panel discussions, youth-led interactive conversation, and solidarity actions below.
HOW TO GET INVOLVED AND LEARN MORE
Photo Credit: 3D Girls Inc