When I joined Grantmakers for Girls of Color as its first Executive Director this April, I could not have imagined the challenges with which our communities would be faced. In the midst of a global pandemic, a reckoning about our country’s legacy of racial injustice, economic distress, and increased violence, we moved swiftly and boldly to meet the needs of girls and gender-expansive youth of color and their families, while holding fast to our values. Our mission–to resource and amplify transformative organizing work to dismantle systems of oppression in the United States led by girls, femme(s) and gender expansive youth of color– demands we continue to build with vision, grace, and urgency.
During this year, we:
Built our internal capacity to ensure we have the infrastructure to support work with girls and movement leaders. This spring we established our leadership, announcing our incredible advisory community and hiring Maheen Kaleem, Esq. as our Deputy Director, Cidra M. Sebastien as our manager of the Black Girl Freedom Fund, Kyndall Clark Osibodu as our manager of G4GC Organizational Health and Learning, and Dominique Fulling as our Executive Assistant. Read more about all of these remarkable women on our website.
Awarded close to $3 million in grants to more than 100 organizations across 28 states and the District of Columbia though our Love Is Healing COVID-19 Response Fund. All of our grantee partners impress and inspire us with their ongoing creativity and care providing relief and healing during this pandemic. If you are in a position to make end-of-year donations, we encourage you to give directly and generously to these important organizations.
Launched the Black Girl Freedom Fund, an unprecedented campaign with an incredible community of co-founders, calling for a $1 billion investment in Black girls in the U.S. over the next ten years. Even in the face of the insurmountable odds Black girls and young women face in America, they continue to lead the way forward. Imagine what 2030 could look if we invest in Black girls and young women in all the ways they deserve. Click here if you’d like to donate to this campaign.
Expanded our community of co-investors, with significant pledges from GRAMMY Award-winning artist Ciara, philanthropist MacKenzie Scott, and many more foundations, businesses and individuals stepping up to invest in the leadership of Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific, and other girls and gender expansive youth of color.
Held important conversations, including a live talk with Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw on why philanthropy must use an intersectional approach to meet this moment of national reckoning around anti-Black racism and other forms of injustice; a webinar on how COVID-19 is impacting girls, fem(mes), and gender expansive youth of color with partners National Crittenton, S.O.U.L. Sisters Leadership Collective, and National Compadres Network; and a webinar on protecting our communities against COVID-19 with Dr. Lane Rolling.
In 2021, we will continue to expand our reach with the Love Is Healing COVID-19 Response Fund to provide organizations in even more communities with critical support during this ongoing pandemic. We will also be launching exciting new partnerships and funding opportunities for organizations led by and serving Black, Indigenous, and other girls and young femmes of color.
G4GC has spent the last five years listening to Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, Pacific, and other girls and femmes of color, as well as adult allies and advocates tell us what it means to build a philanthropic practice that centers girls of color’s stories, strategies, and visions for liberatory, feminist futures. We are so excited to build on this work by creating opportunities for youth leaders to shape and design our strategy, grantmaking, and programming.
Finally, we will make some exciting new announcements in 2021, including introducing new team members, announcing important partnerships, and launching more bold initiatives. Follow our social media and subscribe to our newsletter for information on new funding opportunities, job openings, and updates!
We know that girls and gender-expansive youth of color are sacred, and that their leadership will bring our collective liberation. We are committed to creating a philanthropic home that follows their leadership to meet this shared vision.
As I reflect on this past year and look forward to the year ahead, I am filled with hope and excitement about what’s possible. We feel deeply honored to work alongside you to build a world where girls and gender expansive youth of color are resourced in all the ways that support their purpose. Thank you for being in our community and helping us realize the vision!
Monique W. Morris, Ed.D.
Grantmakers for Girls of Color