The Emerging LGBTQ Leaders of Color Fund (ELLC Fund)*  supports young trans and queer leaders of color and the organizations they lead to build inclusive and impactful social justice movements. The ELLC Fund invests in leaders who understand that issues of injustice do not exist in isolation from one another, and thus work to address the intersections of harm and inequity by building community power. Young queer, trans, and gender-nonconforming leaders of color are at the cutting edge of visionary organizing that wins victories for ALL communities, leaving no one behind.

In order to support young queer and trans leaders of color, the ELLC Fund provides two primary types of support: 1) general operating support grants, and 2) young trans women of color leadership grants.

The Emerging LGBTQ Leaders of Color Fund’s Young Trans Women of Color (YTWOC) grantmaking program invests in trans leaders who are organizing across movements and issues. We know that the leadership of trans women of color’s has been under-resourced, yet is essential in order to build connected, inclusive, and powerful movements. The ELLC Fund thus provides YTWOC grantees with multi-year leadership development support, a contribution towards their total salary, and additional resources for peer learning.

*Formerly the Transforming Movements Fund


The ELLC Fund offers grantee partners:

  • Layered grants to create a scaffolding of support for organizations and young leaders.
  • Consistent, ongoing support to create stability through funding and coaching.
  • Self-directed use of funding to address unique individual and organizational needs, which mitigates burnout and promotes grantees’ sustainability in the movement.
  • Flexible funding to respond to emerging needs that allows grantees to be nimble.

The ELLC Fund was Borealis’ first fund. It was launched in 2015 and has moved more than $12.2 million to 116 organizations supporting queer and trans leaders!

The ELLC Fund prioritizes funding for:

  • Queer and trans leaders of color (under 40) and their organizing homes.
  • Organizations with a strong track record of and/or innovative approach to organizing across LGBTQ liberation, racial justice, and gender justice movements.
  • Trans women of color under 40 who are leading innovative social justice work with an emphasis on cross-sector organizing for justice.


Current Funding Opportunities

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Donor Benefits

Borealis Philanthropy builds bridges between funders and organizers to resource grassroots movements that are rooted in liberation and justice for all people. By partnering with Borealis, philanthropy can maximize its collective impact; fund bold, leading-edge work; and learn in community with allied funders, expert staff, and grantee partners.

As a donor collaborative, the ELLC Fund offers funders:

  • Opportunities to invest in leaders and organizing at the visionary forefront of social movements.
  • A vehicle to maximize the impact of smaller grants in alignment with social justice movements.
  • Insights directly from groups on the ground about how young, queer, and trans leadership of color impacts organizing strategies.
  • Deep knowledge about LGBTQ issues, racial justice, gender justice, reproductive justice, criminalization, youth organizing, and more.
  • Relationships and knowledge exchange with allied funders who focus on a broad range of funding areas.
  • Access to resources to develop more inclusive grantmaking practices and enhance their own impact and grantmaking.


For more information about the Emerging LGBTQ Leaders of Color Fund, email ellc@borealisphilanthropy.org.