The national movement for racial justice has dramatically increased the demand for racial equity practitioners as organizations, staff, and communities reckon with the legacy and ongoing effects of racial injustice and white supremacy in this country. The Racial Equity to Accelerate Change (REACH) Fund grantees have been meeting the moment by providing the necessary tools and strategies to support long-term change in the nonprofit sector.
In addition to increased demand, practitioners are seeing new opportunities to deepen and strengthen their work with organizations ready to upend oppressive systems. “The uprising for racial justice has unleashed the imagination, creative thinking, and the sense of what is possible,” shared REACH Fund grantees Maggie Potapchuk and Gita Gulati-Partee of MP Associates and OpenSource Leadership Strategies, respectively. “ This has shifted our work in significant ways. Instead of focusing only on how to incrementally shift white dominant culture, radically new (and old) ways of being and doing are presenting themselves as possible and desirable.”
Amidst this growth in need and the demands on racial equity practitioners, REACH Fund grants are helping practitioners create space for peer learning and capacity building. “Among our most critical tools for upending white supremacy and anti-Blackness in the nonprofit sector is ensuring that our racial equity practitioners continue to be supported, to be compensated, to have the space to be with peers and dig in deeply with both what the barriers to this work are, and to dream up the world we know is possible once we overcome them,” said REACH Fund Program Officer Ain Bailey. “Burnout is real. Organizations asking for change when what they really want is window dressing is real. The experience of trauma or harm that practitioners face in doing this work is real. We can’t ignore these factors, and our grants have to be responsive to the complex realities racial equity practitioners have to face in doing this work.”
REACH invests in racial equity practitioners to support nonprofit organizations with learning and strategy to integrate racial equity into their institutional policies, practices, culture, services, and programs. The REACH Fund directly resources practitioners to provide racial equity consultative services to nonprofit organizations. The Fund also supports learning among practitioners, helping to lift up promising practices, case studies, strategies, frameworks, and tools that facilitate nonprofits’ capacity to have a greater impact on addressing racial inequities, within their organizations and externally in program and service delivery.
The 19 REACH Fund grantees leading this incredible work are:
The REACH Fund welcomes the support of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, which announced in May a $1 million gift to the REACH Fund as part of their 5-year $500 million commitment to supporting organizations building systems to advance racial equity. REACH was also awarded a grant from MacKenzie Scott as part of her $2.74 billion investment in 286 organizations supporting grassroots change.
To learn more about the REACH Fund and how to support its work, please contact the Racial Equity Initiatives team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The REACH Fund currently includes support from the Barr Foundation, the Bush Foundation, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund, Fidelity Charitable, the Grove Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation, the Meyer Memorial Trust, the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.