As we announced in early June, we are donating to a number of Black-led community organizations, in support of the communities of color in the cities in which we operate, namely Baltimore, MD and Washington, DC. We put out a call for submissions and received over 35 nominations; in the end, our review panel selected thirteen organizations to fund at $1,000 each.
The initial funding pool we established was $8,460 in memory of George Floyd, who died after his neck was knelt on by a police officer for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. We have expanded the funding pool to $13,000, both through additional funds from SmartLogic and through a contribution of $3,000 from Nick Chester, Principal at BayTech Group. The following is a list of the thirteen organizations our panel selected to fund at $1,000 each, along with a short description of the mission and work of each organization.
We very much appreciate all the submissions contributed by organizers and community members. We also hope to see more members of the tech community and beyond stepping up to financially support Black-led community organizations whose voices and work are critical in supporting Black communities and building a more just and equitable society free from the violence and oppression of systemic racism.
Baltimore Action Legal Team (BALT) provides legal support to Baltimore communities as they exercise their civil liberties protesting against injustices rooted in structural racism and economic inequality. BALT exercises a community lawyering approach because we believe that communities' organizing efforts should drive legal advocacy. We support and advance mass defense employing a human rights and racial equity framework.
We provide opportunities for a higher quality of life for transgender people in Baltimore City living in survival mode. Baltimore Safe Haven is an organization focused on providing outreach, drop-in and housing services for Baltimore's most vulnerable LGBTQ community members.
Black Girl Ventures is an ecosystem of Black/Brown women creating access to social and financial capital together. Black Girl Ventures addresses the unique challenges Black and Brown women face in accessing social and financial capital to grow their businesses. We fund and scale tech-enabled, revenue-generating businesses (under $1M) founded by people who identify as Black/Brown and woman. Our signature pitch program provides coaching, crowdfunding, and community for our founders.
Black Lives Matter DC is a radical collective of Black artists, infrastructure builders and movement healers and strategists from the future, organizing in the here and now around two movement equations. These equations inform how we live as our highest selves while dismantling White Supremacy, Patriarchy, Capitalism, Imperialism and the role the state plays in supporting them.
Building Our Nation’s Daughters (BOND) works to engage, mentor, and build single mothers in Baltimore to cultivate positive mother-daughter relationships, strengthen single-mother families, and lead advocacy efforts to ensure every single mother household has equitable access to opportunities. BOND provides support and opportunities for mothers with daughters in grades 6 -12 to build a strong mother-daughter relationship along with personal, educational, professional development, and cultural experiences to address a full spectrum of challenges faced by single mothers.
Campaign Zero is a police reform campaign supporting the analysis of policing practices across the country, research to identify effective solutions to end police violence, technical assistance to organizers leading police accountability campaigns, and the development of model legislation and advocacy to end police violence nationwide.
Fayette Street Outreach has been working in the black community in West Baltimore for the past 26 years, running after school programs, Code in The Schools programming, Senior Citizens Computer Classes, food give-aways, and a Podcast Internet Radio Station.
Since 2001, the Leon Day Foundation has been committed to creating opportunities for kids to engage in baseball in West Baltimore. Through signature programs such as the Leon Day Youth League, Sandlot Saturdays, Baseball Tuesdays, the Leon Day Classic, the Leon Day Festival, the Leon Day 10th Man Award, and most recently, sponsoring a youth league team in the James Mosher Baseball Youth League, the foundation strives to positively impact the lives of children and their families in the Rosemont/Franklintown community.
Muse 360 Arts is a non-profit organization that was founded in 2005 to provide the community with a gateway to global arts and culture by providing access to affordable, quality, learning experiences, and expanded resources. We use the arts to educate, build confidence, instill discipline, and drive cultural awareness while creating and empowering leaders in the Baltimore Community. Our Vision is to guide people in their pursuit of cultural arts and personal development to ultimately facilitate change in our community.
The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is America’s premier legal organization fighting for racial justice. Through litigation, advocacy, and public education, LDF seeks structural changes to expand democracy, eliminate disparities, and achieve racial justice in a society that fulfills the promise of equality for all Americans. LDF also defends the gains and protections won over the past 75 years of civil rights struggle and works to improve the quality and diversity of judicial and executive appointments.
The No Boundaries Coalition is a resident-led advocacy organization building a unified and empowered Central West Baltimore across the boundaries of race, class, and neighborhood. The No Boundaries Coalition has been a voice in West Baltimore for over 13 years and has worked on issues that include police misconduct, food insecurity, youth opportunities and voter education.
The mission of the ACE Project is to nurture children living in underserved communities by building character, confidence, and competency through the sport of tennis. We offer tennis-based after-school programs for students attending elementary schools in Chicago, IL, Baltimore, MD, and Detroit, MI as well as special opportunities in the summer for the school communities. Our goal is to ensure youth have access to programs and resources that help them grow and thrive.
YES Drop-In Center is a safe space for youth who are homeless and between the ages of 14-25, to get basic needs met and to establish supportive relationships with peer staff and allies and to make and sustain connections to long-term resources and opportunities. Founded and run by formerly homeless youth and their allies, YES works to end youth homelessness in Baltimore by (1) providing urgently-needed direct services to youth experiencing homelessness, (2) developing the leadership and employment readiness of youth who have experienced homelessness, and (3) engaging in system-level reform.