Racial Equity Fund Provides Grants to Fight Racism
Strengthening our County through Racial Equality
The Community Foundation of Lorain County has created a Racial Equity Fund to strengthen relationships between marginalized communities with law enforcement to improve policing policies and procedures, and to build community organizations’ capacity to bring about impactful, measurable improvements in racial equity.
The Community Foundation’s Board of Directors allocated $25K to the fund to support Lorain County non-profits working to achieve racial equity. “As Community Engagement Chair, I was delighted to see the breadth of significant applications representing the critical work in racial equity taking place right here in our community,” says A.G. Miller, Chair of the Community Engagement Committee at the Community Foundation.
“We are hoping others see the critical importance of this work and will consider joining us through contributions to the Racial Equity Fund.” In addition, Nordson Corporation Foundation donated $25K to the fund to continue the work in Lorain County because of its commitment to racial equity.
$50,100 was awarded in the first round of grants to 4 organizations:
El Centro – $13,058
- Provide a series of training to Lorain County Enforcement Department and officers designed to create awareness and provide education on the Hispanic and Latinx Community in Lorain county.
Leaders of Today – $12,542
- Assists Elyria and Lorain high school students with the design, construction, and installation of signs that will promote public art and community-centric designs within Lorain County.
Lorain County Urban League – $12,500
- Engage the community in dialogue and seek to bring the Lorain County residents together by promoting acceptance and understanding about differing views while reading the same book.
YWCA Elyria – $12,000
- Assist with the transition of the YWCA Community Anti-Hate Taskforce to the YWCA Race Equity Center.
One of the grant recipients, Leaders of Today (LOT), is an organization that actively engages with Lorain County youth through Community Service, Mentorship, and a Leadership Development Series. “The 2019 Community Heath Assessment had some alarming data about Lorain County youth feeling sad or hopeless,” says Marsalis Hammons, Founder & Executive Director of Leaders of Today. “Our project will introduce students to public art while addressing youth mental health and neighborhood blight. For our students being in a virtual place, this public art project is an opportunity for them to express themselves differently and positively uplift our community. We will be collaborating with Elyria Arts Council to bring this project to our community.”
The Racial Equity Fund has a Community Advisory Committee comprised of local community members that review the grant applications and select the grantees. Assata Imani Cheers, Community Engagement Fellow at the Community Foundation, says, “I am pleased to announce that our Racial Equity Fund will allow Hammons’ selfless leadership to continue to have an everlasting, positive impact on our leaders of today and tomorrow.”
The Community Foundation invites corporate entities, individuals, and organizations to support racial equity to please contribute to the fund via peoplewhocare.org. Donations of any amount are welcomed, and all contributions are tax-deductible.