The Aligned Giving Strategy for the Movement for Black Lives is an attempt, initiated by Solidaire in partnership with other donors and philanthropists, to collectively create sustained support for the Movement for Black Lives. Over the next five years, we pledge to work in partnership with the movement to ensure that Black-led organizations working to build power in their communities have the financial resources they need to stand for justice and dignity for all. Learn more in our AGS Participant Brief.
We recently launched an Aligned Giving Portal where you can:
- Read overviews of our four strategies, as well as our Inspired Giving option
- View proposals, summaries, and contact information for organizations in the M4BL ecosystem
- Access resources, recorded webinars, and testimonials
- Set your intentions and manage your giving online!
We invite you to join us as a Solidaire member or campaign partner. This is an opportunity to be a part of history in the making!
Visit the Portal to get started: alignedgiving.org
Why is investing in black-led organizing important?
Our nation is on the verge of significant transformation. For hundreds of years, we have been a society defined by race and class. At certain points – when large numbers of people have come together and put their lives on the line to demand change – we have made progress. But that progress has been slow. Today, we are on the edge of another great transition in the way we think about who we are, who deserves to flourish, and how we can ensure that every individual in our society lives in safety and dignity.
What is “Black-led organizing”? As DeAngelo Bester and Valery Jean put it, “Black organizing [is] the recruitment, consciousness-raising, skill-building and leadership development of Black people, conducted by Black people, in order to collectively challenge anti-Black racism and fight for civil, political, economic, gender, social and cultural rights.”1 The definition of black-led organizing indicates not only what population is being organized, but who is doing the organizing, crafting the purpose and issue campaigns, and starting and building the institutions.
There are many reasons that this field is important to invest in right now. The systematic violence and oppression – physical, cultural, legal and financial – suffered by Black people in America from the nation’s founding to the present day is extreme. Wealth, access to education, access to healthcare and jobs, all continue to be marred by severe racial disparities. And as many scholars and public intellectuals have noted, the systematic, legalized dehumanization of Black people in America, from slavery to Jim Crow to mass incarceration, is both the “original sin” of our republic, and a key pillar that upholds all of its oppressive functions. Tackling this oppression benefits not only Black people in America, but also all the other groups whose subjugation relies on tactics of dehumanization and marginalization. In addition, investing in black-led organizing plays a strategic role in that it enables us to challenge political strategies that have racialized government in the eyes of middle-class white America, which strategies have depressed support for everything from healthcare to minimum wage to environmental justice by suggesting that these actions constitute an “unfair” transfer of wealth to poor people of color. In short, this approach is carefully targeted, while also benefitting the interests of the range of groups and issues that we care passionately about.
We are also committed to supporting black-led organizing in recognition of the fact that philanthropy has played a role in perpetuating aspects of systemic racism.2 On this issue, dollars have not flowed in proportion to professed funder enthusiasm for the movement. We call on our community of donors to invest in reparations for historical divestment from communities of color, which has directly benefitted the sources from which we draw our wealth.
The Aligned Giving strategy focuses funding on the Movement for Black Lives, which has been challenging the ongoing role of racism in America, creating a national dialogue that we have not had in decades. This movement is deeply connected to other social movements, as it contains intersections with gender rights, economic inequality, education, immigration, and politics. In its short few years of existence, this vibrant social movement has transformed the American conversation about race, galvanized many thousands of participants, shifted political priorities, and impacted policy discussions at all levels of government. At this juncture, significant funding is required to sustain, mature, and grow the movement, and we invite you to join us in meeting this call.
1 Strengthening Black Organizing in the United States
2 We will be co-funding some research to show how much of private philanthropy is going to white-led organizations v black-led organizations.