BY ANGELA AMANKWAAH
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
The recent murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery are among the countless innocent lives lost at the hands of the racist American justice system and these killings continue to put many of us in a state of grief. Black Lives Matter, which was created after the unjust murder of Trayvon Martin six years ago, came back to the forefront of the national conversation. There are continued protests in the likes of Portland, New York City, Louisville, as well as in cities worldwide demanding justice and police reform. We’ve also seen a huge outpouring of financial support as people are finding other ways to participate in social change.
With that financial support also comes the need to think critically about how we can best donate our dollars wisely. Which foundations advance the efforts of the people fighting for BIPOC and justice for those murdered? What organizations and grassroot efforts will aid in unheard voices having access to the microphone? Seeing that we are still battling the spread of COVID-19 and the majority of essential workers are from marginalized communities, donating and putting your money towards organizations and programs that invest in the uplifting of BIPOC, as well as removing your money from systems that keep BIPOC from advancing, is key to sustaining the movement.
As time passes, it’s easy to get complacent but don’t. For change to occur it’s a matter of continuing the protests, donations, and contacting government officials to make your grievances heard. Or as the late Congressman and Civil Rights Activist John Lewis puts it, “Get in good trouble; necessary trouble.”
Looking to remain involved? Here are three points to keep in mind before donating:
Pick a cause that aligns with your humanitarian spirit. It’ll ensure you won’t hesitate to donate again if you can and you’ll proudly advocate for it.
Scan the site to see how donations are allocated — 100% is the goal!
Consider donating even if you don’t have the money! Watch this Youtuber’s video and others like it. They dedicate ad revenue to Black Lives Matter causes, Minnesota’s protesters, and many other funds.
The Equity Organization Historically the War on Drugs, much like the prison system, was funded to target impoverished communities. The Equity Org is a criminal justice reform organization working towards rectifying America’s unjust, discriminatory, and unscientific drug policies.
The Freedom Fund In tandem with raising awareness of the over-incarceration of those who identify as LGBTQIA+, The Freedom Fund will pay bail for those in jails or in immigration facilities.
Act Blue Bail Funds Act Blue splits your donation to multiple bail funds, mutual aid funds, and social justice organizations. This is a great way to support smaller organizations that may not get as much national attention.
Unicorn Riot Fund This fund is to support reporters who work to build a platform that focuses on primary source reporting and on-the-ground coverage. The site is ad-free and investigates social and environmental issues.
The Okra Project The Okra Project is a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by offering home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals. Whether it’s by sending chefs to the clients’ homes or delivering them food, it’s a way to provide the community a delicious, reliable source of nutrition.
Trans Women of Color Survival Fund This survival fund was created to cultivate economic opportunities and affirming spaces for trans women of color and their families. Given the increased deaths of Black and Brown Trans women as well as their disproportionate impact due to incarceration, homelessness, and trauma, TWOCC aims to provide aid for both immediate and long term needs.
The Loveland Foundation Founded by activist and educator Rachel Cargle, The Loveland Foundation focuses on providing Black women and girls access to mental health resources. Resources and initiatives are collaborative and they prioritize opportunity, validation, and healing.
The Hood Incubator The Hood Incubator is committed to ending the War on Drugs and reversing its harmful impact on Black communities. Their strategies include Cannabis Economic Development, Cannabis Justice Policy Reform, and a Cannabis Justice Organization.
Equity First Alliance This organization is centered in transformative justice and healing communities impacted by the War on Drugs. They do this by advancing equity and corporate social responsibility in the cannabis industry. In addition they provide education, opportunities for healing, and community building initiatives for our communities.
Black Lives Matter Global Network Fund BLM Global fund makes sure all Black Lives Matter groups, globally, have funds needed to plan and protest for their communities.