Letter from our president and CEO

Dear friends,

We envision a world where girls and gender-expansive youth of color have the safety, freedom, wellness, and resources to thrive, to dream, and to lead.

At Grantmakers for Girls of Color, we are striving to create a philanthropic home that follows the leadership of girls and gender-expansive youth of color, and invests in their liberation.

Even before this crisis, there was indisputable evidence that our girls and gender-expansive youth of color were experiencing harm. One example is the surge in the number of girls, and particularly Black and Latina girls, in contact with the U.S. criminal legal and juvenile court systems. Another example is the failure to design a robust response to the disproportionate number of Indigenous girls and women who are missing and murdered. As Tanisha “Wakumi” Douglas, founder of the S.O.U.L. Sisters Leadership Collective, framed it in a webinar I moderated, “these young people are always the first punching bags in moments of stress like this.” In that same webinar, Sara Haskie-Mendoza, Xinachtli Girls, reminded us that racism is the nation’s most pervasive pre-existing condition. Despite these systemic challenges, the spirit and resilience of girls and gender-expansive youth of color remains undimmed. They continue to lead local, national, and global efforts to achieve economic, social, racial, and gender justice.

We at G4GC are driven by the absolute love and reverence we have for girls and gender-expansive youth of color, their leadership, their tenacity, and their vision. To that end, as we continue to build a philanthropic practice that elevates the stories, strategies, and solutions of girls and gender-expansive youth of color toward liberatory, feminist futures, we are excited to welcome and embrace the wisdom of our G4GC Youth Advisory Committee and Design Team.

From the launch of the Love Is Healing COVID-19 Response Fund and the Black Girl Freedom Fund, to growing our internal capacity in communications and research, we are also driven by the urgency of needing to meet the moment. To date, through Love is Healing, our first grantmaking program, we have awarded more than $3 million in the last year to 150 organizations around the country and in U.S. territories, the majority of which has been directed toward mitigating the impact of COVID-19. More than 90 percent of grantee partners report women and girls of color are key decision makers in their organizations.

About Grantmakers for Girls of Color

(I feel most valued, safe and powerful) When I see people that look like me being represented."

Youth from Seattle, WA (BGFF survey)

Our Shared approach

Grantmakers for Girls of Color works to amplify and mobilize resources to support transformative organizing work to dismantle systems of oppression in the U.S. led by girls and gender-expansive youth of color. The large and growing Grantmakers for Girls of Color community is united by a shared approach to the work, including the following shared set of values (click on each icon to read more):

Authentic

Accountable

Transformational

Urgent and Results
Oriented

Inclusive

Embraces Freedom & Creativity

Motivated by Love

Our Team

We are building a growing team that embodies our values of accountability, urgency, transformation, inclusivity, authenticity, and love (click on names to learn more about our team).

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Dr. Monique W. Morris

President & CEO

Maheen Kaleem, Esq.

Deputy Director

Dr. Whitney Richards-Calathes

Senior Director of Research, Policy, and Advocacy

Josefina Casati

Senior Director of Communications

Kyndall Clark Osibodu

Manager of Organizational Health and Learning

Cidra M. Sebastien

Black Girl Freedom Fund Manager

Dominique Fulling

Manager, Technical Support, Special Projects, and Office of the President

Our Advisory Board

Grantmakers for Girls of Color is grateful to have the partnership and guidance of these phenomenal philanthropy leaders as we continue to strengthen our programmatic agenda and support our communities (click on their names to learn more about our advisory board).

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Tynesha McHarris

Founder and Principal, Black Harvest

Co-founder, Black Feminist Fund

Prachi Patankar

Program Officer

Foundation for Just Society

Leticia Peguero

Vice President of Programs

Nathan Cummings Foundation

Tia Oros Peters (Zuni)

Chief Executive Officer

Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Peoples

Ada Williams Prince

Program Strategy and Investment

Pivotal Ventures

Bré Anne Rivera

Program Fellow

The Black Trans Fund

Lateefah Simon

President

Akonadi Foundation

Teresa C. Younger

President and CEO

Ms. Foundation for Women

A Year of Growth and Impact

What's safe for me is (to) walk down the street and not be worried about being shot. Now that’s safe."

Youth from Birmingham (Start From The Ground Up report)

Key 2020 Moments

Despite all the challenges, 2020 was a year of tremendous growth and impact for Grantmakers for Girls of Color as we worked to meet the urgency of the moment en route to our long-term goals and vision. Below, please see a brief snapshot of key moments that shaped Grantmakers for Girls of Color in 2020 (click the month to read more).

Dr. Monique W. Morris becomes Grantmakers for Girls of Color’s first Executive Director*. Dr. Morris is a lifelong advocate for improving the educational and socioeconomic conditions for girls and women of color, and an award-winning author, educator and activist. She holds three decades of experience in education, civil rights, juvenile and social justice. (*Note: Title changed to President and CEO effective April, 2021.)

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • Aug
  • Sept
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec

We Launched Two Funds in 2020

Love is Healing COVID-19 Response Fund

Our first grantmaking initiative responded with urgency, and moved grants to support girls and gender-expansive youth of color facing conditions that have been deeply exacerbated by the pandemic.

Read The Story

Black Girl Freedom Fund and the #1Billion4BlackGirls Campaign

Black women leaders unite, and call for the philanthropic investment of $1 billion in Black girls over the next decade.


Read The Story

G4GC in Community

One of our core strategies is creating spaces and opportunities to advance racial and gender justice, and issues that impact girls and gender-expansive youth of color. Click the links to watch these webinars.

Webinar

A webinar with Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw on why philanthropy must use an intersectional approach to meet this moment of national reckoning around anti-Black racism and other forms of injustice.

Watch the video

Webinar

A webinar on how COVID-19 is impacting girls and gender-expansive youth of color led by our grantee partners S.O.U.L. Sisters Leadership Collective, the National Crittenton Foundation and National Compadres Network.

Watch the video

Webinar

A webinar on how we can best respond to girls and gender-expansive youth of color in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, with Dr. Lane Rolling.

Watch the video

G4GC in the media

As part of our work, we aim to change the narrative about girls and gender-expansive youth of color, and ensure that the issues and solutions that impact them are part of the public discourse. Here are a few media publications where Grantmakers for Girls of Color and Black Girl Freedom Fund (with an *) were featured in 2020.

Our Impact by the numbers

Grant partners and funding overview

In 2020, Grantmakers for Girls of Color launched our first-ever grantmaking program, the Love is Healing Covid-19 Response Fund. See below for more detail on who, what and where we funded. This data is based on information reported by grantee partners in response to surveys from Grantmakers for Girls of Color on their work.

Who we funded

In 2020, we funded 141 organizations

We gave a total of $2,916,000

Through the Love is Healing Fund, COVID-19 responses across particular priority areas accounted for 92% of our grants. The remaining 8% of the organizations received funds in response to security crises in the face of political violence or because they were situated in and supporting girls and gender-expansive youth in especially marginalized communities.

The majority, or 92% of grantee partners (130 out of 141) responded to questions about who the key decision-makers in their organization were. We learned important information about how organizations resourcing girls and gender-expansive youth of color understand and articulate leadership.

We gave them options to select any of the following categories: femmes of color, womxn of color, girls of color, and nonbinary/gender-expansive youth of color. We also gave them an option to check them all.

93%

The majority 93%, self-identified their leadership as womxn* of color.

15%

Notably, grantees described their key-decision makers to be a mosaic: 15% checked off all four of these categories, 19% checked off three, and 28% checked off two categories

2

2 organizations named that their key decision makers were exclusively girls of color

A fifth of our grantee responders, 21% of organizations, chose “other” as a category for their key decision makers. They wrote in nuanced, layered responses that remind us that our grantee community is complex, intersectional, and deeply rooted in their specific and diverse communities. Their responses boldly say that “one size does not fit all.” Among the descriptors they used are:

  • Black immigrant women and girls
  • Two-spirit individuals
  • Undocumented women
  • Trans women
  • At-risk women of color (teen parents & low-income families)
  • Immigrants
  • BIPOC survivors
  • Formerly incarcerated

* Term used in intersectional feminism, as an alternative spelling to avoid the suggestion of sexism perceived in the sequences m-a-n and m-e-n, and to be inclusive of trans and nonbinary women.

Where we funded

Our grantmaking spans across 32 states, with three organizations specifically naming that they do national work. Our grantmaking is distributed across the following geographic regions:

Love is healing grantee partners

In the Words of Our Grantees

As the global health pandemic took hold, it laid bare our communities’ structural vulnerabilities. And yet, through these conditions, our grantee community not only sought to sustain their programming, intergenerational relationships, organizing work and service provision—they grew them, shifting, and tailoring their work to respond to the needs of their people—our people. Their work emboldens us to continue growing our Love is Healing Fund. As we revisit our work from the past year, let’s hold close both the immense loss and the powerful community that defined 2020. Read our grant partners’ own words how they describe living in the midst of the pandemic as well as the mutual aid and responsive work that our grant community did and continues to do.

Click on each quotation mark

Love is healing grantee list

Our grantmaking during the year spans across 32 states and all geographic regions. Use the “drop down” navigation below to identify which of our grant partners (through April 2021) are in a particular city:

organizations

G4GC Financials

(If I had one billion I would offer) free, accessible, good quality healthcare for all Black girls, cisgender as well as transgender."

Youth from Brooklyn NY (BFFF survey)

In our first year, we experienced incredibly significant growth. We started the year with a little over $1 million and with one institutional partner, and ended the year with $18 million in revenue, exceeding our anticipated financial growth by $2 million. Most importantly, we were able to partner with more than 10 institutional co-investors and a number of individual donors who believe deeply in the rights of girls and gender-expansive youth to access safety, dignity, and power, and in their ability to lead us towards more just futures.

First and foremost, we would like to thank MacKenzie Scott for including G4GC in her first round of grants in 2020, and for being among the first individuals to trust our vision.

We would also like to thank our G4GC institutional partners, which include:

  • Aditi Foundation
  • The Andrus Family Fund
  • Blue Shield of California Foundation
  • The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation
  • Kolibri Foundation
  • Nathan Cummings Foundation
  • NoVo Foundation
  • Nellie Mae Foundation
  • Wellspring Philanthropic Fund
  • Pivotal Ventures
  • The Skoll Foundation
  • Anonymous Foundation

We want to thank Gilead Sciences Racial Equity Community Impact Fund for being our first corporate partner to support the Black Girl Freedom Fund, as well as our initial individual supporters, including: Shari Bhenke, Susan M. Sherrerd, and Ciara Wilson.

We are also indebted to Rashida Jones, Kelly McCreary, and Karen Richardson for their tireless support of the #1Billion4BlackGirls Campaign and the Black Girl Freedom Fund. And a special thank you to Felicia Pride, Shondaland, and the Grey's Anatomy and Station 19 teams at ABC for uplifting the #1Billion4BlackGirls campaign through their platforms.

Finally, we continue to be incredibly grateful to the more than 1,000 co-investors who gifted us with their individual support ranging anywhere from $5 to $5,000. Their generosity is a testament to what we know to be true—that we have a strong community of people surrounding us who are willing to invest their personal resources toward a more inclusive world for girls and gender-expansive color. These individuals include high school and college students, women of color-led giving circles, influencers, artists who have used performance and art, and so many others who have given so generously of themselves and their time to support our girls and youth.

The Work Continues...

Growing Momentum in 2021

What a year of growth, resiliency and impact in the midst of tremendous challenges. We are deeply grateful to our funding and grantee partners, and to girls and gender expansive youth of color themselves, for your vision and collaboration. None of this would have been possible without your partnership.

So far in 2021, the intentionality of our work continues to focus on girls and gender-expansive youth of color, and their families, with the urgency and love that this moment requires. Some highlights from 2021 include:

  • Expanding our leadership team, bringing on Josefina Casati to serve as our Senior Director of Communications, and Dr. Whitney Richards-Calathes as our Senior Director of Research, Advocacy, and Policy.
  • As part of the #1Billion4BlackGirls Campaign, organizing Black Girl Freedom Week in February, a digital celebration that included panels, conversations, health gatherings and music featuring artists, influencers, our #1Billion4BlackGirls co-founders, and of course—Black girls!
  • Launching our inaugural Youth Advisory Committee and Design Team to design a robust and comprehensive youth engagement strategy.

Throughout the year, we will share more updates and news with you as we continue to deepen and expand our work. Join us as we continue to shape Grantmakers for Girls of Color into a dynamic home where funders, movement leaders, and young people can collectively organize for a more loving, just, and joyful future.

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