By Special at AFRO
BALTIMORE — The Baltimore Community Foundation (BCF) is proud to announce the launch of the Black Philanthropy Circle. The Black Philanthropy Circle is a donor-driven 501(c)3 nonprofit fund focused on charitable donations to nonprofit organizations that directly support black people and communities in the Baltimore metro area. The Circle has begun its first grantmaking cycle and is accepting applications until February 28, 2022.
Founded by a group of more than 30 black business and civic leaders, the Black Philanthropy Circle was created to cultivate an inclusive philanthropic community, build the capacity of Baltimore’s black nonprofits, and impact the black community. of Greater Baltimore as a whole. The Circle draws on a deep tradition of charitable giving in the Black community. According to a report by the WK Kellogg Foundation, African Americans donate 25% more of their income annually than white Americans.
“Baltimore has a rich history of black philanthropy by men and women. The power of the Black Philanthropy Circle is the pooling of our funds to support Black-led nonprofits and those that impact the Black community,” said Alicia Wilson, Esq., co-founder of the Black Philanthropy Circle and vice president for economic development at Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Health System.
Most founding members contributed $10,000 or more to start the fund, which sets the group apart from other donor circles where the typical starting contribution is around $2,500.
“The Black Philanthropy Circle is an undeniable example that black success and wealth thrives in Baltimore,” said Shanaysha Sauls, president and CEO of the Baltimore Community Foundation. “At BCF, we are proud to partner with this incredible community of changemakers, who are dedicating their collective time and resources to blazing the trail for a stronger, more equitable Baltimore.”
For its first grantmaking cycle, the Circle plans to award $25,000 grants to nonprofit organizations that are Black-led or based in Black communities in the Greater Baltimore area. Grant decisions will be made by Spring 2022.
The Circle will give priority to organizations whose areas of interest are:
- arts & culture;
- Economic well-being (placement, labor training, etc.);
- Education, Leisure and Youth;
- Community organization (non-political) and community service;
- Personal services;
- health and wellbeing
“Supporting organizations with such areas of focus will have a significant impact on improving Black communities in the Baltimore metro area,” said Savonne Ferguson, Esq., co-founder of the Black Philanthropy Circle and senior vice president, chief compliance officer (mutual funds) and associate general counsel at Neuberger Berman. “This support is critical to strengthening and moving Baltimore forward.”
Over $550,000 has already been raised to support the Black Philanthropy Circle’s mission. The Circle plans to use its launch year to continue to grow the fund and its membership base.
“The most exciting part of the Black Philanthropy Circle is the diversity within the group. It is a powerful convergence of an older generation of black philanthropists with a new generation of black philanthropists who want to use their resources, power and influence to have a positive impact on a community that has given them so much,” continued Wilson. “A significant portion of the members of the Founding Black Philanthropy Circle are in their late 30s and early 40s and are first generation in many respects. Simply put, the Black Philanthropy Circle represents Black Baltimore’s highest ideal – that we are best when we give, support and care for each other.
For more information on the Black Philanthropy Circle, visit bcf.org/fund/bpcirc/. For nonprofit organizations interested in applying for a Black Philanthropy Circle grant, visit bcf.org/black-philanthropy-circle/.
About the Baltimore Community Foundation
For 50 years, the Baltimore Community Foundation (BCF) has connected people who are passionate about their city and committed to their philanthropy. BCF amplifies donor philanthropy with strategic grants, impact investments, special initiatives, and advocacy to strengthen schools and neighborhoods. Visit www.bcf.org to discover meaningful giving, invest your funds wisely, and join a diverse community working for a better Baltimore.
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The post AFRO Exclusive: Black Philanthropy Circle Launches in Baltimore, Announces Inaugural Round of Grants appeared first on AFRO American Newspapers.