News & Event
FEBRUARY 24, 2022 — To mobilize long-term investments that will strengthen the Black community and achieve an equitable Richmond, our region's Black giving circles SisterFund and Ujima Legacy Fund partnered with the Community Foundation to create the Amandla Fund for Economic and Racial Justice.
“The Amandla Fund serves as a thought leader on how to diversify philanthropy and build collaborative opportunities,” said Robert Dortch Jr., Amandla Fund leader and chair of Philanthropy Southeast Board of Trustees. “We’re encouraging all these different partners — the giving circles, the Community Foundation, corporate donors, individual donors and investors – to come together around the question, ‘How do we help create wealth-building opportunities for the African American community that eliminate historic and systemic economic disparities?’”
Through extensive research, consultation with national experts, and strategic planning, the Amandla Fund has identified two initial areas of focus that will boost Black economic mobility in Greater Richmond:
Sustainable homeownership has been proven to be a highly effective route to building wealth and intergenerational economic mobility. The Fund will support efforts to increase homeownership opportunities for Black families.
Supporting Black-led and Black-serving organizations offers a proven path to increasing equity and opening opportunities for employment. The Fund will support initiatives to train, mentor, and increase African Americans in nonprofit leadership roles.
Learn more about the strategies and goals of the Fund in our latest report.
View the Amandla Fund Report
APRIL 22, 2021 — In celebration of Earth Day 2021, the ConseRVAtion Fund has announced five new grants totaling $90,000 to support organizations and projects in Greater Richmond that focus on benefiting the environment, conserving natural resources and enhancing regional sustainability. Grants support a wide array of projects, from the Virginia Oyster Shell Recycling Program to the 12,000 tree giveaway program during Arbor Day 2021.
“What makes this grant process exciting for me is seeing the different ideas that the community can come up with,” said Ron Felmus, a ConseRVAtion Fund advisor. “We try to give applicants a lot of room to get creative in finding new solutions for environmental sustainability.”
Darquan Robertson, Groundwork RVA’s landscaping crew chief, tends to a garden plot. Groundwork RVA is a local nonprofit that works with Richmond youth to facilitate environmental, economic and social wellbeing in neighborhoods by transforming blighted, neglected open spaces into public assets
This year marks the second grant cycle from the ConseRVAtion Fund, a donor advised fund of the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond. Grant recipients and descriptions are listed below:
Click here to learn more about the ConseRVAtion Fund.
FEBURARY 14, 2022 — In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, SisterFund and Ujima Legacy Fund were honored by Virginia Union University (VUU) during its 44th Annual MLK Jr. Community Leaders Celebration with the “Beloved Community Economic Justice Award.” The two giving circles were recognized for their “unwavering and long-standing commitment to continuing Dr. King’s legacy of uplifting the ‘beloved community’ here in the Commonwealth.”
In a recognition video produced by CBS 6 and VUU, leaders Derrick Johnson and Jill Coleman share how the giving circles are living out Dr. King’s legacy by making a difference in the lives of young people in the community and by “demonstrating the collective impact a few can have on many” by bringing together financial resources to have a greater impact.
The circles were also recognized for their partnership with the Community Foundation for creating the Amandla Fund for Economic and Racial Justice, which mobilizes long-term investments to strengthen the Black community and achieve racial justice.
Watch an interview with the leaders below.
NOVEMBER 19, 2020 — The Greater Richmond region and communities across the nation are confronting two crises during 2020: the COVID-19 global pandemic that continues to disproportionately impact people of color; and an awakening of systemic racism that has afflicted our country since its founding. This moment in our history has caused the local philanthropic sector to act with greater urgency to find collaborative and innovative ways to solve complex issues related to racial equity and social justice. There is a desire to drive charitable investments to core issues and root causes, as well as to connect historically disjointed services.
This summer, leaders from two of the region’s Black Giving Circles - SisterFund and Ujima Legacy Fund - came together with the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond to launch the Amandla Fund for Social and Racial Justice. Pronounced “ah-MOND-la,” the fund derives its name from the word for "power and strength” and was a popular rallying cry in the days of resistance against apartheid in South Africa. The Amandla Fund is the first collaborative, Black-led endowment in Greater Richmond on target to mobilize long-term investments to strengthen the Black community and work towards racial justice on a local scale.
“Community foundations are at the center of charitably-minded individuals, nonprofit partners, policymakers and business leaders,” shares Dr. Pamela Royal, the Community Foundation’s first African American board chair. “We have a responsibility to use this position to build, connect and leverage diverse sectors, voices, and organizations to harness collective influence that can create long-term, sustainable change.”
“During 2021, we will focus on donor outreach and engagement to meet our overall funding goals, building the new fund’s organizational infrastructure and finalizing strategic investment priorities,” said Evette Roots, who serves on the leadership committee of the Amandla Fund. “As new donors join this network, we are eager to use our extraordinary combination of financial and human capital to evolve the landscape of philanthropy. With intention and persistence, we will invest in ways that will empower the Black community while creating more equitable systems that will result in greater access to opportunities across the region."
As part of Altria’s initial $5-million commitment in 2020 to address systemic racism faced by Black Americans and advance social and economic equity, the company contributed $500,000 to the Fund. “This is a new investment area for us. We will listen and learn from local organizations and leaders to support meaningful solutions,” said Jennifer Hunter, Senior Vice President, Corporate Citizenship, Altria Client Services. “The Amandla Fund brings more and different community voices to the decisions driving community change, and this is an important shift in building a stronger, more inclusive Richmond.”
The Community Foundation and Dominion Energy also contributed $200,000 each, and other corporate groups and individual donors gave $100,000 to reach an initial investment goal of $1 million. “This initiative will help promote community reconciliation and rebuilding and make a real difference in the communities we serve,” said Ed Baine, president of Dominion Energy Virginia. “We recognize how much more work there is to do and are committed to being part of the change taking place.” Right now, the Fund’s leaders aspire to raise $10 million. Companies and individuals are also invited to contribute to the Amandla Fund to help create more equitable possibilities for everyone in our community.
“This is Richmond’s opportunity to demonstrate how to make sustainable investments that address systemic inequities. As the former Capital of the Confederacy, it seems appropriate that we show the way forward,” said Derrick Johnson, also an Amandla Fund committee leader. “We hope all Richmonders will feel compelled to contribute to this Fund as we strive to remove existing barriers and lift up new opportunities so everyone in our community can thrive.”
APRIL 1, 2019 — The Jenkins Foundation is pleased to announce support of 16 local nonprofits with $940,000 during their spring cycle. This includes multi-year support to CARITAS for the Healing Place for Men and Women and the Virginia League for Planned Parenthood for their East End clinic.
The Jenkins Foundation is focused on providing equitable access to primary care and mental health care services, as well as preventing and treating substance use disorders in the Richmond region. The result is a more efficient health care delivery system and a safer, healthier and more productive Greater Richmond community.
Below are the grant recipients and descriptions:
Access Now, Inc.
$40,000 to provide specialty medical care to the uninsured.
Better Housing Coalition
$40,000 to support medical case management and access to health education for elders who wish to remain independent in their homes.
Daily Planet Health Services
$50,000 to support Medical Respite staff in providing quality healthcare to vulnerable homeless individuals.
$50,000 to support the Early Childhood Development Initiative.
Richmond Behavioral Health Foundation
$50,000 to fund a second Health Educator position in the Richmond Integrated Community Health Clinic.
Virginia Dental Association Foundation
$25,000 to provide case management for Donated Dental Services and assist the coordination of free dental clinics.
Virginia League for Planned Parenthood
$100,000 for capital for the East End clinic. (First year of a 3-year, $500,000 grant.)
$20,000 to support the training and supervision of volunteer child advocates.
$50,000 to help children build resilience to trauma by providing access to outpatient Mental Health (MHS) and Immediate Response (IR) services.
Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) Inc.
$50,000 to provide intensive, trauma-focused mental health treatment for children and caregivers.
$20,000 to support training for at least 20 new volunteer advocates to serve abused or neglected children.
Medical College of Virginia Foundation
$50,000 to support family navigation services that connect families to mental health services in Virginia.
St. Joseph's Villa
$30,000 to implement and evaluate new Trauma-Informed Care efforts.
Virginia Home for Boys and Girls
$10,000 to support free, monthly Youth Mental Health First Aid Workshops.
YWCA of Richmond
$50,000 to support mental health services intake for survivors of intimate partner violence.
$250,000 for capital costs associated with the Healing Place for Women. (Final year of a 4-year, $1 million grant.)
$50,000 for operating support for the Healing Place for Men. (Second year of a 3-year, $150,000 grant.)
About the Jenkins Foundation: The Jenkins Foundation is a supporting organization of the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond whose mission is to improve the health of Greater Richmond through strategic and impactful philanthropy. Formed in 1995 following the sale of Retreat Hospital, the Jenkins Foundation honors the legacy of the hospital’s founder Annabella Jenkins, who was committed to providing compassionate care for the medically underserved. Today grant making and leadership efforts are focused on health care services, working collaboratively with philanthropic partners and learning with local health organizations. Since inception, the Jenkins Foundation has awarded over $37 million in grants to local organizations. http://jenkinsfoundation-va.org/
MAY 20, 2020 — The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund continues to grow with an outpouring of support from individuals and businesses from across the region, including contributions of stimulus checks and from individuals who have fought COVID-19 themselves. Notably, the fund received a significant boost through recent gifts from two national companies with a local presence – The Humana Foundation and Facebook.
Providing a generous gift of $500,000, The Humana Foundation has designated Richmond as one of its 11 Bold Goal communities across the country. Through this program, they have adopted a population health strategy to improve the health of local residents by investing in programs that address food insecurity and social isolation among seniors – two areas of focus for the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund.
“The Humana Foundation understands the far-reaching strain the pandemic has placed on many organizations working on the frontlines to provide healthcare, food and employment for those disproportionality affected by the COVID-19 health crisis, and our aim is to remove barriers and help them respond, recover and rebuild,” said Walter D. Woods, Chief Executive Officer of The Humana Foundation. “We are supporting the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond because of the role they play in helping Central Virginia community organizations and public agencies assist people most affected by COVID-19.”
Facebook awarded $100,000 to the COVID-19 Response Fund as part of its overall response to the pandemic. This is in addition to their $250,000 investment in the RVA Small Business Relief Fund, established in partnership with Chamber RVA, and a grant of $280,000 to Henrico County Public Schools through the Henrico Education Foundation. Facebook has been part of the greater Richmond community since breaking ground on their data center in 2017.
"Henrico is our home, and we are invested in the long-term vitality of the community,” said Amber Tillman, Community Development Regional Manager, Facebook. “We are happy to be a part of the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund and to help provide resources to those who need it most during this difficult time."
As a demonstration of what a community can do when it comes together, the Fund has now raised in excess of $5.5 million dollars. Since its launch in mid-March, it has also distributed $2.5 million in grants to approximately 80 local nonprofit organizations and government agencies. An advisory committee from the philanthropic, business and public sectors are reviewing and distributing grants on a rolling basis.
Established in partnership between the Community Foundation, the Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia and Plan RVA, the fund was created with the dynamic nature of disaster situations in mind and, therefore, was designed to remain flexible to changing needs. Early phase grants from the COVID-19 Response Fund focused on emergency response strategies to ensure the health and safety of our community. However, as the region begins to reopen, the fund is expanding its scope to include longer term recovery, primarily through grants to organizations providing eviction prevention remedies, rental assistance and employment support services.
“While the fund will continue to accept emergency requests related to food and health care, we are beginning to look at the longer term, economic impact on individuals and families,” said Scott Blackwell, Chief Community Engagement Officer for the Community Foundation. “Philanthropy often plays a significant role in in lifting up people who face barriers to financial stability, but the pandemic has only amplified and exacerbated the need. Through partnerships with contributors like The Humana Foundation and Facebook’s Henrico Data Center, we are in a stronger position to help residents in need remain in their homes and return to work.”
While challenges continue and new needs emerge, the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund continues to demonstrate a deep commitment from all sectors to remain attentive, collaborative and solution oriented. The fund is anticipated to continue providing support to local organizations for several more months, or until funds are depleted.
Individual online donations to the fund are processed through United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg. United Way also provided $100,000 in funds to encourage online donations, a milestone that was reached last month.
“Our region’s needs are increasing, but so is the community’s response,” said James Taylor, President & CEO of United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg. “I am glad to see the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund expand to meet a broader range of needs and am grateful for the additional support from The Humana Foundation and Facebook’s Henrico Data Center.”
To view a full list of grants awarded to date, click here. To learn more about the fund or to donate, go to www.togetheroneregion.org.
DECEMBER 17, 2021 — The Community Foundation’s new Fund for Entrepreneurial Growth is pleased to announce its first round of grants, totaling $200,000 to eight organizations. The fund, supported by pooled contributions from the Foundation and individual donors, was created as a complement to the Foundation’s existing workforce strategy, by adding a focus on supporting existing small businesses and individuals with entrepreneurial aspirations. We believe that strengthening small businesses and the entrepreneurial ecosystem in our region is an imperative as we endeavor to create a community where everyone has access to economic opportunities.
Over the past year, philanthropy has begun to reimagine its role in supporting small business, recognizing that the quest for economic justice includes creating an environment where small business ownership and entrepreneurship is a viable path for all individuals. Locally, programs that introduce youth to entrepreneurship are being developed and implemented. Additionally, more resources to support existing business owners and entrepreneurs, particularly BIPOC founders, are emerging, which will help these businesses—and the communities in which they operate--achieve sustainability and economic success.
“The emergence of the Fund for Entrepreneurial Growth is a key next step in the formalization of opportunities for emerging entrepreneurs in the Richmond Metro Area. The wide range of programs focused on entrepreneurial education and support currently available, and growing, reinforces both the progress and the potential of RVA, as a hotbed of innovation and small business growth for all.”
~ Art Espey, member of the Fund’s Advisory Committee
Guided by an advisory committee of experienced local entrepreneurs, the Fund for Entrepreneurial Growth identified three areas of focus: support for small business owners, entrepreneurial programming for youth, and opportunities to expand and diversify the start-up incubation and acceleration ecosystem. Through an invitation-only grants process, the first round of grant recipients are listed below.
3409 Moore Street
Richmond, VA 23230
P.O. Box 716495
Philadelphia, PA 19171-6495
P: (804) 330-7400
F: (804) 330-5992
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