Racial Equity Initiative

Supporting LGBTQ People Of Color Organizations

In 2007, Stonewall Community Foundation, in partnership with Funders for LGBTQ Issues, launched the Racial Equity Initiative, a grantmaking and capacity building program designed to strengthen New York City’s autonomous LGBTQ people of color organizations. The Racial Equity Initiative is a nationally-coordinated effort linking eight charitable foundations and more than 80 grantee organizations.

The initiative was conceived as a way to help LGBTQ grantmakers create a sustainable pool of resources to support LGBTQ people of color communities. Support is directed to groups whose missions and programs specifically center on and whose leadership and membership primarily reflects communities of color.

Grant Recipients
Since 2009, Stonewall has awarded more than $110,000 in general operating and technical assistance grants to a cohort of seven organizations:

  • Q-Wave
  • Freedom Train Productions
  • Northeast Two-Spirit Society
  • Gay and Lesbian Dominican Empowerment Organization (GALDE)
  • Gay Asian and Pacific Islander Men of New York (GAPIMNY)
  • South Asian LGBT Association (SALGA)
  • Lavender Light Gospel Choir

Learning More About People of Color Organizations
Informed by a comprehensive planning assessment, the Racial Equity Initiative has accomplished a great deal.

  • In the fall of 2008, Stonewall published a report on LGBTQ people of color organizations in New York City, their infrastructure, theories of change, and most importantly, the value added to the LGBTQ Movement by their work.
  • In 2009, Stonewall assembled a Racial Equity Initiative Advisory Panel, which provided expertise and leadership with regard to grantee selection, communications, and prioritization of capacity building goals.

Building Connections & Inspiring Progress
In December 2011, the four-year program will culminate in BOLD, a historic three-day gathering of all of the REI participants, both foundation and grantee partners. BOLD will employ a movement-focused framework, providing a unique opportunity for LGBTQ people of color to create meaningful connections; define some unifying intentions; and develop shared language to present as a critical mass. Moreover, BOLD will link LGBTQ social justice leaders from communities of color to a broad spectrum of progressive funders, who together represent a vast amount of resources and philanthropic networks.