2020 Resilience Fund Grants Include Focus on Black-led Organizations

Seattle Foundation grants $555,000 to help protect the rights and resilience of vulnerable residents in King County.

Seattle Foundation is announcing $555,000 in grants to 30 community-based organizations through our Resilience Fund. The 2020 round of investments support King County-based organizations directly impacted by changes in federal policies and the adverse effects of the current political climate. The chosen grantees speak to a wide range of issues, such as the following examples: providing healing circles for residents impacted by anti-Black racism; maternal health support for families of color; legal immigration services; and protections for transgender residents of King County. Of the total amount awarded, nearly half will go to support Black-led and Black-serving organizations.

The Resilience Fund was created in 2017 and provides flexible funding to protect and advance the safety, security, legal and human rights of our region’s most vulnerable residents. Since then, Seattle Foundation has distributed 163 grants totaling over $2.7 million to community-based organizations. To ensure an equitable selection process, Seattle Foundation uses a combination of staff reviews and a community review panel comprised of nonprofit leaders of color who help make final grant determinations each year.

“We know for certain communities, the negative impacts from the previous administration are long-lasting and will not immediately be erased with the stroke of a pen,” says Jonathan Cunningham, Seattle Foundation’s Senior Program Officer. “This round of funding will both allow us to re-invest in previous Resilience Fund grantees and specifically support Black-led organizations who are consistently overcoming high levels of trauma related to anti-Black racism and state-sponsored violence.”

Fund for New Citizens in the New York Community Trust, Emerald Fund, and Facebook, which pledged $1 million in support of Black business, creators and nonprofits, have also provided funding to award grants to Black-led organizations. Their investment has strengthened Seattle Foundation’s ability to support transformational, community-driven change. Several organizations selected for funding shared what they hope to accomplish with this support:

Wa Na Wari is working to create structural change and greater opportunities for Black housing stability. In January 2020, they launched the Central Area Cultural Ecosystem for the 21st Century (CACE 21). The initiative works to bring Black Central District homeowners and Black Seattle cultural workers into discussions surrounding land use policy reform.

“We were ecstatic to receive word from Seattle Foundation’s Resilience Fund that they would be supporting our vision in doing this important, community, drive data, collection work. It was a huge signal that our work would be able to move forward,” said Wa Na Wari Co-Founder Inye Wokoma.

Collective Justice - several people on a Video call

Collective Justice provides an organizational framework for restorative and transformative justice programs involving incarcerated people, survivors of harm, and communities. Their central programs focus on people currently incarcerated, survivors of violence, and individuals who want to address interpersonal conflict in their communities.

Person checking in at an AIWW event

“Thank you, Resilience Fund! Throughout the pandemic, we have continued to offer virtual Restorative and Transformative healing circles for survivors and communities that have been the most impacted by various forms of violence and oppression,” said Program Assistant Satory Adams. “With help from the Resilience Fund, Collective Justice will continue to offer these community circles in 2021.”Indian-American Community Serviceswill host family law, domestic violence, immigration, and deportation related clinics for families in crisis. The organization will also host community conversations on immigration policies and racism to raise awareness and address challenges.

“IACS is extremely grateful to Seattle Foundation’s Resilience Fund, which supports our low bono legal clinics,” said Executive Director Lalita Uppala. “The Resilience Fund has provided us the ability to address situations and needs that had no other form of support and created innovative approaches to legal clinics.”

Below is the complete list of our 2020 Resilience Fund grantees:

  1. Abundance of Hope
  2. Black Trans Task Force
  3. Brothers United In Leadership Development (BUILD)
  4. Byrd Barr Place
  5. Collective Justice
  6. Council on American-Islamic Relations of Washington State
  7. Empowering Youth and Families Outreach
  8. Fathers and Sons Together
  9. Gathering Roots 
  10. Indian-American Community Services (IACS)
  11. Iraqi Community Center of Washington
  12. Kids in Need of Defense (KIND)
  13. Legal Counsel for Youth and Children (LCYC)
  14. Mujer Al Volante
  15. Northwest Health Law Advocates
  16. Powerful Voices
  17. Somali Family Safety Task Force
  18. Somali Health Board
  19. SouthEast Effective Development for KVRU 105.7 FM
  20. Tenants Union of Washington State
  21. The Arc of King County
  22. The Central District Forum for Arts & Ideas
  23. The Maternal Coalition
  24. Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle
  25. United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance (UTOPIA)
  26. Villa Comunitaria
  27. Voices of Community Activists and Leaders (VOCAL-WA)
  28. Wa Na Wari
  29. West African Community Council (WACC)
  30. Young Women Empowered

Resilience Funds applications will be reviewed and granted on an annual basis. The 2021 grant cycle opens in the fall. Please email Jonathan Cunningham with any questions. Up-to-date deadlines are on the Resilience Fund section of our grant opportunities page.

Read more about all the grants made from the Resilience Fund:

The first round of the Resilience Fund in the spring of 2017 awarded $565,000 to 33 organizations.

The 2017 fall cycle of the Resilience Fund awarded $371,000 to 24 organizations.

The 2018 spring cycle of Resilience Fund awarded $327,000 to 22 organizations.

The 2018 winter cycle of Resilience Fund awarded $365,000 to 23 organizations.

The 2019 cycle of Resilience Fund granted out $550,000 to 31 organizations.

Find more Resilience Fund updates on our blog.

This post was updated on May 20,2021 to reflect the progress made in support of the Resilience Fund.