Giving Compass' Take:

• Alyssa Curran argues that equitable grantmaking practices are no longer optional - it is imperative - and offers steps to implement a racial equity lens in grantmaking. 

• Are you ready to adopt a racial equity lens for grantmaking? What shifts can you make to quickly increase equity in your grantmaking? 

• Read more about implementing racially equitable grantmaking

More and more nonprofit professionals are paying attention to the national dialogue and waking up to the fact that racial equity can no longer be a choice in their work. Some of those are in the philanthropic sector and have begun addressing it in their grantmaking. Working and investing in a racially equitable way is a smart and socially responsible way to carry out our business.

Before going into the specifics of grantmaking with a racial equity lens, it is helpful to define the term:

  • Diversity encompasses a demographic mix and perspectives of a specific population of people, taking into account human difference.
  • Inclusion refers to the degree to which diverse individuals are able to use their voice, participate in the decision-making processes within a group, and the amount of power they have within that group.
  • Racial equity is achieved when all people experience situational fairness – when race is not a determining factor in the allocation of societal assets and advantages, such that an individual’s race is not itself a liability or does not create unearned privilege.

GrantCraft’s Grantmaking with a Racial Equity Lens guide provides some strategies and tactics for racially equitable grantmaking even if your foundation hasn’t made a commitment or developed explicit policies and procedures.  Some of these strategies include: understand the racial landscape, talk with grantseekers about racial equity, include and cultivate the leadership of people of color, rethink and redefine “merit”, and assess the impact on disparities.

Other ways to incorporate racial equity into internal operations include creating an advisory council composed of experienced community members to guide the creation policies and procedures, and trying to engage vendors, consultants, staff and board members from racial minorities present in your community whenever possible.

Read the full article about grantmaking with a racial equity lens by Alyssa Curran at PEAK Grantmaking.