In the late 1980’s, my parents, Barbara and Mort Mandel, directed funds for my brother, sister and I to use philanthropically. These funds are held within their foundation, The Barbara and Morton Mandel Family Foundation, and are renewed annually.  My fund is now called the Amy Mandel and Katina Rodis Fund (AMKRF). Generally, 75 percent of the AMKRF’s funds comes from my parent’s foundation, while 25 percent comes from my personal trust.

In AMKRF’s first years, grants were made largely to non-profit organizations that worked toward equality and equity for LGBTQ people and to progressive Jewish organizations that worked toward social justice.

Over the past six years, as my analysis around racial justice has deepened, it became more obvious to me that there can be no justice without racial justice and that efforts toward reform within this system are just not enough. I’ve also grown to understand how difficult and time consuming it is for the small grassroots organizations and individual change makers who are so indispensable to social justice movements to find adequate funding to sustain their work.

Currently, our work focuses on fortifying non-profit and grassroots organizations and activists working in three major areas: LGBTQ Rights, Racial Justice, and Combating Anti-Semitism. Increasingly, the fund’s grantmaking supports work in Asheville and the surrounding region.

In 2017, we also made the decision to pause our programming to build and deepen our analysis as a team and to refine, clarify and add to my vision so that it is our vision – one that matches the realities faced by our community and one that the team can easily hold and develop.

Read the full article about promoting equity in philanthropy by Amy Mandel at National Center for Family Philanthropy