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Quantifying Hope: Philanthropic Support for Black Men and Boys

Publication date: 
Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A new report jointly released by Foundation Center and the Campaign for Black Male Achievement shows a distinct trend toward increased U.S. foundation funding for organizations and programs that are working to improve the life outcomes of Black males. Education historically receives the largest share of this support, but giving in other areas, including human services and public affairs, has grown. In addition to analyzing U.S. funding trends, Quantifying Hope: Philanthropic Support for Black Men and Boys describes recent initiatives in the field of Black male achievement.

This timely new research is released against a backdrop of national attention to the highly-publicized killings by law enforcement of Walter Scott, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Tamir Rice, among others; the birth of the #BlackLivesMatter movement; and the launch last year of My Brother's Keeper, a White House initiative to improve the outcomes of boys and young men of color.

"Momentum has been building on many fronts to address social and racial disparities in our nation, and the time is right to keep pushing forward to improve opportunities for Black men and boys," said Shawn Dove, CEO of the Campaign for Black Male Achievement. "The role of philanthropy in those efforts is critical, and this report highlights the organizations and programs that have made meaningful investments in the growing field of Black male achievement. I am encouraged by the progress we've made so far, and yet it's really only the beginning. We still have a long way to go towards achieving our mission of helping organizations committed to this work build their capacity and strengthen their efforts to maximize the assets and potential of America's Black men and boys."

The study finds that in 2012, the latest year for which data are available, 98 foundations made grants worth $64.6 million explicitly designed to benefit Black men and boys. This figure was up from $40.4 million in the previous year and continues an upward trend. More than half of all foundation funding for Black males from 2003 to 2012 was distributed in the latest three years.

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