Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo

Local Initiative Connects Communities of Color to Giving Back Through New Programs

Jun 27, 2016 | Posted in News

Buffalo, NY – The Communities of Giving Legacy Initiative (CGLI), an initiative that aims to expand access to philanthropy in communities of color, announced two new programs to connect local Buffalo-Niagara philanthropic organizations and individuals of color. Through collaborative partnerships and funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the new programs developed by the CGLI are the Philanthropies of Color Network and The Young Philanthropists. The two new programs will work with a re-energized Emerging Philanthropists of Color (EPC) to bridge communities of color to emerging opportunities in Western New York.

“The CGLI works with community groups to cultivate positive change in the lives of youth of color living within Western New York via access to people, places and experiences,” said CGLI Director, Landrum Beard. “As our region experiences an economic resurgence, we want to give youth of color every opportunity to be trailblazers and take advantage of new opportunities. Diversity is a strength of our region and to continue moving our region forward, we must work together with an intentional focus on equity.”

All three programs will collaboratively provide the knowledge and tools needed to empower and advance the work of organizations and individuals who help enrich the lives of youth of color.

The Philanthropies of Color Network

The CGLI convened 11 local organizations that serve youth of color to form The Philanthropies of Color Network. Through this program, these organizations will work together to share knowledge and resources in order to better address the challenges facing the communities they serve.

Member organizations of The Philanthropies of Color Network include:

  • The Belle Center
  • Buffalo Center for Arts and Technology
  • Burmese Community Support Center
  • Buffalo Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
  • Buffalo Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
  • Hispanic Heritage Council of Western New York, Inc.
  • Massachusetts Avenue Project
  • Minority Bar Association of Western New York Foundation
  • The Miss Borinquen of Western New York
  • Native American Community Services of Western New York
  • Somali Bantu Community Organization of Buffalo

Each member organization of The Network aspires to empower, support and provide youth of color with access to increasing opportunities in the region.

The Young Philanthropists

To teach high school aged students of color about philanthropy, The Young Philanthropists was developed in early March to train a group of Buffalo Public School students on the critical components of philanthropy and giving back to their community. The Young Philanthropist members were connected with The Philanthropies of Color Network to learn best practices in grant making through a hands-on learning opportunity to award a grant.

Based upon what was learned, The Young Philanthropists awarded $1,500 grants to the following organizations of The Philanthropies of Color Network:

  • Buffalo Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
  • Massachusetts Avenue Project
  • Minority Bar Association of Western New York Foundation

Emerging Philanthropists of Color

To continue philanthropic education as young adults transition to young professionals, the CGLI’s Emerging Philanthropists of Color (EPC) is designed to introduce aspiring philanthropists to collaborative giving. EPC offers a group setting for mentoring and networking, an opportunity for one-on-one meetings and philanthropic inspiration.

Yearly contributions from each member are pooled together to provide annual grants to youth-serving nonprofit organizations in Buffalo, Lackawanna and Niagara Falls. The annual contribution for participation is $300. EPC is currently accepting new members as it gets ready to start an annual competitive grant process in late-September 2016. The final grant decisions will be made during the CGLI’s annual signature event – the Pay It Forward Awards in mid-November 2016.

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