This #GivingTuesday donate to organizations led by people of color

Christopher Paicely
Dec 2, 2019 · 3 min read
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The Surge Institute develops, elevates and unifies emerging leaders of color to transform education for our youth and communities.

I’m tired of being under-resourced, y’all.

“Under-resourced” is an adjective used too often in describing low-income communities of color in the United States. Schools are under-resourced and that becomes the reason to close them.

Organizations are under-resourced and that becomes a reason to label them ineffective.

Humans are under-resourced and that becomes a reason to pity us or even throw us away. Sounds harsh, but it’s both a (rarely) spoken and (most times) unspoken truth.

Know what doesn’t often come up when folks use terms like “under-resourced?” Resourcing! Actually providing resources rather than ending the conversation where it’s convenient.

Here’s an inconvenience: across the board, organizations led by Black and Brown people are overlooked and ignored when it comes to philanthropy, and considering ours are the communities that are most often given that “under-resourced” label, that smells more than a little funny.

So, how do we get resourced?

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Dirrick Butler, Founder of Project OneTen, a nonprofit organization that helps young men of color effectively transition from eighth grade to high school through individualized support work.

There are billions of philanthropic dollars given to nonprofits every year. Billions. Nearly all of that money — an estimated 95% by some accounts–goes directly to organizations run by white people. This is next-level imbalance, and it speaks to a vicious cycle that leaves us fighting ten times harder for the same resources other organizations take for granted.

Edgar Villanueva, author of Decolonizing Wealth, said it best. “If we as a sector are really sincere about equity, and not just diversity but equity, that means that we have to overcompensate and give a boost to those organizations that have not been receiving resources for the past 70 years. We’ve got to make up for lost time.”

At the Surge Institute, my workplace and my passion, we’re working to transform urban education for our youth and communities by helping bring more brilliant people of color to the leadership tables. The programs we develop are game-changing, but we rely heavily on philanthropic support and individual donations to make such programs a reality. As an organization led by a Black woman, Surge has daily conversations about how we can get folks to care enough about our work and our voices to invest in us. It’s not easy raising those funds when the default is to ignore you.

Here’s what we need to do.

Don’t stop giving to Boys and Girls Clubs of America or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Do start also giving to places like Project OneTen or the Latinx Education Collaborative or Urban Ed Academy. This #GivingTuesday pick at least one organization led by a person of color and give. Make a statement about the value of diversity, equity and inclusion with your dollars, no matter how small the donation.

I assure you first hand… your break from the norm will be seen, felt and appreciated.

Here’s a list of just a few organizations to consider.

Please feel free to respond to this post and add organizations I have missed.

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The opinions expressed in this blog posting are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Surge Institute.

Christopher Paicely

Written by

Vice President of Marketing for the Surge Institute, a national movement to empower emerging education leaders of color. https://www.surgeinstitute.org

Surge Institute

The Surge Institute is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the empowerment, advancement, growth, and achievement of youth and communities of color.

Christopher Paicely

Written by

Vice President of Marketing for the Surge Institute, a national movement to empower emerging education leaders of color. https://www.surgeinstitute.org

Surge Institute

The Surge Institute is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the empowerment, advancement, growth, and achievement of youth and communities of color.

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