About

Rectangular banner with a light blue background of radiating rays. Text in the middle reads Fund 4 the Frontlines Campaign Breakdown 2016-2021

 

Image of one pager breaking down the Fund 4 the Fronlines campaign. Text includes origins of the campaign and a timeline. Text is available below.
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“What is the audacious vision or goal that will not only help us through these next four years, but really build on the movement that’s already started?”

Ubax Gardheere, F4tF Public Phase Committee Member

 

 

 

Campaign Origins

In 2018, Social Justice Fund NW launched Fund 4 the Frontlines (F4tF), an ambitious fundraising campaign with a singular focus: to level-up our region’s grassroots organizing by resourcing powerful, long term basebuilding for people at the frontlines of struggle.

The response from our members in the initial phase was huge. By early 2020, we had raised enough toward our goal to make the first round of $250,000 basebuilding grants to six brilliant grassroots organizations, all helmed by leaders who are Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). We decided to increase our goal with an extra $500,000 dedicated to grantmaking, and deepened accountability by recruiting a BIPOC-led committee of community members who guided and sharpened the work.

F4tF has allowed us to resource some of the most transformative organizing in our region, helped SJF and our abilities grow in a time of transition, and brought together community leaders with insight, passion, and the vision to make this campaign truly special.

 

Campaign Timeline

 

Image description: Image depicting the campaign timeline. Brief descriptions of significant events in the timeline are displayed in order on a snaking red line. In order: 2016: F4tF dreamt up at SJF board and staff retreat. Campaign goal set at $4 million; 2018: Campaign has a soft launch at SJF’s 40th Anniversary Celebration; 2018-19: Quiet Phase of F4tF fundraising; Early 2020: $4 million goal is nearly reached! Goal raised to $4.5 million; Spring 2020: Public Phase Committee of nine SJF community members forms; Summer 2020: First 6 F4tF Basebuilding grants are awarded; Fall 2020: F4tF Public Phase is launched at SJF’s annual celebration; Spring 2021: $4,500,000 raise = 10 $250,000, 5-year grants; Summer 2021: Collecting final donations and pledge payments; Fall 2021: Second round of F4tF Basebuilding grants will be awarded

 

Final Donor Pyramid

Image depicting the final donor pyramid. A pyramid made up of nine levels of red orange yellow and blue repeating stripes. Each stripe is aligned with a giving level and number of donors

Image description: A picture depicting the final donor pyramid. 9 repeating red, orange, yellow, and blue stripes form a pyramid. Aligned next to each stripe is a giving level and number of donors, descending from large to small donations. In order: 1 donation of $400,000; 5 donations between $200-300,000; 11 donations between $100-199,000; 17 donations between $25-99,000; 26 donations between $10-24,999; 32 donations between $2-9999; 67 donations between $500-1999; 77 donations between $100-499; 77 donations between $100-499; 35 donations under $100

History

In the wake of the 2016 presidential election, SJF staff and board came together to assess our ability to resource the grassroots movement for social justice in response to an emboldened and growing American far-right.

We knew our grantees were already doing incredible work, but often lacked the financial resources to share skills, grow leadership, and scale up their organizations to not only meet community needs, but build lasting power to maintain victories and change culture for the long term.

Picture of Ubax Gardheere. A Black woman wearing a turquoise headscarf and speaking animatedly into a microphone with a yellow background.
Fund 4 the Frontlines committee member Ubax Gardheere

Stronger movements need more resources. Unfortunately for small, determined organizations, day-to-day survival often competes with their vision for liberation. SJF’s standard level of grantmaking —$15,000 per year, for two years — is essential to help organizers maintain their ongoing level of engagement, but our movements require a much bigger investment to reach the next level.

It’s not enough for SJF to simply move money within an oppressive system. To support our grantees and transform the world around us, we need to educate and grow our donor base, and make sure our own work evolves to keep pace with the movements we resource.

Fund 4 the Frontlines was created with this vision. We launched the campaign in 2018 with a goal of $4 million: $2 million for grantmaking and $2 million to grow SJF’s capacity and donor organizing base. Initial funds were raised from a small group of long-time donors. By early 2020, we had nearly reached that goal.

Final Phase

Square graphic featuring pictures of Fund 4 the Frontlines grantees UTOPIA marching with a Trans Pride sign, WA-BLOC participating in a panel discussion, and PCUN giving a speech in front of a colorful mural. The pictures are surrounded by a blue, yellow, and red background with a light text overlay in corresponding colors reading "equity base justice power," repeated. The Fund 4 the Frontlines logo is in the bottom right hand corner.
Graphic announcing the 2020 F4tF grantees

As the events of the past two years unfolded, we more plainly understood the impact F4tF could have on grassroots organizing, both as a resource and as an opportunity to engage people newer to the movement. We decided to increase our goal with an extra $500,000 completely dedicated to grantmaking, increase the number of small gifts, and deepen accountability by recruiting an all Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) led committee of community members.

Now, F4tF stands out as the only campaign of its kind in our region. In a field where power belongs to white, wealthy donors with virtually no accountability to BIPOC and other communities most impacted by systemic oppression, F4tF is rooted in community and committed to undoing white supremacy in philanthropy.

We announced the first six recipients of the Fund 4 the Frontlines Basebuilding grant in May of 2020. Applications for the final four grants will be announced in 2021. 

Basebuilding

Basebuilding means growing the breadth and depth of people who share a vision and who develop the strategies and work to make that vision a reality. It means building collective power, enough to win shifts in policy and culture and to defend those wins. It means not just bringing people together for a march or rally, but holding people together as a community of leaders. Not just for a day or a presidential term, but for years to come.

 

Characteristics of basebuilding

 

Square image with transparent background. Image of a Black nonbinary person wearing a red collared shirt and speaking while holding up their right hand is pictured. They emerge from a blue red and yellow disc with a glowing background.

 

 

Communities most impacted by the issue at hand lead the work, are centered in decision making, and have broad power within the movement

 

 

Square image with transparent background. A not great illustration of a group of mostly Black youth standing together in a group looking cheerful and having fun. One youth holds a basketball. They are all wearing a combination of yellow blue and red in various shades.

 

 

Organizers use a set of different tactics to engage and build relationships with a broad swathe of their community

 

 

 

Square image with transparent background. Brown hands emerge from a radiating disc of yellow blue and red with a glowing background. The hands are together and reaching out as if to offer or receive something.

 

 

Organizations provide regular community opportunities for political education and skill building

 

 

Square image with transparent background. Several outlines of red blue and yellow bubbles are pictured. In one large bubble to the left of the image is a brown man wearing a yellow shirt looking thoughtful. There question marks in some of other other bubbles.

 

 

Organizations emphasize leadership development and support emerging leaders by helping them find their place in the movement

 

Square image with transparent background. A black silhouette of two people on top of a gradient going from teal to red to caramel is pictured. One person is holding out their hand to the other to help them climb the structure they are standing on.

 

 

Organizations have strong practices in place to maintain accountability to the communities they serve

The Public Phase Committee

As the events of 2018-2020 unfolded, we more plainly understood the impact F4tF could have on grassroots organizing — both as a resource and as an opportunity to engage people newer to the movement. We decided to raise our goal an extra $500,000 completely dedicated to grantmaking, increase the number of small gifts, and deepen accountability by recruiting an all Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) led committee of community members, some of them long-time SJF supporters and some new to our work.

In the spring of 2020 we convened our F4tF Public Phase Committee. This group of nine came together to oversee the final phase of the campaign, with the support of Palmira Figueroa, the Campaign Manager, and mano (Emanuel da Silva), the Donor Organizing Manager.

The Committee helped plan and put into practice the public phase of the campaign by creating strategies, developing materials, organizing events and cultivating donors and volunteers. They were the connectors, ambassadors, solicitors, and advocates for the last year of our campaign. Most remarkably, the Public Phase Committee did this all during the COVID-19 pandemic when it wasn’t possible to meet people or organize in-person events.

This final phase was perhaps the most unique part of F4tF, challenging the common practices of traditional capital campaigns which typically rely on staff and consultants to do the planning and fundraising. Incorporating community leadership brought greater accountability, perspectives, and grounding to the campaign. By the same token, the F4tF Basebuilding Grantmaking Committee was also made up of organizers and leaders from SJF’s community. We are so grateful for their contributions!

Rectangular image with yellow background displaying 11 illustrations of Fund 4 the Frontlines committee members and two SJF staff members. Black text includes their names.

Image description: Rectangular image with light yellow background depicting 11 illustrations of Fund 4 the Frontlines Public Phase Committee members and two SJF staff members. From left to right, Allister Byrd, Andriana Alexis, Brenetta Ward, Carolanne Sanders, JeeYoung Dobbs, Joaquin Uy, Keiko Kozumi, Margo Huang, Ubax Gardheere, mano, Palmira Figueroa

Grantees

The first Fund 4 the Frontlines basebuilding grants were announced in May of 2020. Grant decisions were made democratically by a group of community members. We’re proud to support the basebuilding work of these organizations.

 

Image of PCUN organizers standing together in a group in front of a bright mural depicting Latine farm workers. They are holding pamphlets and looking into the camera.Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN) | Woodburn, OR

Since 1985, PCUN has worked to give Latinx communities tools to influence policy in ways that will improve their lives for the better through community building, political action and grassroots political advocacy, and union organizing.

 

 

 

Image of PAALF members and other community at an art opening for the Albina Queens photo projectPortland African American Leadership Forum (PAALF) | Portland, OR

PAALF helps Black community imagine the alternatives they deserve and builds their civic participation and leadership to achieve those alternatives. They envision a world where people of African descent enjoy the rights, resources, and recognition to be a thriving, resilient, and connected community.

 

 

Image of UTOPI members marching at a pride parade holding a UTOPIA banner with their fists raised.United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance (UTOPIA) | Kent, WA

UTOPIA is a queer and trans people of color-led, grassroots organization born out of the struggles, challenges, strength, and resilience of the Queer and Trans Pacific Islander community in South King County. UTOPIA provides sacred spaces to strengthen the minds and bodies of queer and trans Pacific Islanders (QTPI) through community organizing, community care, civic engagement, and cultural stewardship.

 

 

 

Village of Hope logo featuring a gold heart outline with gold and black silhouettes of people holding hands inside of itVillage of Hope | Seattle, WA

Village of Hope organizes with Black families and communities to reclaim history as a strategy for moving families and communities towards wholeness and health and creating communities where everyone is thriving.

 

Picture of WA BLOC staff sitting together on some stairs looking happy in community.Washington Building Leaders of Change (WA-BLOC) | Seattle, WA

WA-BLOC seeks to transform culture and space at Rainier Beach High School (RBHS) and in South Seattle by building intergenerational place-based leaders of change to disrupt educationally embedded systemic racism for the purpose of dismantling the school to prison pipeline.

 

 

 

 

 

WAISN logo featuring two illustrated hands clasped in front of a green circle with a blue outline. Blue text reads Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network.Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN) | Burien, WA

WAISN is a grassroots coalition made up of nearly 100 immigrant and refugee rights organizations and individuals in Washington. WAISN’s mission is to protect and empower communities by providing support, capacity and resources to build power and a united voice in Washington, establishing tools to resist anti-immigrant and anti-refugee activities, and galvanizing communities for mobilization and collective action.

FAQ

How much money will go to grantees and how much will go to SJF?

$2.5 million is allocated for ten basebuilding grants of $250,000 total, to be distributed at $50,000 per year for five years. As of May 2020, six grants of this size have been made — click here to read more about the grantees.

$2 million is allocated for Social Justice Fund NW’s capacity building. This money is already going toward things like: deepening our work to eradicate anti-Blackness; transitioning to a new donor database; upgrading our accounting systems; increasing our educational workshops and events; expanding communications capacity; and more.

What happens with the money if you raise more than the $4.5 million goal?

Any funds beyond the $4.5 million goal will go towards grantmaking, specifically adding additional basebuilding grants or augmenting existing ones.

How are grant decisions made?

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How can I make a donation?

Thank you for supporting Fund 4 the Frontlines! Click here to make a gift.

For gifts over $1000 we encourage you to donate using the “direct debit” feature under “Payment options” on the form, thereby minimizing fees and making your donation go further.

You can also send a check with “Fund 4 the Frontlines” in the memo to 1904 3rd Ave. Suite 806 | Seattle, Wa. 98101.

Can I donate stock? Can I donate through a Donor Advised Fund?

Yes! For donor advised fund you can pass on the information above for check donations to your DAF holder (Seattle Foundation, Impact Assets, Fidelity, Schwab, etc.)

For stock donations please contact our development director Burke Stansbury at burke@socialjusticefund.org or 206-624-4081 x105