Awards Announced for Black Quality of Life Initiative


Funds for organizations committed to improving the quality of life for black people in Marion County have been awarded.

In 2020, after a summer of social justice protests, the Urban League of Indianapolis announced a $100 million donation to the Indianapolis African American Quality of Life Initiative. It seeks to make significant investments in jobs, health, education, business opportunities and housing.

Indianapolis Urban League President Tony Mason said the first round of more than $21 million in grants was targeted.

“To Black-led community organizations and serving Black people to meet the critical needs and solutions facing African Americans in the community,” Mason said.

This first fundraiser will reach 52 local and non-profit organizations. Funding has been awarded to the National Urban League by the Lilly Endowment and a second round of grants will open later this year.

The announcement follows extensive community engagement and feedback to assess needs and opportunities. Mason said it had been a process.

“We are grateful that you have joined us and have been patient with us through this journey so far,” Mason said. “We know our work has only just begun.”

The initiative aims to address years of historic place-based inequity for black Indianapolis residents.

Round 1 funding grants are available to the following organizations:

Category: Technical Skills Development and Employability
Indianapolis Flanner House $250,000
Martin University $250,000
Far East Side Community Alliance (CAFÉ) $250,000
Edna Martin Christian Center (EMCC) $250,000
Local Initiatives Support Society (LISC) $250,000
Fathers and Family Resources Research Center, Inc. $250,000
Ivy Tech Foundation $250,000

Category: Health and wellness: food justice and quality options
Urban Women’s Wellness Center $285,276
Felege Hiywot Center, Inc. $300,000
Indianapolis Flanner House $300,000
Kheprw Institute $300,000

Business and entrepreneurship: capacity building
Indiana Black Expo $300,000
Indy Black Chamber of Commerce $500,000
Kheprw Institute $500,000
She Event Indy, Co. $250,000
Northwest Vision Development Center $150,000

Business and Entrepreneurship: Equity
Edna Martin Christian Center $500,000
Gang Gang $333,800
Indiana Black Expo $200,000
Indy Black Chamber of Commerce $500,000
Flagship venture capital $500,000
Intent Indiana $500,000

Education: Professional Development
Indiana Children’s Policy and Rights Initiative $300,000
Indiana Council on Education for Students of Color $382,206
Indiana Black Expo $50,000
Eclectic Soul VICES Corporation $170,100
Teach Plus Incorporated $400,000

Education: Professional Development & Teacher Recruitment/Retention & Early Childhood
A Learning Bee STEM PreK Academy $200,000
Judah Ministries $400,000
Indianapolis Fresh Starts $236,379
SBC Development Corporation / Life Purpose Academy $400,000

Education: professional development and teacher recruitment/retention
Educate ME Foundation, INC. $399,211
Washington Township Schools MSD $230,000
MelanatED Leaders $60,000

Education: Recruitment and Retention of Teachers of Color
Indiana Black Expo $200,000
Teach for America Indianapolis $40,000
Indiana University Foundation $400,000

Education: Early Childhood Education
Martin University $400,000

Housing and home ownership and economic mobility
Greater Indianapolis Community Action $500,000
NeighborLink Foundation Indianapolis, Inc. $500,000
North East United Community Development Corporation $500,000

Housing and Homeownership: Racial Equity and Housing Development
Eastern Star Church Jewel Human Services Corporation $1,000,000
BUILD (Believers United in Local Development) CBDO $752,000
Westside Community Development Corporation $850,000
Martindale Brightwood Community Development
Company $800,000
Intent Indiana $126,600
North East United Community Development Corporation $500,000
Indianapolis Flanner House $1,000,000
FRFI $1,000,000
Kheprw Institute $1,000,000
Pathway Resource Center, Inc. $1,000,000
Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership $1,000,000

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