Grantee Spotlight,Philanthropy

A Commitment to Rising Activists & Emerging Leaders

September 7, 2021
By Raymond Jimenez

In support of Liberty Hill’s north star to build power in communities most impacted by systemic oppression to advance equity and justice, this year’s 2021 Fund for Change and Liberty Vote! grants are building on our legacy of supporting emerging organizations at various levels of development by making a commitment to “Rising Activist” organizations across the County.

Along with funding a strong group of longstanding community organizations, this expanded strategy underscores Liberty Hill’s unique focus on “Rising Activist” organizations that have formed within the last 10 years, with annual budgets of less than $500,000, and fewer than three full-time staff members—these partners represent underrepresented communities and geographies with limited existing nonprofit infrastructure.

Liberty Hill shifted outreach strategies, application processes, and assessment tools so that these smaller organizing groups had greater access to funds. Investing in new and growing grassroots organizations in Los Angeles is an investment in building the movement in California and in the nation. Investments in these groups are also particularly critical as low income people of color continue to be displaced from central areas of the County to neighborhoods where fewer institutions exist to advocate for historically oppressed communities.

A crucial part of Liberty Hill’s “Rising Activist” strategy is developing capacity building programs that invest in the sustainability and growth of these partner organizations. As part of the Foundation’s Wally Marks Leadership Institute, organizations will have access to organizational coaching and peer convening intended to focus on sustainability, healing, and long-term organizational impact, as well as other specialized trainings.

We have also partnered with Tres Lunas Consulting, led by Diana Zuniga, to serve as a lead partner in curriculum development and facilitation in this work. Diana brings over a decade of community organizing and activism, fighting for transformative justice as well as experience in developing and leading healing and leadership development for organizations and coalitions.

While Liberty Hill is prioritizing Rising Activist groups, the Foundation remains committed to funding activism at all stages, including through their Liberty Vote! Grantmaking program designed to fuel electoral organizing through 501c4 organizations.

Stay tuned to learn more about our Rising Activist work as we roll out our Rising Activist Series this Fall where we will be highlighting these new partners and their work across the County.

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Rising Activists