Based in the United States
Leah Hunt-Hendrix, President & Managing Director
Braeden Lentz, Operations Director
Billy Wimsatt, Director of Programs & Community Engagement
We envision a world where everyone has enough and where all people, from every walk of life, have the opportunity to flourish. We see economic inequality, climate change, and the perpetuation of racism as devastating crises. And we seek, not simply palliative solutions, but deep, structural transformations that will enable everyone to live with dignity and joy.
Working together, as donors, organizers, artists, entrepreneurs, investors, connectors, and visionaries, we aim to address the deep systemic causes of injustice and inequality by supporting the progressive social movements of our time. We believe in the power of organized people, taking collective action to shape the conditions that affect their lives. And we believe in the power of community. Our aim is to build a community that organizes resources and ideas, in solidarity with movements that are fighting for a world where everyone can thrive.
In the past several years, we have seen dramatic popular uprisings across the globe. From the Arab Spring, to anti-austerity protests in Europe, to Occupy Wall Street and the Movement for Black Lives in the United States, movements have emerged in response to economic and political crises. In 2011, a small group of donors and activists came together to discuss how best to resource these efforts in ways that strengthen underlying infrastructure and capacity.
The goal: to support the transformation of discontent into powerful and strategic social movements for justice.
With an eye toward the future, we draw on history. Today’s challenges are unique, but we have inspirational ancestors who inform our work. Movements that bent the arc of history toward justice in the past –women’s suffrage in the 1800s, the labor movement of the 1920s and 1930s, the civil rights movement of the 1960s – each had quiet individuals behind the scenes, providing support. These donors funded organizing, demonstrations, marches and sit-ins – they wrote checks to assist with legal defense for unjustly prosecuted political prisoners, training, and political education. Ultimately, they saw their role as bringing financial resources to movements that were larger than any one organization or initiative, movements that changed history and shaped the world in which we now live.
|What Makes Us Different:|
Solidaire believes in building deep relationships with and active participation in the efforts that our members support. We engage in three levels of giving: Rapid Response Giving, Pooled Giving, and Aligned Giving. This design enables us to support multiple types of critical movement pieces – from grassroots mobilizations to multi-million dollar movement institutions.
Through our email list and access to a group of well-connected peers, members are able to propose and respond to requests from activists on the ground amidst uprisings and movement moments within a matter of hours. Solidaire members also make an annual $10,000 contribution to a pooled fund housed at Proteus Fund that provides one-time support to timely innovations and new ideas in movement building through a collective learning process among members. Our Aligned Giving effort, which we aim to soft launch in early 2016, will be designed to provide long-term support to collectively defined key elements movement infrastructure – roughly in the amount of $50,000 per participating Solidaire member. By investing in core building blocks over a committed period of time, we believe that donors can help strengthen, align and connect a critical mass of the movement ecosystem around shared vision and strategy.
Supporting black infrastructure is particularly important, given how racism plays such a central role in destroying communities and destroying lives. Now more than ever is the time to really focus on addressing racism in America, as a core aspect of what keeps us divided. More specifically, we need to support both the grassroots activism and the long-term infrastructure and anchor institutions that will sustain the movement and lead it to significant victories.
For example, Solidaire has contributed $205,790 to the Movement for Black Lives to since August, 2014. Since the Ferguson uprising began in the Summer of 2014, Solidaire responded through our Rapid Response Giving to organizers and strategists on the ground in Ferguson ($22,440) and later to Baltimore ($18,850) within a matter of days. Through our Pooled Giving Solidaire contributed to Blackbird Grant ($30,000 - December 2014), a cluster of Ferguson organizations ($20,000 - December 2014), Black Lives Matter ($20,000 - June 2015), and the Movement for Black Lives Convening ($40,000 - June 2015). In the Movement for Black Lives for example, there are a few key institutions that have emerged as anchors - they are developing and lifting up transformational leadership, building and connecting networks nationally and locally, providing space, and managing tables and convening to align and sharpen shared strategy and clearer divisions of labor within the movement. The beginning of our Aligned Giving as included contributions of $10,000 each to Blackbird and Black Lives Matter and $34,500 to elements of the Movement for Black Lives Convening and we are exploring how to support an expanded portfolio of Black movement infrastructure going forward.
Bolder Giving does not endorse any specific Giving Community and provides this listing for information only.