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Racial Equity Community Fund

Applications Open: September 28, 2020-November 6, 2020.

All applications must be submitted online at eCImpact
Download RFP
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The United Way envisions a just, equitable and inclusive community for residents of all racial and ethnic backgrounds. Today, however, we are falling devastatingly short in providing equitable opportunities for Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) in our county. For example, according to the 2017 Douglas County Health Assessment, only white respondents felt that “our community values diversity, equity and inclusion” was a community strength. It is not just in terms of perception, however. BIPOC Douglas County residents face racist disparities in health, education, income, housing, and safety. 

According to the 2018 Douglas County Health Assessment, in our county:
• there is a more than two-fold difference in the percent of Black babies born with low-weight at 13.7% - over every other race and ethnicity at 6.8%.
• the majority of Black children are living in poverty -- 72.1% of African-American children live at or below the FPL, which itself is low at ~$25,000 for a family of 4, as opposed to 11.5% of white children.
• the Latinx population shows statistically significant higher rates of unemployment (10.7%) compared to both whites (4.6%) and Douglas County (4.9%).
• Black males and Native American males have the lowest graduation rates in Douglas County (74.2% and 68.4%, respectively), with an average graduation rate of 83.8%

These disparities are a result of systemic racism that is perpetuated intentionally and unintentionally through institutions, culture, and individuals. In our fight to end poverty, the United Way has taken a stand to not do “business as usual” if it perpetuates racial or other forms of inequities. We are actively walking in the opposite direction on that conveyer belt, and invite you to walk or roll along with us towards justice and liberation for all people.

The United Way believes in the power of the people to make change happen! Traditional funding models have resulted in systemic inequities in resource capacity for organizations led by Black, Indigenous, People of Color, deepening disparities in those communities. The goal of this fund is to support initiatives working to advance racial equity in health, education, income, housing, food, and safety. Our bold goal is that local community-led initiatives will have full capacity to disrupt systemic racism and cultivate the conditions for full and equitable opportunities for Black, Indigenous, People of Color in Douglas County to participate and prosper.

Funds will be invested in grassroots and/or community nonprofit organizations in Douglas County, KS with projects focused on increasing equity and opportunities for local BIPOC communities. These grants provide support for organizations whose work benefits people with low incomes, communities of color, and historically and/or systematically marginalized people.

Priority will be given to organizations:
• led by (executive leadership, board) Black, Indigenous, People of Color
• with organizational mission and goals focused on elevating and increasing equity for Black, Indigenous, People of Color
• leading policy and advocacy efforts that include power-building with and for BIPOC communities
• taking a multi-generational approach that priorities youth and families
• aligning with United Way’s mission of ending poverty, facilitated by equitable access to quality education, healthcare, jobs, housing, food, and community engagement

Ineligible for funding:
• Organizations with budgets over $500,000
• Organizations with less than 25% BIPOC executive leaders and board members
• Government programs
• Other foundations or granting programs
• Public, private, or charter schools
• College or university programs
• Businesses or business associations

Applicants may be selected to receive between $500 and $5,000 in funding. Applicants are encouraged to include overhead/operation costs, up to 50%, in the requests. Funding begins January 2021. Projects must take place between Jan.1-June 30, 2021.

The priority population for these funds are Black, Indigenous, People of Color living in Douglas County, KS. At least 75% of people served through the Racial Equity Community Fund should identify as Black/African American, Indigenous/Native, Asian Pacific Islander, Chican@/Latinx, Middle Eastern, and/or People of Color.

Priority will be given to projects that focus on the intersections of BIPOC identities, bringing those systemically pushed to the margins to the center of the project. The highest priority will be given to projects focused on the intersections of racism and poverty.

The eligible activity categories for funding are Direct Supports, Advocacy, and Community Building. Please see the RFP for specific funding goals and activities. 


All applications and must be submitted online through E-CImpact.

  • Current United Way Community Impact Partners may log in to E-CImpact using their normal credentials.
  • New agencies must create an account using the "New to E-CImpact" link at the bottom of the home page. New organizations will be asked pre-qualification questions, and if eligible, will be able to create an E-CImpact account and submit the proposal.

    Instructions on registering a new agency and submitting a grant application through E-CImpact can be found in the Agency Site Manual. You may download the manual by clicking hereor on the image below.

    Applications are due November 6, 2020