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Oakland, December 10, 2020 – The East Bay Community Foundation announced that it has received an unrestricted general support grant for $925,000 from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation as part of Hewlett’s grantmaking commitment to address systemic racism.

In making the grant, the Hewlett Foundation highlighted the East Bay Community Foundation’s work to eliminate structural barriers, advance racial equity, and transform political, social and economic outcomes for people in the East Bay. Hewlett especially noted EBCF’s ASCEND: BLO Initiative, which supports Black-led organizations that serve as the backbone for communities of color throughout the Bay Area.

Earlier in 2020, Hewlett Foundation President Larry Kramer announced that his organization would commit almost $170 million toward racial justice. Last week, the foundation awarded its first set of grants, including its grant to the East Bay Community Foundation. The grants were made to 15 organizations through an inclusive decision-making process that engaged staff across the Hewlett Foundation.

“We are proud to support organizations working across a broad swath of issues—from health to education to human rights—to advance racial justice, fight against anti-Black racism, and amplify the values, aspirations, and power of Black communities,” said Kramer. “The East Bay Community Foundation is an unquestioned leader in this work, and their ASCEND-BLO initiative is a wonderful example of how a community foundation can help ensure the long-term vitality of Black-led organizations and the communities they serve.”

The East Bay Community Foundation launched ASCEND: BLO in 2017 to create space for more funding specifically for Black-Led Organizations. ASCEND: BLO seeks to:Enhance the growth, sustainability, impact, and sense of community among Black-led anchor institutions in the Bay Area in order to ensure the long-term vitality of those organizations and the communities of color they serve.

Apply a fresh, dynamic, and replicable approach to collaborative capacity building that further develops the nonprofit sector with a lens towards race and equity.

“We are deeply grateful to the Hewlett Foundation for this grant, but this not just a huge endorsement of the East Bay Community Foundation,” said foundation President and CEO James Head. “It is also a vote of confidence to our donors who have placed so much faith in our work, as well as our community partners, who are working tirelessly to advance racial justice and racial equity in neighborhoods across the East Bay. We will put this funding to good use by continuing to increase our support for Black-led organizations in the Bay Area.”

About EBCF

Founded in 1928, and supported by over 400 local donors, the East Bay Community Foundation connects donors with community-led movements to eliminate structural barriers, advance racial equity, and create an inclusive, fair, and just East Bay. Recognized as 2019’s “Boldest Community Foundation” by Inside Philanthropy, EBCF is committed to ensuring that all members of our community are treated fairly, with equitable opportunity and outcomes. EBCF has charitable assets under management of over $800 million.

About the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is a nonpartisan, private charitable foundation that advances ideas and supports institutions to promote a better world. For more than 50 years, it has supported efforts to advance education for all, preserve the environment, improve lives and livelihoods in developing countries, promote the health and economic well-being of women, support vibrant performing arts and strengthen Bay Area communities. Its newest program focuses on strengthening U.S. democracy. Learn more: www.hewlett.org