FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OAKLAND, Calif., May 23, 2022—East Bay Community Foundation (EBCF) awarded $443,996 in grants to seven nonprofit organizations spearheading COVID-19 education and outreach efforts to increase vaccination rates among Black families with children under 18. Part of the COVID-19 African American Education & Outreach Partnerships, this nationwide initiative will support community-based organizations (CBOs) located in Albany, Ga., Bolton, Miss., Selma, Ala., Los Angeles, and Oakland.
This initiative demonstrates how community foundations can streamline funding from national and private foundations to local CBOs. In the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, moving capital to community organizations leading COVID-19 recovery efforts in Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) communities continues to be essential. These grants were made possible with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
As of May 4, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccination trends by age and sex reports that only 24.7% of children ages 12 to 17 are fully vaccinated. Supporting local community clinics and faith organizations is critical to increasing vaccination and preventing future outbreaks in communities that experienced high infection rates throughout the pandemic.
The seven grant recipients were identified as organizations that (1) provide services in a community with a high percentage of African American families and low vaccination rates, (2) act as a “trusted messenger” for the communities they serve, and/or (3) are a recognized community health clinic or faith organization.
“We are proud to facilitate partnerships that bring much-needed resources to the community-based organizations that have been at the vanguard of the COVID-19 vaccine outreach, education, and distribution,” said EBCF Interim President and CEO Pamela Calloway. “Each of these seven grantees is a trusted messenger in communities most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, their outreach and education efforts are critical to reduce misinformation surrounding the COVID-19 vaccines.”
The grant recipients of the COVID-19 African American Education & Outreach partnership are:
- Allen Temple Baptist Church (Oakland, California)
- Keep the Faith Foundation, Inc. (Bolton, Mississippi)
- Roots Community Health (Oakland, California)
- Rural Health Medical Program Inc. (Selma, Alabama)
- Samaritan Clinic (Albany, Georgia)
- West Oakland Health Council (Oakland, California)
- Watts Healthcare Corporation (Los Angeles, California)
The leaders of four awardee organizations explained how they will use the funds to continue and elevate their outreach and education efforts.
“The story of COVID is more than data. Its true impact and learnings can be found in the faces and lived experiences of those of African descent,” said Dr. Noha Aboleta, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Roots Community Health Center. “We welcome the opportunity this grant provides to elevate and inform more broadly the human toll of the pandemic on an already marginalized community, like East Oakland.”
“Samaritan Clinic is grateful to have the opportunity to further its reach into the community to serve families with children through this continued grant funding. Making connections to create solutions to healthcare inequalities on behalf of grassroots organizations like Samaritan Clinic, is essential and we are grateful to the East Bay Community Foundation and the W. K. Kellogg Foundation for providing the funding,” said Nedra Fortson, Executive Director at Samaritan Clinic. “Seeing the issues beyond your personal experience is what it will take to solve health inequities in communities across the country. Samaritan Clinic is grateful to be a part of networks who get it.”
“Thanks to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and East Bay Community Foundation, Rural Health Medical Program will be able to continue to serve our often ‘forgotten’ communities. Funding will be used towards our outreach efforts on our new mobile healthcare clinic which will allow us to meet people where they are and provide services.” says Keshee Smith, Chief Executive Officer at Rural Health Medical Program, Inc., Nicholson continues, “This partnership will further allow for CBOs to come together and share ideas and strategies on how to best serve families and children.”
Dr. Oliver Brooks, Chief Medical Officer at Watts Healthcare Corporation says, “The grant will strengthen the capacity for Watts Healthcare Corporation as a public health institution, in its response to the health and social needs of families who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
EBCF’s efforts to streamline funding from corporate partners for CBOs serving BIPOC communities started in March 2021. In collaboration with private and government partners, EBCF quickly allocated resources and funding to organizations providing services in disenfranchised communities experiencing the health and economic impacts of the pandemic.
About East Bay Community Foundation
Founded in 1928, East Bay Community Foundation (EBCF) 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 is supported by 600 local donors and has charitable assets under management of over $764 million.
About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal innovator and entrepreneur Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.