Hartford Foundation Announces More Than $400,000 in Grants to Support Efforts to Dismantle Structural Racism and Achieve Equity in Social and Economic Mobility

The Foundation’s Access Grants awarded more than $1.8 million to 52 nonprofits in less than 2 years. 

In 2021, the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving launched Access Grants to support nonprofits aligned with its strategic priorities to dismantle structural racism and increase social and economic mobility for Black and Latinx residents of Greater Hartford. Over the course of the first three rounds of funding, the Foundation awarded more than $1.4 million to 41 organizations. Today, the Foundation announced a fourth round of Access Grants, totaling nearly $420,000 to eleven nonprofits.

“We welcome new approaches and new partners whose work contributes to our strategic goals,” said Hartford Foundation Direct of Community Impact Grantmaking Megan Burke. “Access Grants are one way the Foundation seeks to identify these approaches and partners and to gather input from the community. The grants recommended here all offered a strong articulation of how their proposed efforts would make a significant contribution to dismantling structural racism in Greater Hartford.”

In this round of Access Grants, Foundation staff reviewed 59 requests of up to $50,000, for work to be carried out over one year. The eleven grants awarded include four proposals to increase access to healthcare for residents of color and immigrants in Hartford. Each of these projects recognizes the barriers these populations are facing and offers solutions to address those barriers. Three projects would increase civic engagement among Greater Hartford residents.

Access Grants are designed to identify and support nonprofits which may be new partners of the Foundation or unfamiliar with Foundation procedures. Of the 52 grants awarded over the past two years, eleven went to grantees which had never before received a grant from the Foundation. To increase accessibility for this grant opportunity, staff have held virtual information sessions, developed a “Frequently Asked Questions” information sheet, and provided numerous one-on-one consultations with nonprofit leaders as they complete applications. In between grant rounds in each of the past two years, applicants who were not successful in the first round were invited to receive staff feedback and to update their application for consideration in the second round.

Recognizing that BIPOC-led and serving nonprofits have historically been under resourced, the Foundation has made the choice to prioritize requests from organizations that are BIPOC-led, particularly for efforts that primarily serve communities of color. Sixty percent of the Access Grants awarded over the past two years have gone to organizations led by people of color and whose staff and leadership reflect the communities they serve.

The eleven grants awarded today include:

Organization Name Project Description Amount Awarded
Connecticut Association of School Based Health Centers The Year of Education: Bring together local community-based behavioral health services with pediatric clinics and schools to enhance access to care for school-aged children. $25,000
Hartford Parent University, Inc. Transforming Hartford Education One Parent at Time: HPU will partner with eight Hartford schools to engage parents in their children's education and their own learning.  $25,000
Hartford International University (formerly Hartford Seminary) The John Lewis Institute for Public Leadership:  Training for up to 50 Hartford residents to learn how the political system works, how they can effect significant change, and to commit to civic activism. Primary outreach through Black-led churches in Hartford. $38,027
Hartford Youth Scholars Foundation Core support to advance their mission to work with Hartford students – beginning when they are in middle school – to help them get “to and through” college.  $50,000
Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services Family Literacy Program: Implement Family Literacy Program for recently-resettled refugee mothers with preschool age children who are in need of support for  ESOL classes in Hartford.  $50,000
InterCommunity, Inc. WE CARE at InterCommunity:  Expand a multi-pronged, agency-wide approach to foster accessibility of healthcare services for all members of the Greater Hartford community, regardless of race, ethnicity, or language.  $50,000
International Gospel Fellowship Dismantling Systemic Racism: A series of 12 mental health-focused workshops over the course of a year, with outreach through congregants and beyond. $31,700
Make the Road Connecticut Mi Vida, Mi Salud: Uplifting Immigrant Voices for Health Equity: Campaign will seek to reduce health disparities in the immigrant, Latinx, and working class communities in Hartford through community organizing and popular education. $20,000
My People Community Services Positive Community Development: Close the gap between the need for mental health and therapeutic supports and access to culturally competent services, including individual and family therapy. $50,000
New England Air Museum The Tuskegee Airmen: Their Untold Stories: Open a new, permanent exhibit in the museum honoring the Tuskegee Airmen, with a planned opening in February, 2023, with a mobile theater providing free programming to Hartford area schools.  $50,000
Noah Webster House Addressing the legacy of discrimination: making slavery and freedom part of local colonial stories: Working with historical societies to shift narratives of town histories, update town/church records, and devise action plans to share an inclusive and truthful history. $30,125

The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving is the community foundation for Hartford and 28 surrounding towns. Through partnerships, the Foundation seeks to strengthen communities in Greater Hartford by putting philanthropy in action to dismantle structural racism and achieve equity in social and economic mobility. Made possible by the gifts of generous individuals, families and organizations, the Foundation has awarded grants of more than $894 million since its founding in 1925. For more information, visit
www.hfpg.org or call 860-548-1888.