Just days after announcing $5.65 million in awards through the Equitable Development Initiative (EDI) to community organizations for projects and programs that respond to displacement pressures, Mayor Jenny A. Durkan today awarded an additional $1.77 million to groups that are supporting communities of color and small businesses responding to the devastating economic dislocation caused by the COVID-19 global pandemic.
The EDI fund, administered by the Office of Planning and Community Development (OPCD), was created to respond to the needs of marginalized populations, reduce disparities, and support access to opportunity in healthy, vibrant communities. The initiative is championed by community organizations concerned about displacement pressures and historical lack of investment that has occurred in communities of color in Seattle. Mayor Durkan proposed a sustained funding source for the program in 2019.
EDI fosters community leadership and supports organizations to promote equitable access to jobs, education and childcare, outdoor space and recreation, cultural expression, healthy food, and other community needs and amenities. These partnerships are designed to support leadership and build capacity building among the most historically marginalized groups in Seattle, sharing in decision-making and power, and working towards racial equity outcomes that allows all communities to thrive.
This year, the City is also awarding funds for COVID-19 relief and response to organizations working in communities of color to respond to the global pandemic and resulting economic disaster. The following 36 organizations are receiving one-time awards of up to $50,000 to support community-based responses to the current public health emergency:
|ORGANIZATIONS FUNDED||SERVICES PROVIDED|
|ACED||Artist Income Supports|
|AlefBa Group||Community Center Feasibility|
|Backpack Academy||Youth STEM Education|
|Beacon Hill Council||Site Feasibility|
|Black Star Farmers||Environmental Justice|
|Central Area Collaborative||Job Training/Apprenticeship|
|Chinese Information Service Center||Anti-Hate Crime Support|
|Cultivate South Park||Community Organizing|
|Denkyem Coop||Financing for Entrepreneurs|
|Dominican Association of WA||Small Business Supports|
|Equity Alliance of Washington||Affordable Commercial Space|
|Eritrean Association of Greater Seattle||Youth Leadership Development|
|Freedom Project||Re-Entry Covid-19 Support|
|Garfield Superblock||Site Feasibility|
|Gathering Roots||Health and Wellness Programs|
|Horn of Africa||Childcare Infrastructure|
|I Do This For You||Senior Meals|
|Khmer Community of Seattle/King County||Community Center Feasibility|
|Kwanzaa Preparatory Academy||Digital Literacy|
|Langston Center||Artist Income Supports|
|Muslim Housing Services||Housing Supports|
|Nehemiah Initiative||Site Feasibility|
|Nurturing Roots||Environmental Justice and Site Feasibility|
|Paradise Avenue Souf||Youth Leadership and Artist Support|
|Rainier Avenue Radio||Civic Infrastructure and Site Feasibility|
|Rainier Valley Food Bank||Food Access|
|Real Time Human Services||Varied Social Services|
|Rooted ReEntry Collective||Re-Entry Covid-19 Support|
|S2||Networked Support System|
|Somali Health Board||Site Feasibility|
|Tenant’s Union||Eviction Response and Tenant Organizing|
|Tiny Art House Community||Artist Supports|
|Union Cultural Center||Health and Wellness|
|Urban Impact||Financing for Business|
|Wa Na Wari||Site Feasibility and Artists Support|
The previously announced $5.65 million in EDI awards to community-based organizations responding to displacement pressures was for site acquisition, major capital projects, and organizational capacity building.
The Office of Planning and Community Development is currently seeking representatives for a new permanent EDI Advisory Board grounded in community to provide ongoing guidance for the initiative and provide input on future funding decisions. Applications are currently being accepted through Nov. 30, 2020. An interim board provided recommendations on the awards announced today.
Since November 2016, OPCD and partner departments, including Office of Economic Development (OED), Office of Housing (OH), Department of Neighborhoods (DON), Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS), and Office for Civil Rights (OCR), have coordinated the administration of the EDI Fund. Successful applicants must demonstrate a deep relationship with the community they are seeking to serve and feature an inclusive community process, with community members serving in their organizational leadership.