Celebrating the Intersections of Race and Gender

Dear Colleagues,

Today marks the end of Black History Month and the beginning of Women’s History Month in the U.S. Like you, I’m disappointed at the ongoing way our nations fail to celebrate Black women as a whole.

It’s important to acknowledge the unique challenges at the intersection of both racism and sexism. Though Black women are often forced to fight these on different fronts, as if they are different wars altogether, in reality, racism and sexism are just different weapons in the hands of a common enemy: white supremacy.

We know access to capital is one of the most critical missing links to closing the opportunity gaps for Black women. Yet of the $67 billion of charitable donations made by foundations in a single year, less than .02% was specified as benefiting causes that support Black women and girls.

Too often, race is an afterthought in the women’s rights movement, and too often philanthropy ignores gender as a critical intersection in racial equity strategy. We have to do better. We do not live single issue lives. The data is clear: directing dollars into programs led by Black women can create meaningful campaigns for lasting change.

Check out more of my thoughts on this topic—and some of our Network’s trailblazers to watch—in the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

In solidarity,

Elizabeth Signature

Elizabeth Barajas-Román
Women’s Funding Network 
President & CEO

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