Contact: Maria De La Cruz
(612)270-2307
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, December 9, 2015 – Headwaters Foundation for Justice is launching “the Emergency Fund for Black Lives” to provide grants to Black Lives Matter Minneapolis and Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC). These two groups have inspired, mobilized, and supported hundreds of community members to call out and change police violence against people of color. With an initial goal of $100,000, Headwaters Foundation has already raised over $60,000 by reaching out to individual donors and foundation partners.

On November 15, Jamar Clark, an unarmed 24-year-old black man, was shot and killed by officers from the Minneapolis Police Department. Since that day, Black Lives Matter Minneapolis peacefully occupied the fourth precinct for 18 days, held numerous peaceful protests and community gatherings, survived the shooting of five people by a group of white supremacists, and hosted a Blacksgiving Celebration.

Headwaters recognizes the historic importance of this moment in time and feels compelled to take action and build on the momentum generated by the events of the past few weeks. “We are launching the Emergency Fund for Black Lives, and asking community members to invest in it so that together we can aggressively address the racial inequities that exist in Minnesota,” said Headwaters Executive Director David Nicholson. “By committing to this fund, our community is committing to creating positive change. The fund will provide resources that can be used to dismantle the structural and institutional racism that exists in Minneapolis and throughout our state.”

“With financial support from the community Black Lives Matter Minneapolis and
NOC will be able to deepen our working relationship and expand the black and people of color infrastructure we’ll need to bridge Minnesota’s outrageous racial and economic divide,” said NOC Executive Director Anthony Newby.

Black Lives Matter Minneapolis is supporting emerging leaders to move the work for racial justice forward. “We plan to use the dollars from Headwaters’ Emergency Fund for Black Lives to increase training, capacity-building, and community engagement as we continue to risk everything to call attention to and change the glaring racial disparities in our state,” said Miski Noor, a leader in Black Lives Matter Minneapolis.

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Headwaters Foundation for Justice was established in 1984 by thoughtful donors who built the organization around a grantmaking model that places funding decisions in the hands of the community. For over 30 years, Headwaters has relied on this model of community-led grantmaking to provide over $10 million in financial support and organizational assistance to grassroots organization

Black Lives Matter Minneapolis is a group of Black and allied organizers in Minneapolis, Minnesota working in solidarity with the national Black Lives Matter movement.

Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC) is a grassroots, member-led organization building power in under-resourced communities and communities of color across the Twin Cities. Together, NOC members fight for racial and economic justice. NOC is building powerful, active campaigns for better public transit, workers’ rights, expanded voting rights, and police accountability.