Voqal grantmaking is a philanthropic program that promotes social equity in creative and disruptive ways. The program is deeply committed to racial and social justice, investing in leaders, organizations, and movements that are closest to injustice. Many of the organizations we support are focused on community organizing and public policy advocacy. Our grantmaking’s ultimate goal is to build the capacity of communities to win political power and we prioritize funding communities who have traditionally had power used against them. This month we take a look at a grantee that exemplifies these ideas, Nexus Community Partners.
Nexus Community Partners supports strong, equitable, and just communities in which all residents are engaged, are recognized as leaders, and have pathways to opportunities. It believes the key to building more engaged and powerful communities of color lies in the dynamic relationship between authorship, leadership, and ownership. It defines these concepts in the following ways:
Authorship: Engaging Community
In a strong, equitable, and just community, all members are engaged in and have authorship of their lives and their future. Nexus Community Partners builds infrastructure for stronger community engagement learning and practice.
Leadership: Cultivating Power
In a strong, equitable, and just community, all members are seen as leaders, are given ample opportunities to grow in their leadership, and are able to represent their communities in multiple spaces. Nexus Community Partners invests in and cultivates leaders of color who are working to advance a broader agenda for equity.
Ownership: Building Community Wealth
In a strong, equitable, and just community, all members are afforded ample access points to generate wealth and to own the wealth they have helped to generate. Nexus Community Partners challenges practitioners, community leaders, and investors to use a community wealth-building framework to think and act differently about community revitalization in ways that are culturally relevant and promote economic justice.
Nexus Community Partners accomplishes its work through three primary activities. They are:
Through funding and capacity-building support, it builds the capacity of community-based organizations to promote equitable and sustainable community change.
Developing Innovative Initiatives
It leads creative initiatives, such as the Twin Cities Boards and Commissions Leadership Institute and the Community Engagement Institute, that advance equity, build community leadership, and create the infrastructure for community wealth-building.
Aligning and Amplifying Resources
It intentionally connects local wealth-building and community engagement efforts to broader regional and national initiatives. This amplifies investments and creates leadership and economic opportunities in historically disinvested communities.
Nexus Community Partners is also one of the leading partners in the Minnesota Philanthropic Collective to Combat Anti-Blackness and Realize Racial Justice. This coalition of foundations and philanthropic organizations is partnering to denounce anti-blackness and racism in Minnesota. The coalition is engaging in a deep reckoning to build, yield, and share power to elevate the voices of the people most impacted by systemic racism and inequity.
The work of Nexus Community Partners in Minnesota is an integral part of creating a more socially and racially equitable world. Voqal is honored to be able to support it and looks forward to its continued efforts to create opportunity and equity for all.
You can learn more about Nexus Community Partners on their website.