Announcing AAPI Giving Circle COVID-19 Response Fund!

Wed, 2020-06-17

AAPIP is pleased to announce our Giving Circle COVID-19 Response Fund. This Fund supports AAPI focused Giving Circle efforts to address immediate economic and health concerns including anti-Asian hate (proactive and reactive responses) while also advancing civic engagement to build community power for the longer term. AAPIP’s Giving Circle Network is anchored in AAPI communities all across the country, activating AAPI community members to support their local communities that often under-funded by mainstream philanthropy. Not only do they provide basic financial support to vital non-profit efforts, giving circles also offer an outlet for education and civic engagement in their communities while cultivating an understanding of philanthropy and giving.

AAPIP is pleased to announce a first round of grants to 10 giving circles that are rallying support for non-profits and community members that have largely been left out of broader relief efforts. These grants supplement the work of giving circles responding to anti-Asian hate, mental health, domestic violence, and other issues deeply impact AAPI communities during the COVID-19 pandemic (particularly women and those who identify as LGBTQ). Taken together, they tell a different and inspiring philanthropic story, reaching into communities often invisible in the larger public narrative around COVID-19. We are grateful for the partnership of The Wallace Foundation and Genentech in helping make this fund possible. 

APIs Rise (Sacramento, CA) Grant amount: $4,000
APIs Rise was formed in 2012 to build and strengthen the next generation of API leadership for the Sacramento Region. A volunteer-run giving circle, members pool their donations and time to provide grants to projects serving the API communities in the Sacramento region. In addition to the grants they have already made during this pandemic, APIs Rise will expand their partnership with the Bulosan Center for Filipino Studies to address anti-Asian hate related to COVID-19. The Center leads the collective Asian American community response network to COVID-19 in the Sacramento Valley through the Asian Pacific Islander Sacramento and Central Valley Resource Network. This network includes local organizations such as Hmong Innovating Politics (civic engagement), My Sister's House (anti-domestic violence), Philippine National Day Association (youth programs), and Empowering Marginalized Asian Communities (social justice organization in Stockton, CA). They also lead the production of research and policy briefs aggregated from county, state and federal sources which includes tracking and reporting racist and xenophobic incidents.

Asian American Impact Fund (NYC) Grant amount: $4,000
Asian American Impact Fund (AAIF) was founded in 2007 to improve the lives of under-resourced Asian American/Pacific Islanders in the tri-state area. They are a small group of Asian American professionals from a wide range of sectors who come together and provide general operating support grants to small and emerging organizations with innovative approaches to solving the API's community’s greatest challenges. In response to COVID-19, AAIF made additional grants to small local organizations and plan to supplement grants to groups such as ThinkChinatown! for advocacy in this community that has been deeply impacted economically by anti-Asian racism and Ugnayan, a Pilipino youth organization that focuses on anti-bullying. Each will address COVID-19 related racism against AAPIs and trans-racism solidarity work, particularly around anti-Black racism.

Asian Mosaic Fund (Philadelphia, PA) Grant amount: $5,000
Asian Mosaic Fund (AMF) was established in 2010 made up of multi-generational supporters committed to advancing the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities in Greater Philadelphia. Currently AMF is actively fundraising with a $75,000 goal toward grants to small business partners that have suffered severe economic losses, largely because of the xenophobia at the onset of the emergence of the pandemic. They will also support organizations working with vulnerable communities like immigrants, women, and LGBTQ. Organizations like the Victim Witness Services of South Philadelphia and Philly Asian Queer have reported continued harassment and are in dire need for funding to continue their much needed services. Lastly, they will fund organizations serving the elderly and the refugee population. Their partners have indicated that it is an extremely difficult time for undocumented AAPI immigrants and the elderly who are out of a job and do not have access to federal stimulus funding.

Building More Philanthropy With Purpose (Minneapolis, MN) Grant amount: $6,000
The BMPP Giving Circle was founded in 2013 and is made up of a group of Asian American immigrant and refugee families who’ve benefited from the generosity of those who’ve come before them, and understand that their role is to lead by example for future generations. With COVID-19 and the profound impact on the local community, particularly those most vulnerable like undocumented people, small business owners, etc., BMPP families decided to provide direct support to mutual aid funds in order to personally reach those most impacted, rather than provide grants to non-profits. After the murder of George Floyd, BMPP now looks to support local organizing work focused on solidarity with the Black community in the Twin Cities. This is aligned with the work that is already taking place over the course of the past several weeks. With Minneapolis as the epi-center of a global movement against anti-Blackness, BMPP will build upon this important effort.

Cherry Blossom Giving Circle (DC Metro area) Grant amount: $5,000
The Cherry Blossom Giving Circle (CBGC) was founded in 2009 to raise funds and awareness to advance the work of DC area nonprofits that support underserved segments of the region’s AAPI communities through strategies including advocacy, healthcare services, to cross-racial exchanges. CBGC plans to provide supplementary funds to the local organizations that are fighting anti-Asian hate related to COVID-19 such as: groups supporting AAPI youth to share their experiences of discrimination and bullying and connect them to the support they need; expanding services at this time beyond survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, to anyone in the AAPI community experiencing stigma, violence and hate crimes as a result of xenophobia, racism and prolonged misinformation surrounding this pandemic; and COVID-19 related advocacy and developing new ways for community members to be connected and avoid isolation.

Devata Giving Circle (Bay Area) Grant amount: $5,000
Devata Giving Circle was founded in 2010 as a vehicle to empower and engage Cambodian (Khmer) Americans in philanthropy. Comprised of Cambodian-American women to advance the leadership and human rights of Cambodian women and girls, they are currently working to call attention to the hate crimes that go unreported in Cambodian-American communities throughout the U.S. They support grantees on educating the elderly population on current events, COVID-19, and anti-hate issues. This includes groups like: Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants (CERI) that provides counseling, Khmer Girls in Action (KGA) and Mekong, that do advocacy and education work.

Hmong Impact Giving Network (Seattle, WA) Grant amount: $8,000
The Hmong Impact Giving Network (HIGN) founded in 2017 as a national network of Hmong giving circles in the US that strives to cultivate Hmong philanthropists, strengthening Hmong nonprofits and investing in collaborative solutions and relationships to tackle their community's social challenges. As a new network, they recently issued their first grant toward supporting mental health activities for Hmong children. HIGN will work with multiple Hmong communities across the US working together because some smaller Hmong communities lack the resources to do this work on their own. They plan to support 5-6 Hmong organizations across the US to work on anti-Asian hate and anti-blackness. They will work together to address these issues at the local level as well as learn to develop resources and/or educational curriculum that can support discussions and build awareness of anti-Asian hate and anti-blackness for all Hmong communities in the US.

Lacuna Giving Circle (Bay Area) Grant amount: $5,000
Lacuna Giving Circle was founded in 2013 with a mission to fill in philanthropic funding gaps toward organizations and leaders serving the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) and LGBTQ+ communities. They provide grants each to organized such as: Survived and Punished; Queer Crescent Healing; and Peacock Rebellion. Now, Lacuna Giving Circle aims to support small AAPI-serving nonprofits doing meaningful and innovative anti-racism work such as Eastside Arts Alliance, Queer Crescent Healing, and Asian Prisoner Support Committee. They will build solidarity with other communities of color, especially the Black community to dismantle racial bias and white supremacy.

Orchid Giving Circle (Dallas, TX) Grant amount: $3,000
The Orchid Giving Circle is an Asian sisterhood that provides grants and fosters philanthropy primarily within and for the North Texas Asian community. It was formed in May 2015 and in October 2019, they awarded grants to 14 organizations working to support the AAPI community in the North Texas region.  Orchid Giving Circle will also be supporting Literacy Achieves to deliver All Have Value campaign, uplifting themes and values such as: vibrancy, inspiration, welcoming, resourcefulness, and motivation. This organization provides English as a second language training to Asian immigrants across Dallas city campuses. The issue of anti-Asian hate will also be folded into their curriculum, volunteer, and staff training to be conducted during the fall and spring semesters of the 2020-2021 school year.

The Dinner Guys (NYC) Grant amount: $5,000
The Dinner Guys formed in 2013 with a focus on AAPI LGBT+ issues. As a small group, they provide grants through nominations rather than an application process. They support local and national AAPI LGBTQ efforts and in the coming cycle, they will partner with NQAPIA, a national federation of LGBTQ Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian and Pacific Islander Organizations. Their constituency faces the severe impact of being vulnerable to COVID19 as a pandemic as well as the subsequent rise in xenophobia and fear driven violence that is targeted at them. To address more mental health support and to further highlight the violence that their community is facing, NQAPIA is launching a new storytelling collection campaign that aims to highlight their narratives in mainstream media and public consciousness. They will be collecting, editing, and broadcasting 10-15 narratives that highlight the deep impact of COVID-19 on the intersections of their community.                                

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