The West Philadelphia Community Fund is a one-time fund that will make $500,000 in grants to movement organizations in the West Philadelphia community—particularly in and around the 52nd Street Corridor.
What groups are eligible to receive grant funding?
The West Philadelphia Community Fund will make one-time grants to community-based groups in two tracks:
- Community Organizing – Community organizing to create systems change that builds resilience and improves the quality of life in the West Philadelphia community.
- Mental Health and Wellness – Providing culturally responsive, community-based mental health and wellness services in the West Philadelphia community to individuals impacted by the police violence that occurred on May 31, 2020.
The funding for the West Philadelphia Community Fund results from a settlement between the City of Philadelphia and residents of West Philadelphia in two lawsuits (Smith et al. v. City of Philadelphia and Hough et al. v. City of Philadelphia) that challenged the Philadelphia Police Department’s (PPD’s) excessive and unwarranted use of force on May 31, 2020. This fund is intended to promote wellness, build resilience, and improve the quality of life in West Philadelphia, and to support individuals who currently reside in West Philadelphia or who resided in West Philadelphia on May 31, 2020, within the following zip codes: 19131, 19151, 19139, 19104, and 19143.
The West Philadelphia Community Fund will award $300,000 (grants of $15,000) to groups doing community organizing and $200,000 (grants of $20,000) to groups providing mental health and wellness services. Applicants can apply to only ONE track.
Groups must meet these eligibility criteria:
Must be located in Philadelphia and organizing within West Philadelphia (Track 1) or providing mental health and wellness services to residents of West Philadelphia (Track 2). For the purposes of this fund, West Philadelphia is defined as neighborhoods that are west of the Schuylkill River and located within the following zip codes: 19131, 19151, 19139, 19104, 19143.
- Must be designated by the IRS as a 501(c)3 organization or have a fiscal sponsor that is designated by the IRS as a 501(c)3 organization.
- Must be current with all progress reports from previously awarded Bread & Roses grants.
- Must submit a complete application prior to the deadline. Due to the prospective volume of applications we receive, we cannot make exceptions.
- Must apply for a grant in only one of the two tracks: Community Organizing or Mental Health and Wellness.
- Priority will be given to organizations whose leadership is primarily composed of people most affected by the social justice problem or issue that is being addressed, particularly for work that supports: black people, poor people, long-term West Philadelphia residents, and young people.
Track 1 – Community Organizing: Community organizing to create systems change that builds resilience and improves the quality of life in the West Philadelphia community by having a long-term vision for social justice and engaging in strategies that promote sustainable systems change, including:
- A focus on community organizing and activism that aims to shift the balance of power between community members and policy makers to make changes in policies or practices with broad applications at the institutional or systems level.
- A clear understanding of the root causes of the social justice problem or issue that they are working to resolve.
- A vision that emphasizes changing the systems that create or perpetuate the social justice problem or issue being addressed.
- A strategy that includes: 1) building a local base for taking collective action by the community affected by the social justice problem or issue; and 2) results in concrete outcomes in policies or practices in the West Philadelphia community.
- Leadership that is primarily composed of people most affected by the social justice problem or issue that is being addressed.
- Work that is not eligible for this track includes direct service work/social services, self-help/empowerment programs, educational programs, litigation, or advocacy.
Track 2 – Mental Health and Wellness: Providing culturally responsive, community-based mental health and wellness services to individuals regardless of insurance status, who are impacted by the police violence that occurred on May 31, 2020.
- Mental wellness is defined by the Global Wellness Institute as “an internal resource that helps us think, feel, connect and function; it is an active process that helps us to build resilience, grow and flourish. Mental wellness has several dimensions: thinking, feeling, connecting and functioning.”
- Mental health and wellness services may include programs that are wholistic, communal, cultural and spiritual (i.e., healing circles; meditation, mindfulness, & mind-body practices; play, making & creating). This may also include professional wellness services (i.e., licensed individual/group therapy).
The West Philadelphia Community Fund does not support:
- Government agencies, law enforcement, or institutions of higher education
- Public, private, or charter schools
- Capital campaigns or building projects
- Scholarships, fellowships, or grants to individuals
- Political parties, electoral campaigns, or candidates for elected office
- Work that has been completed or occurred prior to the application deadline (this funding is to support current and future initiatives, not work that happened in the past few years)
Who will make decisions about where the grants go?
Bread & Roses convened a community grantmaking committee in the summer of 2023 made up of West Philadelphia community members impacted by the police violence on May 31, 2020. This committee established priorities for the fund and identified eligibility criteria for potential applicants. The community grantmaking committee will review grant applications and make decisions about grant awards. Applicants will be notified in early 2024.
Apply to the West Philadelphia Community Fund
The deadline to apply has passed.
Virtual information session
September 12, 2023 | 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
We covered the process of applying for a grant, including eligibility and requirements.
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