Published in The Westerly Sun

September 25, 2023

The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut announced the endowment of the Fund for Racial Justice into a permanent Field of Interest fund. The Community Foundation launched the Fund for Racial Justice in 2021 with the purpose of advancing racial equity, supporting organizing and advocacy, and allocating flexible resources to organizations and movements, especially those led by People of Color in Eastern Connecticut. The purpose of this fund is to eliminate racial injustice through a variety of means including community organizing, advocacy, and education.

The inaugural grants of over $200,000 were awarded in 2022 and reached a broad spectrum of organizations across Eastern Connecticut. By creating a permanent fund, the foundation will be able to support this initiative in perpetuity.

At a gathering in June that highlighted several of the grantees of the Fund for Racial Justice, Community Foundation President & CEO Maryam Elahi made the special announcement of the plan to raise a minimum of $1 million for the fund. She also reported that thanks to generous donors in the region, the foundation has already secured $350,000 towards that goal.

“We are deeply committed to working with partners to advance racial justice in our region. Thanks to donors who are completely aligned in values, we hope to reach our goal for building this fund in the coming year,” stated Elahi.

The Community Foundation values collaboration with donors to put philanthropy into action to address the needs, rights and interests of our community in Eastern Connecticut. To join the efforts to create a healthy, thriving, sustainable Eastern Connecticut and to find out more about the Fund for Racial Justice, contact to Director of Development Lauren C. Parda at or 860-442-3572.

In the photo, Discovering Amistad Executive Director Paula Mann-Agnew reports on the 2022 grant her organization received from the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut’s Fund for Racial Justice inaugural grant cycle for the program "Discovering Amistad’s Voices for Change."