Investing in the Visionary Leadership of Black Migrants through the Black Migrant Power Fund
Dear friends and colleagues,
In early 2022, 13 Black migrant organizations in partnership with Four Freedoms Fund launched the Black Migrant Power Fund (BMPF) in response to Border Patrol’s horrifying attacks on Haitian migrants in Del Rio, TX. As we heard migrants’ first-hand accounts and bore witness to footage of the agency’s disgusting abuse of power, we understood that this moment would require the leadership of Black migrant organizations to change the unjust and discriminatory systems that allowed this atrocity to take place. Together, we urged funders to invest in Black migrant groups in order to meet urgent community needs, secure broad systemic change, and build lasting power for Black migrant communities leading the movements for migrant and racial justice.
It has been so gratifying to see our funder partners heed community leaders’ call to action and invest nearly $4 million in the Black Migrant Power Fund. My colleagues at the Four Freedoms Fund and I are proud to have partnered with the BMPF’s community partners to raise these much-needed resources and we are deeply grateful to our funder partners for joining and seeding this community-led fund.
This Fall, the Black Migrant Power Fund started to move these investments directly to Black migrant communities, starting with a total of $1.3 million in unrestricted grants to our founding community partners, without whom none of this would be possible.
As Black migrant groups become the fastest growing immigrant group in the U.S., Black migrant organizations are meeting community needs, building power, winning concrete reforms, and leading the way. This year alone, Black migrant organizations have relentlessly advocated for justice for Haitian migrants and secured major wins for all migrants, including ending the Remain in Mexico program, expanding TPS for migrants from Cameroon, Liberia, and Burma, and combating bond abuse in New York state. The BMPF’s first round of grants will support these organizations in continuing their transformational work.
My colleagues and I at the Four Freedoms Fund are committed to continue raising funds to resource Black migrant power-building and we invite our funder colleagues to join us. These initial grants from the Black Migrant Power Fund are just a first, crucial step. By joining the BMPF, funders can help us expand the pool of Black migrant grantees and deepen investments in Black migrant leaders, organizations, and communities.
Increased resources will support these phenomenal groups to build on their wins, fight to dismantle racist immigration policies and practices, and strengthen the long-term power and ability of growing Black migrant communities to thrive in the U.S.
I hope you will join us in investing in Black migrants’ powerful leadership.
Ola Osaze, Four Freedoms Fund deputy director & lead advisor for the Black Migrant Power Fund
About the Black Migrant Power Fund:
The Black Migrant Power Fund, officially launched in February 2020, is a community-led fund moving immediate, unrestricted funding to Black-led, grassroots organizations that are on the frontlines of addressing the urgent needs of Black migrants and building power with and for Black migrants in the U.S. By trusting Black migrant-led organizations that are doing the work to make funding decisions, the BMPF seeks to move money to under-resourced, grassroots organizations that are oft-neglected by philanthropy; invest in the leadership and resilience of Black migrant communities; and transform the U.S. immigration system to embrace the humanity and dignity of all migrants – including Black people.