WFSA Invests $325K in Arizona Nonprofits through First Statewide Fund

Women and Girls of Color Fund selects five grantee partners, spanning eight counties 

 The Women’s Foundation for the State of Arizona (formerly the Women’s Foundation of Southern Arizona) announced the five grantee partners for the Foundation’s inaugural Women and Girls of Color Fund. The unrestricted funding totals $325,000 and can be renewed for up to three years. This funding will impact women and girls across eight Arizona counties.

WFSA launched the Women and Girls of Color Fund in 2021 in response to the disparities and insufficient funding of organizations led by and serving women and girls of color. This lack of funding is not unique to Arizona, with less than 1.9% percent of U.S. philanthropic dollars supporting women, and just 0.5% going to nonprofits that serve women and girls of color.  

“Our grant-making approach acknowledges the immense need to bring more resources into the region and to filter those resources to the most marginalized in our community. The selected grantee partners demonstrate a commitment to creating an equitable future for communities marginalized by multiple systems of oppression,” said Dr. Amalia Luxardo, WFSA CEO.

About the Women and Girls of Color Fund 

Launched in 2021, The Women and Girls of Color Fund focuses on the sustainable growth and positive outcomes of organizations serving marginalized communities, among them, women and girls of color.

The fund was thoughtfully shaped through extensive community dialogue and research to address the unique needs and circumstances of organizations led by and serving women of color. One of the goals of this fund is to use a community-led approach in order to make grantmaking accessible, culturally informed and intentional.  

“The Fund demonstrates WFSA’s accountability to our BIPOC community by decreasing barriers that organizations led by and serving women and girls of color encounter when seeking funding. The unrestricted operating funds allocated in this grant help these organizations dream big and know that they have support and trust from allies in the philanthropic community,” said Laci Lester, the Women and Girls of Color Fund manager.

The funding impacts eight counties which includes Cochise, Gila, Pima, Pinal, Maricopa, Navajo, Santa Cruz and Yavapai Counties.

Ivette Fullerton with the Cihuapactli Collective shares that this funding will sustain programming for low-income urban indigenous families. “We are overwhelmed with gratitude to be a recipient of this Fund, being the first of its kind, in a state where the most marginalized community is BIPOC women. Organizations like ours, that are women-led and serve our community, are chronically underfunded and the funding of this allows us to get closer to our goal of achieving birth equity for women of color and their families in Arizona by increasing access to culturally responsive care during all reproductive stages,” she said.

Women and Girls of Color Fund 2021 Grantees 

Beyond the Hurt assists single mothers, at-risk youth, domestic violence survivors, and women recovering from substance abuse through resources and education to promote a healthy lifestyle.

Black Lives Matter, Phoenix is an inclusive, abolitionist collective of community members with the intention of centering the leadership of black women who sit at the margins of other social identities, challenge police brutality and value all Black lives: queer and trans folks, disabled folks, undocumented folks, folks touched by the carceral system, women, and all Black lives along the gender spectrum. They dream of becoming a resource hub for Black folks that centers various healing modalities.

Cihuapactli Collective provides healing for urban Indigenous Peoples from the diaspora by sharing wisdom, connecting resources, revitalizing traditional knowledge, promoting and advocating for health and wellness. They are devoted to understanding and utilizing traditional Indigenous practices throughout the lifespan with a special focus on maternal health, infant care, and early childhood development. The Collective serves many families who have experienced maternal morbidity or culturally insensitive health care providers which have sometimes led to negative or traumatic outcomes.

P.L.A.N. provides free legal services for non-detained immigrants facing imminent deportation.

YWCA Southern Arizona serves southern Arizona with a mission to eliminate racism, empower women and promote peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. YWCA believes the success of our communities depends on upholding equality, inclusion, and opportunity as fundamental values.   

WFSA staff will create space for this inaugural cohort to engage with each other throughout the year, identifying needs for technical assistance and other resources and building social capital. This multi-year unrestricted funding will be renewed after each year in November for the grantee partners selected, for up to three years.