New Fund: Dodge Foundation Launches First-Ever Open Call for Racial Justice Organizations

From the Dodge Foundation: At the Dodge Foundation, we are committed to engaging with and learning about racial justice-focused organizations working across the state of New Jersey. We have been supporting these types of organizations through our Imagine a New Way initiative over the last several years, connecting with organizations through intentional outreach and relationship building, and through a community-engaged grantmaking process in our Momentum Fund. Today, we are excited to announce that we are creating a new pathway for connection with racial justice-focused organizations that have not previously had access to the Dodge Foundation through our first-ever “Open Call.”

We know that supporting organizations through an open call process is in alignment with our vision. We have been working and building towards this moment for years because we believe that this process is critical to achieving a just and equitable New Jersey. We expect to distribute $500,000 with grants ranging from approximately $15,000 to $75,000 to 10 to 20 organizations depending on the organizations and the number of applications we receive.

Our own transformation to become a racial justice funder has been steeped in an approach to “learn by doing, and do while learning.” The only way to effectively live into this principle is to acknowledge a simple truth: we don’t know what we don’t know. The strong relationships that we’ve built over the past two years with our Imagine a New Way and Momentum Fund organizations, practitioners, and leaders have provided us with invaluable feedback, insights, and learnings to move our work ever closer to justice. But, we still have work to do in learning about organizations tackling structural racism across the State.

In this spirit, through this first-ever Open Call process, we will adjust and adapt.  We know that an application process is not perfect – that asking organizations to complete an application for funding takes time away from their mission. It’s our goal to make the process as streamlined as possible and to only ask questions that are essential to our understanding of the work.

And while today we are announcing the Open Call approach, this is not the only way we connect with communities, leaders, and organizations. Our team will continue to connect with communities, to show up, to ask questions, to listen deeply, and to identify how current systems—and in some cases, our own practices—continue to perpetuate injustices.

So now we turn to you – our community. Help us connect with and support organizations that are addressing the root causes and repair of structural racism across our State. Apply for funding yourself if your work aligns with our vision for a just and equitable New Jersey. And share the Open Call far and wide.

Learn more here.