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Donor-advised funds as anti-racism impact investing tools

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Woman at Black Lives Matter protest

Recent events in communities across America are painful reminders to all of us that systemic racial inequity and injustice in our society continues to severely damage the quality of life for Black people. 

Our responsibility as your community foundation is to strive for positive change in our region, especially as it relates to transforming systems that have been broken for far too long. 

Part of that responsibility is our duty to you – attorneys, accountants and financial advisors – to help you serve the donors, nonprofits and citizens who are your colleagues and clients. 

One meaningful way to support anti-racism efforts in our community is through donor-advised funds.

Donor-advised funds are sometimes described as "charitable checking accounts." And while donor-advised funds established at the community foundation are convenient and tax-savvy, the benefits to society run far deeper.

Embedded at the intersection of donors, nonprofits, civic leaders and citizens, community foundations are a hub for impact investing, including through donor-advised funds. If you aren’t yet familiar with the growing importance of impact investing, it’s a good time to get up to speed. For inspiration, we recommend that you become familiar with the proactive strategy adopted by Andreesen Horowitz in establishing the Talent X Opportunity Fund, a donor-advised fund. Anything but passive, this fund is an example of roll-up-your-sleeves philanthropy designed to immediately address societal injustice. 

At a local level, donor-advised funds are fueling the work of nonprofits on the front lines of fighting for racial justice, including the Akron Urban League, the Akron chapter of the NAACP, and more.

Your philanthropic commitments and those of your clients can, and will, make a difference. Whether your clients are venture capitalist investors or small business owners, Akron Community Foundation can open the door to supporting this critically important cause.

To learn more, contact Laura Fink, senior director of development and advisor relations, at 330-436-5611 or lfink@akroncf.org.

Additional Resources

Community Response Fund for Nonprofits
Originally created to address emergency needs related to the COVID-19 outbreak, Akron Community Foundation recently expanded the focus of the Community Response Fund for Nonprofits to include programs that support racial equity in our community. Learn more.

Black Philanthropy Month
Observed every August, Black Philanthropy Month is a global celebration and concerted campaign to elevate African-descent giving and illuminate the ingenuity and transformative impact of generosity in Black communities. This year's theme is FORESIGHT 20/20. Learn how you and your clients can get involved.

Anti-Racism Resources
Share with your clients this list of Akron-area resources compiled by The Devil Strip.

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