With $7 Million in Grant Funding Trinity Church Wall Street Joins Urgent Call for Racial Justice and Responds to COVID-19 Impacts

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

With $7 Million in Grant Funding Trinity Church Wall Street Joins Urgent Call for Racial Justice and Responds to COVID-19 Impacts 

NEW YORK, June 23, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Trinity Church Wall Street has awarded nearly $7 million in grants to 57 organizations dedicated to ending systemic racism in New York City and offering alternative models for a new vision of how New Yorkers can reach their potential and thrive.

The 57 grants announced today range from $50,000 to $300,000 and total $6.86 million. The grantees are working on a range of projects, including fighting to end the racist practice of cash bail, reimagining the city's approach to affordable housing and lowering the number of households experiencing housing insecurity. 

"Trinity established racial justice and homelessness as our New York City funding priorities last year. Now COVID-19 is magnifying the inequities in our city – the very inequities that our grants are designed to address," said the Rev. Phillip A. Jackson, Priest-in-Charge and Vicar of Trinity Church Wall Street. "The pandemic has strengthened Trinity's calling and commitment to end the cycles of mass homelessness and mass incarceration." 

Of the grants, $500,000 are specifically designated for Rikers Island re-entry support programs. "COVID-19 has further intensified the challenges faced by people being released from jails and prisons, who lack access to housing and other supports," said Neill Coleman, Chief Philanthropy Officer at Trinity. "The pandemic is magnifying the pernicious interconnection between cycles of incarceration and homelessness. These connected cycles were created - and continue to be driven - by systemic racism, and at this moment of national uprising against racism, we hope Trinity's support can break these cycles and advance new visions and just alternatives that can heal our city."

The five grantees in this area are working to bail people out of Rikers and provide housing, medicine, food, and other services to recently released individuals. 

Trinity also funded 32 grantees whose work centers on racial justice.

"We're pleased to support organizations whose work is critical to disrupt the cycles of incarceration. It is only through community organizing, advocacy, and alternative models that we can end the perpetual punishment of Black and brown New Yorkers, and enable them to access the keys to upward mobility: housing, education, and employment," said Susan Shah, Managing Director for Racial Justice at Trinity. 

Trinity also provided 19 grants as part of its housing and homelessness initiative, including 17 grantees that are being funded by Trinity for the first time. "Trinity is proud to support organizations that directly work with people facing housing insecurity in New York City. The grants in this cycle focus on three areas: promoting efforts to increase low-income housing and support homelessness prevention; supporting organizations helping women with justice-system involvement; and aiding organizations engaged in advocacy and policy," said Beatriz de la Torre, Trinity's Managing Director for Housing & Homelessness.

Several of these grants focus specifically on supporting women coming out of Rikers Island through a gender-responsive care model catering to women who have experienced trauma.  

These grants are in addition to nearly $2.5 million in emergency grants and loans Trinity awarded in April to help local nonprofits assist vulnerable New Yorkers during the pandemic. Trinity also awarded $1.5 million in emergency COVID-19 grants to international organizations in June and a further $956,000 in grants to support financial capacity building in churches in Africa and South America.

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