Friday, September 28, 2012
Open Society Foundations, Root Cause, and PolicyLink partner to improve life outcomes for black men and boys
The Campaign for Black Male Achievement at the Open Society Foundations, has announced a $2 million dollar investment to launch the Leadership & Sustainability Institute for Black Male Achievement (LSI). Created in partnership with Root Cause and PolicyLink, the Institute will consist of a national membership network of organizations across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors that are committed to improving the life outcomes and creating systemic change for black men and boys.
“Black men and boys are challenged by entrenched and systemic problems in need of innovative solutions,” said Shawn Dove, manager of the Campaign for Black Male Achievement. “Leaders working in the field of black male achievement have always grappled with a lack of funding, capacity, and momentum. With the strong network of leaders created and sustained by the LSI, we can now create the support system necessary to sustain effective programs and policies that will do much to improve the lives of black men and boys across the United States.”
As many organizations that serve black men and boys struggle with the challenge of sustaining their work, this is welcome news. PolicyLink will focus on strengthening and forming networks of organizations at the local, state, and national levels to coordinate on shared policy and field-building efforts that improve outcomes for black men and boys, and develop and disseminate communications content that builds momentum and positive narratives for the black male achievement field. Root Cause will manage a centralized portfolio of resources for LSI members to access high-quality, capacity-building services that help them sustain their work. In addition, Root Cause will lead a Black Male Achievement Social Innovation Accelerator to support cohorts of effective organizations to spread their work, demonstrate their impact, and become nationally recognized leaders.
The LSI will be formally launched on October 3 at the network’s first Innovation & Impact Forum that will showcase major initiatives and innovations in the black male achievement field, highlight practical research and tools, provide networking opportunities, and identify proven strategies that are working. Register to view the live stream here. The forum will be hosted by Susan L. Taylor of the National Cares Mentoring Movement, and feature remarks by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Geoffrey Canada of Harlem's Children's Zone, Earvin 'Magic' Johnson and Dr. Robert K. Ross of the The California Endowment.
Joining the Open Society Foundations in funding the LSI are The Skillman Foundation, The California Endowment, Knight Foundation, and the The Heinz Endowments, with an investment of over $1 million.