Fourth Cohort of Racial Equity Fund Investments Announced
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United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County

Fourth Cohort of Racial Equity Fund Investments Announced

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July 20, 2023

It affects everyone when a social system is out of balance, but people of color feel the impact most severely. Racial equity works to eliminate racial disparities and improve outcomes for everyone.

At United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County, we believe in racial equity. We believe in building a community that offers access, resources, and the opportunity for long-term success. The Racial Equity Fund is focused on a commitment to deepen our impact as funders, partners, and conveners, especially as related to racial equity and social justice.

The goal of the Racial Equity Fund is to invest in Black- and Brown-led organizations to increase organizational capacity. Funding decisions were made in partnership with the Racial Equity Fund Advisory Committee.


Here are the agencies who will receive the next round of investments in 2023:

Asian American Pacific Islander Coalition of Wisconsin (AAPI)

The AAPI Coalition of Wisconsin was formed in 2020 in response to the rise of anti-Asian hate. It is the first statewide organization to bring together the collective voice of the AAPI community. Their work focuses on coalition building through collaborative community-led projects that raise the visibility of AAPIs, combat anti-Asian racism, advocate for AAPI resources, and engage AAPIs civically.

Funding supports the AAPI Coalition of Wisconsin in taking the first steps toward building a sustainable and sound organization. The organization has been run by volunteers and continues to be in response mode since its inception.

City on a Hill

City on a Hill’s mission is to transform cities and families by restoring hope, enhancing quality of life, and advancing justice for all generations. Their vision is a world free from poverty in all its forms, where all children and families can thrive, regardless of background. Short-term goals for City on a Hill are to increase and diversify sources of annual revenue, establish an operating reserve fund, and achieve an 85% annual retention rate for all staff.

Funding allows them to develop organizational leaders, strengthen operational efficiency, and improve Infrastructure.

Community First

Community First (CF) is an affordable housing agency. Their mission is to improve the quality of life for residents and their neighborhoods by developing quality, safe, and affordable housing opportunities for individuals and families, while promoting self-sufficiency and neighborhood revitalization. They accomplish their mission by partnering with community members and partner organizations, providing housing, critical home repairs and various long term, wrap-around support services, such as ongoing financial literacy and home maintenance training. Their short-term goals include hiring staff, creating teams, and finding new ways to continue to support their sites.

Funding allows them to gain resources in grant/donor cultivation and board development. 

Diverse & Resilient

The mission of Diverse & Resilient is to achieve health equity and improve the safety and well-being of LGBTQ+ people and communities in Wisconsin. Their short-term goals are to increase awareness of HIV within same-gender-loving communities of color, develop leadership ability of trans individuals and LGBTQ+ youth to serve as advocates for themselves and their communities, connect people living with HIV who have fallen out of care back into care with resources to address barriers they may be facing, and develop trainings and workshops to meet the educational needs of organizations and communities specific to the needs of LGBTQ+ individuals.

Funding allows them to expand their reach and serve more transgender individuals, allowing them to increase impact. 

Fathers Making Progress

Fathers Making Progress’ mission is to improve the community and generational cycles through strengthening fathers. This organization’s strategic vision involves creating a fully sustainable, adequately staffed, community-based, father-and-family serving organization. It was established by fathers from our community to find innovative, enfranchising, efficacy-building solutions to disparities in our community

Funding will greatly assist their growing organization by removing post-ARPA uncertainty and place them into an innovative build-out space with adequate resources available to pursue their long- and short-term organizational goals.

Healthy MKE

Healthy MKE’s mission is to uplift the health and well-being of Milwaukee County's most underinvested communities. By addressing community health needs as defined by county and state needs assessments, they strive to arm individuals and families with the knowledge, resources, and support they need to take control of their health and contribute to a just and equitable society. Short-term, they aim to expand the health and wellness workforce with community-based navigators offering culturally sensitive support, fostering trust, and encouraging long-term community engagement. Healthy MKE also plans to extend their support to 50 community-based organizations, including BIPOC-owned wellness providers, through technical assistance, strategic development, and visibility enhancement.

Funding provides financial stability, enabling them to shift their focus towards the implementation and expansion of their programs.

Hope Through Restoration

Hope Through Restoration’s (HTR) vision is to provide life transformational restoration and healing of individuals, families, neighborhoods, and communities. Hope Through Restoration’s mission is to offer Christ-centered, biblically based encouragement, direction, and support to those living in the urban community so they can successfully navigate the challenges they face and live healthy and productive lives. HTR’s short term goals are to continue to build capacity for the After Incarceration program by adding two FTE Certified Peer Specialists. This will allow HTR to increase all current programming and will bring 24/7 support coverage to HTR housing.

Funding helps HTR build capacity to expand the number of facilities and required employees to facilitate this increase.

Riverworks Development Corporation

Riverworks Development Corporation (RDC) promotes economic prosperity by providing coordinated resources for residents and businesses with emphasis on Riverwest, Harambee, and the surrounding communities. RDC envisions a vibrant and diverse community of residents, businesses, and stakeholders who jointly create and maintain a prosperous neighborhood and quality of life. Their short-term goals are to build a cohesive leadership team, develop tracking and metrics systems to help measure impact and support, and to increase the capacity of their Financial Clinic and Business Development Hub in serving more individuals city-wide and working with more entrepreneurs and small business owners of color.

Funding allows Riverworks to build capacity, offer consistent programs from year-to-year, strengthen leadership, respond to timely opportunities, and strengthen its overall impact. 


The Racial Equity Advisory Committee also awarded honorariums to organizations that completed a full application for funding but were declined. 


Interested in supporting the Racial Equity Fund?

Click here to donate.


For more updates on the Racial Equity Fund and other United Way initiatives, follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and LinkedIN.

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