In a challenging political and economic environment, Boston-based Grassroots International (GRI) announced today the successful completion of its $1 million Global Justice Fund.
“We launched this fund at the absolute trough of the recession and in a national political environment very hostile to international social change philanthropy,” said GRI Executive Director, Kevin Murray. “That we were successful says something important about the work of our international partners, and the ability of our donors to see the connection between global justice and real global security.”
Requesting that donors make a special gift to support three innovative new programs, the Global Justice Fund received gifts from more than 1000 individuals, including four gifts at the $100,000 level. With a modest operating budget of $1.2M, a million dollar program development fund was ambitious, to say the least. “This exceptional campaign will help transform the way Grassroots International is able to support the dynamic social change work of our partners,” said Shalini Nataraj, Chairperson of the GRI Board of Directors.
Grassroots International was founded in Boston 20 years ago by a group of activists whose mission was to work in solidarity with alternative development efforts around the world. To maintain its independence, Grassroots accepts no government funds and relies completely on the contributions of private donors. Today, Grassroots partners with 32 social change organizations in Brazil, Mexico, Haiti, Eritrea and Palestine, including the Landless Workers’ Movement ( Brazil) and the Haitian Human Rights Platform and the Democracy and Workers’ Rights Center ( Palestine).
The increased resources will fortify Grassroots’ three-pronged approach of grantmaking to overseas partners, educating U.S. based audiences about the work of these groups and advocating for a just and responsive foreign policy. The Fund will bring thematic focus to Grassroots’ partners’ work around issues of land and water rights and youth development and strengthen the organization’s advocacy and education voice with U.S. audiences.