© 2019 Blue Heart

12651 San Pablo Ave, Richmond, CA 94805

EIN: 46-1323531

WHO WE FUND

Blue Heart exists to elevate the stories and solutions of those on the frontlines of today’s most entrenched social challenges.

We channel funding from our members to grassroots partner organizations across the United States. We partner with one organization each month. Each organization is carefully researched and interviewed before the decision to fund is made.

The leadership team of Peacock Rebellion

Staff members of Planting Justice

Cat Brooks & The Anti Police-Terror Project

We partner with organizations that:

  • Build the political and cultural power of low-income communities and/or communities of color

  • Use participatory, grassroots processes to achieve their goals

  • Work primarily within the US and with US populations

  • Are currently active, have an organizational structure, and have the capacity to put funding into immediate action

Please note: Organizations do NOT need to be a registered 501c3. 

We are always looking for new organizations to support. If you know of an organization that meets our criteria, please nominate them using the form below. 

OUR PARTNERS

October 2019

El/La Para TransLatinas

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Source: El/La

El/La is a grassroots organization led by and for transgender Latinas (TransLatinas), based in San Francisco. They support the survival and improve the quality of life of TransLatinas in the Bay Area. In their words: “We respond to those who see us as shameful, disposable or less than human. We are here to reflect the style and grace of our survival, and to make new paths for ourselves.” El/La emerged in 2006, and is based on 10 years of HIV prevention campaigning by the founding team. They continue to offer HIV prevention services for TransLatinas, as part of a larger holistic set of programs to support the mental, emotional, physical, sexual, and economic health of transgender Latina women.

August 2019

AgitArte

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Source: AgitArte

AgitArte is an organization of working class artists and cultural organizers who create projects and practices of cultural solidarity with grassroots struggles against oppression, and propose alternatives that generate possibilities for transformations in our world. They initiate and lead community-based educational and arts programs, along with projects that agitate in the struggles for liberation.

September 2019

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Source: Sins Invalid

Sins Invalid incubates and celebrates artists with disabilities, particularly queer and gender-variant artists of color. They push normative paradigms by challenging what ‘normal’ and ‘sexy’ mean, painting an alternative picture of beauty and sexual inclusivity that our world desperately needs. They fearlessly explore sexuality on stage, presenting multidisciplinary performances from poetry to music, from drama to dance. They also offer political education workshops to organizations interested in deepening their analysis of and commitment to action on disability justice.
 

Based in San Francisco, and working nationally to shift the conversation around disability justice, Sins Invalid has profoundly changed our perspectives on access, disability, and power. 

July 2019

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Source: Kwai Lam

Bay Area American Indian Two-Spirits (BAAITS) is a community-based, all-volunteer organization offering culturally relevant activities for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Native Americans, and their families and friends. Two-Spirit refers to the shared understanding in Native American tribes that some individuals naturally possess both masculine and feminine spiritual qualities. 

 

They are working to re-imagine and create Native American spaces and traditions that includes the Two Spirit community. They hold an annual Two Spirit Powwow, community drumming, and PRIDE activities. They have hosted eight powwows, with over 5,000 attendees, and have inspired the inclusion and visibility of Two-Spirit peoples at Native American events across the continent.

June 2019

BAY-Peace

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Source: BAY-Peace

BAY-Peace is a youth-led organization on a mission to support young people in transforming violence, particularly the violence that we normalize and the violence that is systemic. One in four youth who come from neighborhoods in East and West Oakland, where 30% of the population lives in poverty, are incarcerated. BAY-Peace rallies youth around winning local political campaigns (No Coal in Oakland, Prop 57, etc.), gives paid opportunities to develop vocational skills, and provides arts and healing workshops for youth to understand and fight for their visions for a different world.

May 2019

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Source: Marin Independent Journal

 POOR Magazine, a poor people led/Indigenous Peoples-led arts organization dedicated to providing revolutionary media access, art, education and advocacy to folks in poverty. They are not just visibilizing poor people, they are creating a movement, an organizing model, and a new story for changing how poor people self-determine their futures that is being taken up across the country. Even though they do a lot (People Skool! The Homefulness Project! POOR Radio! Stolen Land tour!), this organization is mostly volunteer-run. Blue Heart supported POOR Magazine in 2018, in various events, and is thrilled to be partnering again this month.

March 2019

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Source: Regenerate Nebraska

RegeNErate Nebraska is a growing community of local farmers, community groups, urban consumers, and everyday citizens working together for more local control over how their food is produced and distributed.

As RegeNErate says: “Everything comes from the soil — all that feeds us, nourishes us, provides us with strength and community. It’s who we are. Nebraskans know, as well as anyone, that soil is soul.” To share this principle, RegeNErate holds workshops and networks between farms to nurture a food system based on cooperatives, healthy food access, and carbon drawdown. 

 

We are excited to be supporting ecological and social regeneration in the midwest!

April 2019

Peacock Rebellion

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Source: Peacock Rebellion

Peacock Rebellion is the only arts organization in the country led entirely by queer and trans people of color. They put on kickass comedy shows, provide a space for healing and creation in East Oakland, and spread a vision of social justice through their sassy art. Their major annual event, the Brouhaha Comedy Show, features a trans women of color comedy troupe (the only one in the country), attracts over 1,000 people, and has won national critical acclaim. 

Most recently, Peacock Rebellion has been offering free Queer & Trans People of Color (QTPOC) yoga, providing weekly maker nights for the community, and hosting hackathons and careers days for queer and trans folks. Peacock is an example of an organization doing it all - rapid response and safety planning to mitigate the direct violence of our current political climate, nurturing resilience-based practices of healing and skill-building, and dreaming forward a movement for QTPOC liberation. 

February 2019

Roots of Labor Birth Collective 

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Black Women Birthing Justice

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Source: RLBC

Black women face significantly higher maternal mortality risk, across income and education levels, and Indigenous women face infant mortality rates at 1.6 times the rate of white women. Doulas are the most effective and culturally relevant intervention for this epidemic. Roots of Labor Birth Collective and Black Women Birthing Justice are creating transformative community-led solutions by providing doulas of color to birthing people (including incarcerated folks) and hosting doula trainings.

January 2019

December 2018

Greenaction for Environmental Health & Justice

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Source: Kevin Hume / SF Examiner

Greenaction is a multiracial grassroots organization that works with working class urban, rural, and indigenous communities to fight environmental racism.

One of Greenaction’s recent health justice campaigns is about the 450 acre lot of the Bayview-Hunters Point Shipyard site. It was used for nuclear research until 1974 and then the San Francisco city government began re-developing the site and turn it into residential lots in the late 1990’s amid the tech boom, though over 90% of the soil on the site is in fact still contaminated. 

Greenaction has been the foremost watchdog group for this contamination cover-up - without their grassroots education and organizing with residents, class action lawsuit, and persistent work to hold the Navy and City accountable, this likely would have stayed well under the rug. And thousands of primarily black and brown Bay Area residents would have continued to be exposed to toxic contaminants with no recourse. This is what organizing for environmental justice looks like.

October 2018

Indian People Organizing for Change

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Source: East Bay Express

Indian People Organizing for Change (IPOC) is a grassroots organization led by Ohlone women who are fighting to preserve their sacred sites from further destruction and restore Native self-determination in the Bay Area.
 

The founders of IPOC, Johnella LaRose and Corrina Gould, have also launched the Sogorea Te Land Trust, which collects a voluntary tax from Bay Area residents to purchase land to return to the Ohlone people. Investing in land trusts is a way to repatriate land to Native people and to encourage Bay Area residents to reflect on their responsibility to local Native people.

November 2018

July 2018

August 2018

September 2018

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Source: CIYJA

CIYJA was created and run by undocumented youth fiercely advocating for immigrant rights, the abolition of ICE, and youth power. In this political moment of borders being used to divide communities, white supremacy used to dehumanize entire peoples, and xenophobia used to tear families apart, it is critical that we support the grassroots organizations that have been and will be on the frontlines of transforming immigrant rights and the systems that uphold them. 

Using a chapter-based model, CIYJA not only engages in building up the political analysis of undocumented youth, they also seek to shift the toxic “good immigrant vs bad immigrant” narrative that has perpetuated racism in the U.S. 

June 2018

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Source: CHNSC

The Collaborative started when a group of activists saw the horrific impact of nail salon products and practices on their workers, and have organized to win tangible improvements in the lives of those workers through education, empowerment, and the visioning of a more just industry writ large. 

The Collaborative is winning worker protections and fostering the creation of “healthy salons” by educating and developing the leadership of workers, conducting research about health outcomes, advocating for more just policies, and raising public awareness. For example, for the 2016 the Collaborative called 4,300 households, knocked on 1,200 doors, and visited 170 nail salons, primarily serving the Vietnamese community.

May 2018

April 2018

Community to Community

C2C is a scrappy, grassroots organization based in Washington State that is intrepidly bold in their politic and vision of immigrant justice and food sovereignty. Their mission says it all: “We strive to reclaim our humanity by redefining power in order to end settler colonialism, capitalism, and patriarchy in their external and internalized forms.”

With a staff of only 3, C2C has built a powerful base of farmworkers fighting for the solutions that come straight from those most impacted, and that explicitly create participatory processes that will shift power over the long term.C2C works to change policy through building the power of farm worker unions and serves on a range of coalitions holding our corporatized and industrialized agricultural system accountable.

March 2018

Self-Help Hunger Program

The Self-Help Hunger Program was started by Aunti Frances, a long-time Oakland resident who has experienced “houselessness” and living in a shelter. She started giving warm, home-cooked meals to six homeless folks who were on her block, which then blossomed into a weekly community event. Aunti Frances and her small team of co-chefs carry on the tradition of the Black Panthers’ Free Meals program, using a portion of their own Social Security checks each month to provide hot meals for over 50 people each week rain or shine.

 

With the simple act of preparing and sharing nutritious food once a week, the Self-Help Hunger program has created a vibrant hub of community, generosity, and human dignity.

Source: Self Help Hunger Program

We are thrilled to support DBCFSN, a young organization who recently won the Food Sovereignty Prize which recognizes grassroots groups fighting for a democratic food system. The Network strives to ensure the African American population of Detroit has access to safe, accessible food.

DBCFSN is dreaming big with their Detroit People’s Co-op. It will be a full-service grocery store, open to the general public, and cooperatively-owned by member/owners. Creating more than 20 jobs, the co-op aims to increase access to healthy, sustainably grown food while building community ownership and empowerment.

Source: Detroit Metro Times

February 2018

Source: Guy Corbishley/Demotix

With only two staff, Banteay Srei is the leading voice against sex exploitation and trafficking in Oakland. Many of us don’t know this: Oakland is one of the top 15 cities in the U.S for sex trafficking, which disproportionately impacts Asian & Pacific Islander (API) women. Banteay Srei provides a safe space, sex positive education, community building activities, and leadership development for API women to foster cultural pride and self-determination. The name Banteay Srei comes from an ancient temple in cambodia honoring the strength and unity of female deities and means “the women’s temple”.

Banteay Srei

Desiree Alliance is a coalition of sex workers, health professionals, social scientists, professional sex educators, and their supporting networks working together for an improved understanding of the sex industry and its human, social and political impacts. Every year, Desiree hosts a national conference in New Orleans, as part of its grassroots network-building work. It’s an space unlike any other - sex workers and supporters come together to discuss deeply personal challenges, dream boldly, and advocate for human, labor and civil rights for all workers in the sex industry.

Desiree Alliance

January 2018

Black Organizing Project

The Black Organizing Project is a powerful Oakland-based group that is training up black organizers to fight the school-to-prison pipeline. BOP is pushing the frontiers of community organizing, visioning safe communities, and evolving youth leadership. As Jackie Byers said in our interview with her last month: “No real historic change has ever sounded realistic in the current condition.” BOP cultivates the courage in black organizers to name that seemingly intractable future where their communities are free from oppression and terror.

 

They have won new policies, such as the elimination of a school precedence to expel students for willful defiance (which black students are disproportionately expelled for).

Undocu Black

Source: 2016 Undocumented and Black Convening

Undocu Black is a multigenerational national network of currently and formerly undocumented Black people. UndocuBlack Network’s mission is twofold: 1) to “Blackify” this country’s understanding of the undocumented population and 2) to facilitate access to resources for the Black undocumented community. Their vision is to have truly inclusive immigrant rights and racial justice movements that advocate for the rights of Black undocumented individuals.

 

UndocuBlack emerged just two years ago out of The Undocumented and Black Convening, a first-of-its kind national gathering of over 65 Black undocumented persons in Miami, Florida in January 2016.

December 2017

Organización Boricua is a grassroots agroecology group in Puerto Rico that has been catapulted forward as the lead organizations in the #JustRecovery struggle - seeking to advance justice, rather than a corporate take-over, as Puerto Rico rebuilds from the devasting hurricanes.

Blue Heart funding supports Boricua’s critical rebuilding efforts. They are directing weekly ‘Brigades’, which include 20-40 people providing direct food, water, and emotional support to those impacted by the Puerto Rico hurricanes. They also provide food production equipment and agroecology guidance to rural communities in recovery. In the next phase of their #JustRecovery, they will use new funding to rebuild infrastructure in rural communities towards a vision of food sovereignty. Before the storm, PR imported 80% of their food. The recovery process from the storm is an opportunity to shift that status quo. Boricua is advancing a vision that enables PR to be independent in how they grow and share their food and energy infrastructure.

November 2017

El/La Para TransLatinas

El/La is a grassroots organization led by and for transgender Latinas (TransLatinas), based in San Francisco. They support the survival and improve the quality of life of TransLatinas in the Bay Area. In their words: “We respond to those who see us as shameful, disposable or less than human. We are here to reflect the style and grace of our survival, and to make new paths for ourselves.” El/La emerged in 2006, and is based on 10 years of HIV prevention campaigning by the founding team. They continue to offer HIV prevention services for TransLatinas, as part of a larger holistic set of programs to support the mental, emotional, physical, sexual, and economic health of transgender Latina women.

Organización Latina de Trans en Texas

Organización Latina de Trans en Texas is a grassroots organization led by and for Trans Latina women, based in Houston, Texas. They build collective action to support the survival and improve the quality of life of Trans Latina women across Texas. In their words, their vision is: “Viviendo libremente en una sociedad con igualdad sin importar nuestra identidad de genero.” (living free in an equal society without importance on our gender identity). OLTT offers advocacy, chosen family, and a safe place to rest, learn, and grow for their members in a state that has particularly high rates of harassment and discrimination against Trans people. According to a 2015 UCLA study, 79% of transgender people from Texas reported having experienced harassment or mistreatment at work, and 45% reported that they were not hired, 26% reported that they were fired because of their gender identity or expression.

October 2017

People's Community Medics

The People’s Community Medics was founded in 2011 by Sharena Thomas and Lesley Phillips. As members of the Oscar Grant Committee we conducted an independent investigation and learned of the refusal of the police to call an ambulance for 20 minutes for the fatally wounded Oscar Grant, the PMC founders decided that  people need to learn basic emergency first aid so that we can help one another until an ambulance arrives. Since March 2012 PMC has been giving free trainings in basic emergency first aid for treating seizures, gunshot wounds and stabbings to folks of all ages in Oakland, San Francisco, Richmond, Berkeley, Oxnard, Chicago, Seattle, and Portland.

Ujimaa Medics

Ujimaa Medics teaches people how to be the heroes of their neighborhoods. We offer trainings in urban emergency first response, primarily to people who live in, or love people who live in communities where shootings often occur. We train on how to maneuver to protect yourself, how to help the injured, manage to chaos, and what to do when the police and paramedics arrive.

We also offer and are developing other emergency trainings. This includes a training on how to prevent asthma attacks, as well as how to help someone having a mild to moderate asthma attack and prevent it from becoming more serious.

Source: umedics.org

September 2017

AlternateROOTS

Alternate ROOTS is a group of artists and cultural organizers in the U.S. south creating art rooted in community, place, tradition, and spirit. Alternate ROOTS is committed to something radical: making work advancing social justice in, with, by, for and about artists’ communities. Their annual ROOTS week is a gathering for hundreds of artists to learn practical skills for building democratic art institutions, share new ideas, and nourish a network of creative revolutionaries.

August 2017

POOR Magazine

POOR Magazine is a poor people-led/indigenous people-led arts organization dedicated to providing revolutionary media access, art, education and advocacy to folks in poverty. They visibilize poor people in their own words, and they challenge the de-humanization of poor people that happens in the US. Their organizing model enables poor people to determine their own futures, using tools of self-advocacy and creative expression.

WRAP

The Western Regional Advocacy Project  tackles the root causes of homelessness by uniting local social justice organizations to hold government accountable to creating just housing policy and ending homelessness. With only 3 staff, WRAP conducts street outreach and organizing, produces critical research, and engages in direct action.

July 2017

Sogorea Te' Land Trust

The Sogorea Te Land Trust is an urban Indigenous women-led community organization that facilitates the return of Chochenyo and Karkin Ohlone lands in the San Francisco Bay Area to Indigenous stewardship. Sogorea Te creates opportunities for all people living in Ohlone territory to work together to re-envision the Bay Area community and what it means to live on Ohlone land. 

 

Blue Heart's funding will go towards the general operating funds of the Ohlone women who are creating the land trust. It will be the first land trust in the US created and run by Indigenous women.

Winnemem Wintu

The McCloud River Salmon Restoration Project is an initiative led by the Winnemem Wintu tribe of Northern California. Chinook Salmon ("Nur") travel between the Pacific Ocean and the McCloud River for their annual spawning cycle, but are on the verge of extinction due to dams, water pollution, and a changing climate. Only 1% returned to spawn in 2015. But the tribe is working with biologists to successfully re-establish a native population.

 

The funding from Blue Heart members will go towards supporting the Winnemem Wintu to transport the fish stocks from New Zealand to the McCloud River.

June 2017

Peacock Rebellion

Peacock Rebellion is an SF Bay Area -based, queer + trans people of color crew of artist-activist-healers. They make performing, literary and media arts magic for social, economic and environmental justice. Through live local cabaret shows, touring productions, workshops, games they are  working towards epic community transformation.

 

Blue Heart's funding supported Peacock's general operating costs, which were vital support for their June Brouhaha shows - a 2-day Trans People of Color Comedy Festival that is the first of its kind in the US!

Marsha P. Johnson Institute

Led by renowned Black trans activist Elle Hearns, the Marsha P Johnson Institute is a response to the increasing murder rate of Black trans women. Given the murder rate from 2010 to present, transgender women experience a greater risk of death by hate violence than any other group in the United States.

 

Blue Heart's funding supported the executive planning committee's retreat and their general operating costs as the Institute formally launches in Fall 2017.

May 2017

Youth United for Community Action

YUCA is a youth-led, grassroots organization in East Palo Alto. For 23 years, they have built broad-base coalitions across East Palo Alto to go to bat on the biggest issues, such as gentrification, education, and climate change. In its lifetime, YUCA has trained over 150 low-income youth of color as core youth organizers and 650 low-income youth of color as members. Training involves political education, building critical analysis, and practicing community organizing by building and implementing campaigns. In 2007, YUCA helped shut down Romic, a hazardous waste plant in East Palo Alto, after 11 years of tireless campaigning.

April 2017

Anti-Police Terror Project

The Anti-Police Terror Project is a black-led coalition dedicated to ending violence perpetuated against black, brown and poor people by the state. Based out of Oakland, CA, APTP provides emotional and material support to families impacted by police violence, advocates for policies that reduce the over-policing of black and brown communities, and builds alternative community-based systems to calling the police.

Blue Heart provided unrestricted core funding to help APTP expand their grassroots, holistic model of family support and violence reduction.  

March 2017

El Quinto Sol de America

El Quinto Sol de America is a grassroots organization that uses art and education to create empower low-income rural communities in California’s Central Valley. The majority of the residents in these communities are laborers in agricultural fields and processing plants, predominantly monolingual Spanish speakers. EQS builds the skills and leadership capacity of their members so that they can understand and advocate for policies that support the health and safety of their communities.

Blue Heart funding supported El Quinto Sol's summer youth arts and culture program. 

February 2017

Arab Resources Organizing Center

The Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC) is a grassroots organization working to empower and organize the Arab-American community towards justice and self-determination. AROC members build community power in the Bay Area by participating in leadership development, political education, and campaigns. Recognizing the diversity of experiences and interests within the Arab community, AROC devises a multi-pronged strategy to meet those needs while prioritizing the most marginalized sectors of our constituency to inform our work. AROC provides a centralized space for analysis, strategy, and formulation of concrete campaigns to organize for change.

Blue Heart funding supported AROC's youth power-building work. 

January 2017

Indigenous Environmental Network

The Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) is an indigenous-led organization based in Minnesota. With just four staff members, it has risen to become one of the leading organizers behind and respected voices advocating for indigenous rights, including the resistance movement at Standing Rock. IEN is a critical connector of hundreds of Indigenous, faith-based, women, youth, labor, environmental, and ethnic organizations. Their annual national gatherings are the common ground for education and organizing around resisting extractive interests and building alternatives. They are the “eyes and ears of tribal grassroots, traditional leadership and small disenfranchised tribes and Alaska villages on environmental justice issues.”

Blue Heart subscriber funds went towards IEN's general operating budget, which has been supporting staff in organizing at Standing Rock.

December 2016

Planting Justice

Planting Justice is a grassroots organization with a mission to democratize access to affordable, nutritious food by empowering urban residents with the skills, resources, and knowledge they need to maximize food production, expand job opportunities, and ensure environmental sustainability in the Bay Area.

Blue Heart subscriber funds supported Planting Justice’s re-entry programs, which support employees across the organization returning home from San Quentin prison. Since 2009, Planting Justice has built over 400 edible permaculture gardens in the San Francisco Bay Area, worked with five high-schools to develop food justice curriculum and created 20 green jobs for men transitioning from prison in the food justice movement.

November 2016

Movement Generation

Movement Generation inspires and engages vibrant social movements led by low-income communities and communities of color committed to a Just Transition away from profit and pollution and towards healthy, resilient and life-affirming local economies.

Blue Heart subscriber funds helped grow Movement Generation’s Justice and Ecology Project, which trains community leaders, activists, and organizers in the development of local, sustainable, socially-just economies and participatory democracy. Since 2007, the Justice and Ecology Project has engaged over 150 organizations and thousands of change agents through intensive retreats, political education, hands-on skills workshops, peer exchange, campaign development, alliance building, and strategic support.

October 2016

AYPAL

AYPAL is a leadership development, community organizing and coalition building organization that seeks to empower Oakland’s low-income Asian & Pacific Islander immigrant and refugee families.

Blue Heart funding supported AYPAL’s summer leadership development program and its arts activism projects that explore and celebrate AYPAL youth history, culture, and identity. Since 1998, AYPAL has developed the leadership of over 500 Youth Leaders and has engaged over 5000 young people in grassroots campaigns.