TrollBusters

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: Media Innovation Collaboratory, Inc.
Amount: $105,000 in 2020

What is TrollBusters?

TrollBusters is a just-in-time rescue service for women writers and journalists experiencing online harassment. A fiscally-sponsored project of Media Innovation Collaboratory, TrollBusters provides online pest control for journalists by providing awareness, training, consulting and other supports to individual journalists and media organizations to mitigate the impact of online harassment and threats.

Why do we think this project is important?

TrollBusters provides online monitoring of dangerous actors who may pose a threat to journalists’ livelihoods and lives. They provide trainings for newsrooms, act proactively and reactively in response to instances of online harassment, and support individual journalists through one-on-one services and free resources on digital health and wellness. A portion of this grant was used for legal support in finalizing their fiscal sponsor relationship and related infrastructure.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Trollbusters?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $215,000 to TrollBusters.

Safe Voting Action Fund

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: Save Voting Action Fund
Amount: $4,050,000 in 2020

What is the Safe Voting Action Fund?

The Safe Voting Action Fund is a fiscally sponsored project of Sixteen Thirty Fund. Safe Voting Action Fund supported federal and state advocacy efforts to implement election reforms that prioritized health, safety, and accessibility in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Why do we think this project is important?

COVID-19 necessitated unprecedented changes to election administration in 2020. It was critical to ensure that voting was safe and accessible for eligible voters across the country. Safe in-person and early voting options, as well as increased vote-by-mail, were key ways to safeguard voting access during the pandemic. The Safe Voting Action Fund supported efforts to promote these policy changes and to ensure that they were implemented effectively.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting the Safe Voting Action Fund?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $4,050,000 to the Safe Voting Action Fund.

 

New Florida Majority

Type of Activity: General Operating Support
Grantee: New Florida Majority
Amount: $250,000 in 2020 over 18 months

What is the New Florida Majority?

The New Florida Majority is an independent political organization working to increase the voting and political power of marginalized and excluded constituencies in Florida.

Why do we think this organization is important?

The New Florida Majority is a multiracial, racial justice political organization working to train grassroots citizens to be leaders, mobilize communities to vote, educate the public to share their values, and inspire Floridians to take action toward their dreams. New Florida Majority actively works to be a force of progressive change in Florida. Their work seeks to educate and activate Black voters and communities of color that are too often ignored in the political process. They are committed to the expansion of Florida’s electorate, especially for communities of color, increasing turnout for voters of color, and protecting the electorate against voter suppression tactics.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting the New Florida Majority?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $250,000 over 18 months to the New Florida Majority.

Media Policy Reform

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: National Newspaper Publishers Association
Amount: $50,000 in 2020

What is the National Newspaper Publishers Association?

The National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) is a trade association of the more than 200 African American-owned community newspapers from around the United States. NNPA is committed to providing its members with valuable information, opportunities, and services. They believe that communication among publishers is a key tool to improving the industry.

Why do we think this project is important?  

This grant supported the Local Journalism in America Advocacy Program, which advocated for increased government funding for local journalism in the United States. A key objective of this project in 2021 was to enhance government funding and support of the democratization of local journalism by ensuring greater diversity and inclusion in professional journalism across the nation.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly devastating for African American and other minority-owned newspapers and media companies. The Local Journalism In America Advocacy Program identified and advocated for financial support for the best practices that achieve journalistic success, innovation, and sustainability.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting National Newspaper Publishers Association?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $50,000 to the National Newspaper Publishers Association in support of the Local Journalism in America Advocacy Program project.

Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association

Type of Activity: General Operating Support
Grantee: Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association
Amount: $100,000 in 2020

What is the Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association?

Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association (MMCA) is a group of media stakeholders, influencers of color, and their allies, who share a mission of eliminating barriers to media diversity. This includes a goal of increasing diverse ownership and control of the reporting, creation, production, and distribution of news and stories on all platforms.

Why do we think this organization is important?

A strong democracy requires a diverse media landscape that reflects the voices of the communities they represent. Diverse participation in, and ownership of, media organizations ensures that important stories are not missed. Providing greater representation not only allows more audiences to see alternative viewpoints, but also allows groups and communities to see their lives and interests reflected in our national conversation.

Now in its fourth year of existence, MMCA continues to strengthen its position as an advocate and change-agent for media diversity. The focus of their efforts include community and coalition building, advocacy and awareness, industry accountability, and stakeholder assistance and collaboration.

Digital channels eliminate some of the barriers to diversity that existed on traditional platforms; however, MMCA’s research and engagement have revealed that decision maker bias and the barriers to discovery by audiences have not been removed. Consolidation, tech transformation, changes in consumer behavior, and rushed policy changes are combining to make the landscape even more difficult. MMCA’s primary goal is to help media stakeholders of color successfully navigate and thrive in this rapidly-changing new media economy and to address the barriers that still remain.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $100,000 to Multicultural Media & Correspondents Association.

Presidential Transition and Priority Setting Project

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
Amount: $350,000 in 2020

What is the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights?

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights was founded in 1950 by a coalition of civil rights activists. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, the Leadership Conference advocated for the passage of civil rights legislation in Congress. Their efforts resulted in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1957, the Civil Rights Act of 1960, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968.

Today, the Leadership Conference is a coalition of over 200 member organizations and continues to coordinate advocacy and lobbying efforts in support of legislation that protects and expands civil and human rights.

Why do we think this project is important?

As the nation faced the realities of the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism, The Leadership Conference remained vigilant in their efforts to develop a shared transition agenda that prioritized civil rights for the 117th Congress and next administration. The Leadership Conference has a long history of playing a leading role in debates over legislation affecting civil and human rights. The long-term goal of this work is to ensure the perspectives and concerns of the civil and human rights community are represented in legislation and administrative actions.

The agenda was developed in close collaboration with The Leadership Conference’s eleven issue-based task forces and aimed to align coalition priorities on agenda content. Their task forces are made up of coalition members with expertise in areas such as the census, education, employment, fair courts, fair housing and lending, hate crimes, health care, immigration, justice reform, media and telecommunications, and voting rights. The Leadership Conference collaboratively refined priorities suggested by the task forces into one coherent and consistent document that was presented to a Congressional and Executive audience, and provided as an educational resource for the general public.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $350,000 to the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Type of Activity: General Operating Support
Grantee: Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
Amount: $175,000 in 2020 over two years.

What is the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights?

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights was founded in 1950 by a coalition of civil rights activists. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, the Leadership Conference advocated for the passage of civil rights legislation in Congress. Their efforts resulted in the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1957, the Civil Rights Act of 1960, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968.

Today, the Leadership Conference is a coalition of over 200 member organizations and continues to coordinate advocacy and lobbying efforts in support of legislation that protects and expands civil and human rights.

Why do we think this organization is important?

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights’ work to organize civil rights organizations through their Civil Rights, Privacy, and Technology Table and Media/Telecommunications Task Force directly supports the types of coordination needed to improve human rights data policy grounded in racial justice and gender equity. Their extensive history and expertise in this area makes them uniquely positioned to coordinate civil rights advocacy at multiple levels.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a two year grant of $175,000 to the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

Free Press Action Fund

Type of Activity: General Operating Support
Grantee: Free Press Action Fund
Amount: $275,000 in 2020

What is Free Press Action Fund?

Free Press Action is a nonpartisan 501(c)(4) advocacy organization that seeks to change the media to transform democracy to realize a just society. They believe that social change, racial justice and meaningful engagement in public life require equitable access to technology, diverse ownership of media platforms, and journalism that holds leaders accountable and tells people what’s actually happening in their communities. They work to safeguard a free and open internet, curb runaway media consolidation, protect press freedom and ensure diverse voices are represented in our media.

Why do we think this organization is important?

Free Press Action is a nonpartisan 501(c)(4) advocacy organization that seeks to change the media to transform democracy to realize a just society. They believe that social change, racial justice and meaningful engagement in public life require equitable access to technology, diverse ownership of media platforms, and journalism that holds leaders accountable and tells people what’s actually happening in their communities. They work to safeguard a free and open internet, curb runaway media consolidation, protect press freedom and ensure diverse voices are represented in our media.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Free Press Action Fund?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $275,000 to Free Press Action Fund. In 2021, an amendment was approved to increase the amount of the grant to $600,000. 

Fight Back Table Action

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: Fight Back Table Action
Amount: $475,000 in 2020

What is the Fight Back Table Action?

Fight Back Table Action (FBT), a fiscally sponsored project of Tides Advocacy, is a multi-racial movement coalition of civil rights organizations, activist networks, and organizing networks. The Democracy Defense Coalition, a project of Fight Back Table Action, coordinated advocacy and communications work done to prepare voters for an unprecedented election, expose voter suppression efforts, and ensure officials commit to counting every vote.

Why do we think this project is important?

Fight Back Table Action’s scenario planning allowed coalition partners to engage their members in strategy development and preparation for various contested election scenarios. With the unpredictable consequences of COVID-19 affecting voting, in addition to the misinformation and disinformation circulated among popular sources of information, and regular voter suppression tactics, there was a very real need to prepare for potential violence or voter intimidation aimed at communities of color on Election Day. Fight Back Table Action worked with other organizations to coordinate analysis and planning across organizing networks, major institutional actors, activist networks, and civil rights groups.

These networks offered critical national leadership voices, a wide range of relationships, millions of willing volunteers, and authentic connections to leading state organizations, particularly in the communities of color most affected by an election crisis.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Fight Back Table Action?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $475,000 to Fight Back Table Action.  

Economic Democracy Program

Type of Activity: Project
Grantee: Dēmos: A Network for Ideas and Action LTD
Amount: $75,000 in 2020

What is Dēmos: A Network for Ideas and Action LTD?

Dēmos identifies as a “think and do tank” that works to create a democracy and economy rooted in racial equity, using cutting-edge policy research, inspiring litigation, and deep relationships with grassroots organizations.

Why do we think the Economic Democracy program is important?

Dēmos believes there is a critical need to go beyond voting and direct representation by elected officials to rebuild trust to create more meaningful opportunities for Black and brown people and communities to participate in democracy in their communities, in their workplaces, and across all aspects of their daily lives. This program seeks to identify and promote practices for civic engagement across these arenas.

How is Democracy Fund Voice supporting Dēmos: A Network for Ideas and Action LTD?

In 2020, Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of $75,000 to Dēmos: A Network for Ideas and Action LTD.