20 ways majority-white nonprofits can build authentic partnerships with organizations led by communities of color by Nonprofit AF
These are the 4 broad topics. Click on the article to read the 20 ways.
Increase your knowledge and self-awareness: Do not go into a community without doing some research on the community and self-reflection on the potential dynamics you may be contributing to. It is actually extremely irritating and not helpful when busy leaders of color have to stop their work to explain basic concepts to potential partners. You don’t go to a job interview without doing some research on the organization you’re applying to, and you don’t call up a foundation to ask questions about a grant without at least perusing their website. Apply the same principle here.
Provide resources, don’t ask people to do stuff for free: One of the most irritating things we face as organizations led by communities of color face is getting asked to do people’s work for free, under the well-intentioned but misguided idea of partnership. We get asked to provide outreach, translation, interpretation, and expertise, and people are shocked when we ask for compensation. If you want authentic partnership though, awareness is not enough; funding distribution must be equitable:
Use your privilege to help partner orgs fulfill their missions: One thing that white allies and majority-white organizations have that many POC and POC-led organizations do not have are connections to funders and donors, as well as a higher level of trust among the public. Use your privilege and influence to help communities-of-color-led organizations:
Know when to step back: Just as actions are important, so is knowing when to step back and allow partner organizations the space to breathe, as well as the opportunity for resources and influence that would otherwise go to you and your organization.