Highlands 3:23 Fund – BIPOC Initiative
The Highlands 3:23 Fund, our Donor Advised Fund housed at Impact Assets in Baltimore, was opened in 2018 specifically to provide integrated capital for businesses and non-profits run by African American, Indigenous, and other People of Color including Latinex and Asian/Pacific Islanders. This low-cost, patient capital is often paired with small grants to support operations, development, expansion or capacity building.
The initiative was conceived in 2018 during the RSF ICF Fellowship, now called the Just Economy Institute (JEI), with special thanks to the facilitators and staff, and huge gratitude to the fellows – powerful women and men working with boldness, honesty, grace, and wisdom, to end systemic racism and its legacies of social, environmental, and economic inequity.
The name of the Highlands 3:23 Fund was inspired by the poem “Heiroglyphic Stairway” by Drew Dellinger:
it’s 3:23 in the morning
and I’m awake
because my great great grandchildren
won’t let me sleep
my great great grandchildren
ask me in dreams
what did you do while the planet was plundered?
what did you do when the earth was unraveling?
surely you did something
when the seasons started failing?
as the mammals, reptiles, birds were all dying?
did you fill the streets with protest
when democracy was stolen?
what did you do
– Drew Dellinger
Hear Mr. Dellinger read this and the rest of the poem here (thanks Bioneers)
Highlands 3:23 Grantees and Investees
Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) – Richmond, CA and Oakland, CA
Appalachian Impact Fund (Foundation for Appalachia, Kentucky) – KY
Boston Impact Initiative – Boston, MA
California Indian Nations College (CINC) – Palm Desert, CA
ConnectUP! MN – Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN
DC Central Kitchen – Washington DC
Fighting Back Partnership – Vallejo, CA
Kapor Capital (Fund III) – Oakland, CA
Native American Natural Foods (Tanka Bars) – Pine Ridge, SD
Native Conservancy – Anchorage, AK
Oweesta Corporation – Longmont, CO
People’s Land Fund – Watsonville, CA
Reciprocity Fund – Latin America, Southeast Asia