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Cincinnati Black Giving Circle 2021


The Cincinnati Black Giving Circle is a coalition of donors with shared cultural roots and hunger to disrupt philanthropy’s barriers to social change. To direct their philanthropic giving more purposefully, these individuals pool their dollars to provide strategic grants to Black-led and Black-serving nonprofits routinely neglected by traditional philanthropy.


The Cincinnati Black Giving Circle allows African American donors to use their leadership qualities, financial assets, and social capital to clear away barriers to engagement and philanthropy that marginalize grassroots organizations. Additionally, donors’ insights and cultural competencies foster mutual trust, uncover barriers to success, and create a safe space for honesty not often experienced in philanthropy.


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Moreover, Black-led and Black-serving nonprofits receiving funds and resources from Black donors enable organizations to expand their connections or diversify their donor base. Contributions from Black giving circles also help dispel false narratives about who gives and influences systematic segregation, disparities, and equality in their communities.


Through lived experiences, cultural connections, and proximity to the local African American community, the Cincinnati Black Giving Circle is accelerating Black-led social change and intensifying the collective influence of its donors.


For more information about the Cincinnati Black Giving Circle and grant award opportunities, contact Robert Killins at [email protected].



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2021 Cincinnati Black Giving Circle Awards

The 2021 Cincinnati Black Giving Circle Fund, housed at the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, granted $115,000 to six Black-led and Black-serving nonprofits.


Found Village

Found Village, a welcoming place connecting teens who have faced traumas to audacious and intentional resources, received a $25,000 grant to support staff coordinating volunteers and coaching and mentoring youth.


Rosemary’s Babies

Rosemary’s Babies, a safe space that provides educational and financial support for pre-teen and teen parents and their families, received a $20,000 grant to support staff salaries and operational overhead.


The DAD. Initiative

The DAD. The initiative, which readies children of color for a successful future by teaching essential skills not traditionally offered in schools, received a $20,000 grant to support staff contracts.


Cincinnati Preschool Promise

Cincinnati Preschool Promise, which ensures equitable access to high-quality preschools and better preparation for future schooling, received a $20,000 grant to provide business services to in-home childcare providers owned mainly by Black women and men.


Ohio Justice Policy Center

Ohio Justice Policy Center (OJPC), a nonprofit law firm that relentlessly advocates for fair and equal justice by offering free legal services, received a $15,000 grant to provide legal services for single mothers pursuing their secondary education.


Housing Opportunities Made Equal

Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME), which advocates and enforces housing regulations, received a $15,000 grant to provide families with legal support to maintain stable and healthy housing amidst heightened economic instability.



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About Greater Cincinnati Foundation

As the region’s leading community foundation, Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) connects people with a purpose in an eight-county region in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. GCF is leading the charge toward a more vibrant Greater Cincinnati for everyone — now and for future generations. For more information, visit


History of Black Giving Circles

Acts of kindness have been deeply ingrained in the Black culture since we arrived on American soil, revealed through the bond of shared humanity. After Emancipation, Black Americans formed giving circles of friends and colleagues by pooling their charitable resources to fund social sustainability and resistance. Beneficiaries were pillars in the Black community – newspapers, churches, hospitals, banks, schools, and colleges.


Rarely acknowledged as philanthropy, centuries-old cultural customs, and beliefs continue to impact lives and communities. Giving circles, small and large, grouped by professional, political, fraternal, and civic affiliations, remain a significant funding source for Black institutions to enrich the quality of life, specifically in Black communities.


Societal realities of today require Black giving to expand from donations to beloved Black institutions to establishing a collective fund to lead social change for people of African descent. Where racism is mounting, and economic rifts are widening, participation in giving circles is attracting growing numbers of Black Americans across the United States.



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Written by: Crystal Kendrick


The Voice of Black Cincinnati is a media company designed to educate, recognize, and create opportunities for African Americans. Want to find local news, events, job postings, scholarships, and a database of local Black-owned businesses? Visit our homepage, explore other articles, subscribe to our newsletter, like our Facebook page, join our Facebook group, and text VOBC to 513-270-3880.


Black Giving Circle image provided by Adobe Stock

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Written by Crystal Kendrick

Crystal Kendrick is the publisher of The Voice of Black Cincinnati. With a vision to educate, recognize and create opportunities for African Americans in the region, Crystal oversees all content creation and publication, ensuring each piece aligns with the outlet's mission to inform, engage, and inspire. A lifelong advocate for community engagement and empowerment, Crystal's leadership steers The Voice of Black Cincinnati toward being a pivotal platform to find community resources, local Black-owned businesses, culturally relevant events, jobs with equal opportunity employers and scholarship for higher education. Connect with Crystal on LinkedIn to explore her experiences and contributions to Cincinnati's media landscape.

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