Way to Rise Fund
340 S Lemon Ave #1940 | Walnut, CA 91789
from the foundation’s website:
Way to Rise funds 501(c)3 organizations recommended in the Plan to Win and the Plan to Govern, encompassing three main areas:
A theory focused on increasing democratic participation and training communities on what it means to govern, in order to build capacity and implement bold policy.
For Way to Rise, co-governance means ensuring communities have what they need to lead on the issues that matter to people’s lives year-round—from engaging voters in elections to building power to pass bold policies once elected officials are in office.
This includes training for elected officials and their staff and support for community-based organizations that seek to play a role in legislative sessions, drafting policy and holding elected officials accountable.
Way to Rise supports policy incubation and community power building at the state level as a pathway to national-level change. Many bold ideas being championed locally are breaking through at the national level, including criminal justice reform, housing policy, and climate justice. We need to continue this momentum to win the battle of ideas that center racial, gender, and economic justice as common values.
Additionally, the Plan to Govern, to be launched in 2020 by Way to Win LLC, is designed for strategic post-election and off-cycle investments to continue to build power and improve people’s lives. The periods between elections in some ways matter most for democracy—when there are opportunities to translate electoral victories into progressive policies, and when funding for civic engagement tends to wane.
We see the power of governance unfolding in front of us due to COVID-19, and we must strengthen the institutions and infrastructure that aim to exert progressive governance at the state and federal level.
VOTER PROTECTION AND VOTER EDUCATION
Way to Rise supports efforts that protect voters and expand access to the ballot, to ensure that every person has a vote and each vote is counted in the face of the ongoing efforts to purge and suppress voters—especially those from low income communities and communities of color. This includes voter protection policy and litigation work, the nonpartisan voter education that is needed to ensure people have the information they need to vote safely in November, and 501(c)(3) registration and mobilization. This work has become all the more critical in the era of COVID-19, when it is clear that people’s ability to vote safely in every community across the country is at stake.
Way to Rise supports work to build new narratives that are driven by the incredible leaders—most of them women and people of color—leading state-based and national work across the country. The mainstream media and dominant political discourse privilege viewpoints and strategies that uphold conventional wisdom, at the cost of systematically addressing major inequalities and issues that matter to those most impacted by injustice. We need to develop persuasive counter-narratives about our multiracial identity and common goals, as well as platforms and vehicles for dissemination to broad audiences.
Way to Rise funds key narrative-building groups nationally, state-based organizations who are increasing their capacity for communications and narrative change work, as well as a narrative change writing fellowship for movement leaders that we piloted in 2019.
In 2020, we have also launched the Latinx Justice Fund (LJF), in partnership with the Ford Foundation and Nathan Cummings Foundation. The LJF focuses on building Latinx civic, economic, and cultural power via a shared narrative framework that addresses Latinx identity and mobilizes Latinx communities across the country. Broadly, the LJF is designed to: (1) define Latinx power in the current iteration of white supremacy, (2) invest in strategic research and infrastructure to build Latinx power via shared narratives, and (3) create a community to increase funding to Latinx infrastructure.