Maine Community Foundation awards 14 grants through Leaders of Color program
Fourteen nonprofit leaders of color from across Maine have been awarded grants from the Maine Community Foundation’s Investing in Leaders of Color program.
The nonprofits serve communities of color and promote racial equity in Maine.
Desiree Vargas is a co-founder of Racial Equity and Justice and received one of the grants. Vargas says her organization worked with the city of Bangor to start a human rights and equity committee in 2020 that has made strides in addressing pressing issues.
"We looked at bodycam issues with the police department and issues with unhoused folks in Bangor and some other diversity issues," she says.
Vargas says Racial Equity and Justice has made strides but there's more to be done.
"Since then we've done a lot of work as an organization, from advocacy to discrimination to redistributing resources to underrepresented communities and being able to provide food, medicine, gardening programs and retreats for communities of color," she says.
Vargas says she will use the foundation grant to receive professional coaching on organizational leadership to further the goals of Racial Equity and Justice.
Since 2019, the Maine Community Foundation has enabled 35 leaders of 27 nonprofits to complete the Investing in Leaders of Color Program.