Programs Section


The Foundation will periodically circulate requests for proposals or calls for letters of interest. The Foundation will continue to be national in scope, with organizations in the West, Midwest, and Southwest considered in the spring and those in the East and Southeast in the fall. Only those invited by the Foundation to apply will be eligible to submit proposals. Organizations wishing to be considered as prospective applicants may submit information via email to hazen@hazenfoundation.org or here.

The Edward W. Hazen Foundation supports two categories of organizations: those that organize for educational justice and those that engage young people in middle and high school to organize for racial and social equity. Clearly there will be overlap between these two groups, i.e. those in which young people are focusing on education as the target of their action, but groups that fit either category may be eligible for consideration. All prospective grantees will ground their action in the leadership and experiences of those closest to the issues, young people of color, their families and communities. They will articulate an understanding of structural oppression based on race and class and engage in campaigns that have the potential to fundamentally shift policy and discourse on racial and social equity.

The Foundation will seek to support organizations that have:

  • Engaged in substantial organizing campaigns with systemic objectives;
  • Evidence of effectiveness at increasing power by building a broad and diverse base, partnering with key stakeholders and has a cogent analysis of the landscape including decision makers, allies, experts, opposition and strategic opportunities;
  • A history and trajectory of accomplishment in pursuing racial justice goals in education (for adult and/or youth constituencies) and/or other issues affecting youth of color (for youth constituencies);
  • A strategic analysis of structural racism and the underpinnings of racial oppression and its intersections with factors such as gender, gender identity, economic class, and age;
  • The ability to identify measurable policy objectives that are ambitious and reflect that analysis and the needs and interests of young people, their families and communities;
  • A strategy for building power and developing authentic leadership among constituents;
  • The potential to engage in a long term learning agenda that will deepen the impact of racial justice organizing;
  • The financial and human resources are sufficient to carry out the work described and financial projections that are reasonable in the current funding environment.

We will seek organizations that have demonstrated both an internal and external practice — integrating a structural racism analysis externally into its programs, policy or advocacy campaigns, its communications, and its alliance or movement building strategy. Some characteristics we will look for that promote racial justice goals internally might include:

  • Organization is transparent in its internal conversations about power and privilege in decision-making and governance. Those conversations are occurring at the member, staff, and leadership level.
  • Organization’s leadership training includes an analysis of structural racism and supports the development of skills and strategies that advance racial justice and institutional change.
  • Organization’s analysis is reflected in its mission, values, and principles.
  • Organization defines issues that reflect a critique of racism and lead to demands for structural solutions.

In order to determine how an organization has put its racial justice/structural racism analysis into practice externally, we will look for practices such as:

  • Organization is framing issues or shifting the paradigm to include a structural racism or racial justice analysis:
    • Explicitly communicates issues with a structural racism analysis;
    • Racial analysis includes an understanding of the relationship between history, culture and politics;
    • Ties their power analysis to their racial analysis;
    • Challenges multiple/interlocking institutions;
    • Practicing new ways of highlighting the racial dynamics of social issues.
  • Organization is using a structural racism analysis in its policy campaigns:
    • Organization’s understanding and articulation of issues rests on an analysis of institutional and structural racism and defines demands for external and policy change that communicate that understanding.
    • There is a plan for racial equity advocacy;
    • There is a strategy for deflecting external demands to prove that racial discrimination is intentional, focusing more on impact than intent, or to push race neutral policies such as those that use poverty as a proxy for race;
    • Organization collects data by race and/or disaggregates data by race whenever possible; and
    • Organization uses racial equity impact assessments to anticipate what might be the racial justice impacts of proposed policies.
  • Organization is focusing on and is accountable for racial justice outcomes. Outcomes may be identified by behavior changes – individual actions that collectively show evidence that they are contributing to changes in culture, systems, etc.
  • Organization is a member of cohesive, cross-racial alliances that prioritize leadership in communities of color. The Organization has both tactical allies focused on specific short- term goals, and strategic allies based on a shared world- view and long-term goals.