Racial Equity

How can the field of philanthropy partner with Caribbean communities?


Dana François, WKKF’s program officer for family economic security in Haiti, was the featured keynote speaker during the Caribbean session at Black Philanthropy Month’s 2022 Annual Summit. A global celebration and campaign to elevate African-descent funding, Black Philanthropy Month (BPM) is recognized by the United Nations and over 35 government bodies.

"We are in a good moment of history to really think about…the different patterns, structures and practices that philanthropy needs to hone in on, so that we can reach the outcomes we're all striving for and that [Black and Caribbean] communities require to exercise their agency and self-sufficiency."

François highlighted roles and opportunities for philanthropy in the Caribbean, including:

  • Fund leaders, local institutions and systems change strategies that are deeply connected to their communities, supporting representation, leadership and long-term action;
  • Make it easier to access funding and resources by coordinating efforts to reduce funding gaps for local institutions, led by local talent;
  • Provide unrestricted resources that support reparative actions in communities of color and throughout the world;
  • Leverage assets, payout and tools to catalyze impact investing, blended finance for greater reach, systems transformation and impact;
  • Fund community self-determination and systems-level efforts, in creating and strengthening local institutions, infrastructure, systems and access the resources necessary to redress racial, power and social inequities.
  • Transfer decision-making and resource allocation power – hire Black people and other people of color at executive levels, within the management of funds, and appoint board positions with a mindset of decolonization and culture shifting;
  • Serve as checks and balances in development – call out inequities, share knowledge and power, provide platforms, serve as connectors and hold governments and global institutions accountable for change;

Check out François’ speech and learn more about how philanthropic leaders can ally with Black communities across the Caribbean.


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