A new nonprofit organization is seeking nominations for changemakers in Kansas City’s Black and Latinx communities ahead of a Nov. 30 deadline. One individual will be awarded $20,000 in support of their efforts.
“We’re specifically targeting grassroot changemakers who don’t have any more than $250,000 in their annual operating budget. We really want to invest and support an expansion of the great efforts that are happening in our Black and Latino communities,” said Avrell Stokes, president and co-founder of BeGreat Together.
Click here to check out BeGreat Together.
BeGreat Together officially launched in September with a kickoff initiative that supports changemakers, as well as public schools in Kansas City.
Along with the $20,000 grant to an individual within the Kansas City community, BeGreat Together plans to award two $10,000 grants to two local K-12 public school programs. Organizers are looking for innovative programs — or program ideas — that aim to improve the educational experience and environment for students in historically disinvested areas.
“The goal of the organization is to elevate Black-led and Latinx-led endeavors by supporting local changemakers and by investing in future leaders within the public school system,” explained Stokes, who co-founded the nonprofit with Cortney Woodruff, Cortez Bryant and Jesse Williams.
A majority of BeGreat Together’s funding for grants comes from individual donors and a few corporate donors, Stokes noted.
“[BeGreat Together] is here to provide opportunities for those who want to support and fund Black and Latino communities, but don’t know where to go,” Stokes said. “We are trying to make funding more accessible and provide additional avenues.”
Nominations for changemakers and school programs are open until Nov. 30. Entrepreneurs, teachers, activists and anyone passionate about making a positive change can be nominated for the grant, Stokes urged.
“We are really looking forward to hearing about how people from the community have made an impact in the lives of others,” he shared.
Click here to nominate a community changemaker or K-12 school.
BeGreat Together is headquartered in Kansas City, but the nonprofit is in the works of expanding to Houston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, Seattle, Washington D.C. and Jackson, Mississippi, Stokes said.
“There are several really great initiatives and efforts going on in our schools and communities,” he acknowledged. “We see ourselves at BeGreat as joining a broader movement that will hopefully continue to expand.”
To further support education in minority communities, BeGreat Together is also launching an online tech learning platform called Assemble.
Assemble goes beyond the K-12 system and provides individuals with career courses from BIPOC innovators and leaders across various industries.
Assemble will be launching later this month.
Click here to sign up to receive an email on the coming launch.
This story is possible thanks to support from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan foundation that works together with communities in education and entrepreneurship to create uncommon solutions and empower people to shape their futures and be successful.