Our grantees

Our grantees

2021 Community impact and equity partners

Our 2021 Community Impact Fund Grantees

Three months after unveiling its LIVE UNITED 2025 strategic plan, United Way of Rhode Island is putting $4.5 million in grants to work in the community to create transformational change in the Ocean State. The funding, the first in a two-year grant cycle, was awarded to  72 organizations in support of programs targeting the root causes of the racial inequities that have held back Rhode Island’s Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities for generations.

Invested in our strategic plan

2021 Community Impact and Equity Partners

Thanks to our donors and partners, United Way of Rhode Island is supporting organizations that are on the front lines of building racial equity and opportunities for all Rhode Islanders. Grantees are organized by area of impact.

Lift United

• Beautiful Day
• DARE (Direct Action for Rights and Equality)
• Foster Forward
• Fuerza Laboral
• Genesis Center
• Higher Ground International
• House of Hope CDC
• Local Initiatives Support Corporation
• Lucy’s Hearth
• Man Up, Inc.
• Mental Health Assoc. of Rhode Island
• Nonviolence Institute
• One Neighborhood Builders
• Providence Revolving Fund
• Refugee Dream Center
• Rhode Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
• Rhode Island Legal Services, Inc.
• Sojourner House
• The Rhode Island Center for Justice
• West Bay Collaborative
• Woonsocket Neighborhood Development Corporation d/b/a NeighborWorks Blackstone River Valley
• YouthBuild Preparatory Academy

Achieve United

• A Leadership Journey
• AS220
• Books Are Wings
• Boys & Girls Clubs of Northern Rhode Island
• Children and Youth Cabinet of RI at TSNE MissionWorks
• DownCity Design
• FabNewport / PVD Young Makers
• Festival Ballet Providence
• FRIENDS WAY, Inc.
• Fund for UCAP on behalf of The UCAP School
• Highlander Charter School
• Oasis International
• OCYL: The Mayor's Office of Children, Youth and Learning
• Providence After School Alliance, Inc.
• Providence ¡CityArts! for Youth
• Rhode Island Black Storytellers
• Rhode Island Parent Information Network
• Rhode Island Urban Debate League
• Riverzedge Arts
• Roger Williams Park Zoo
• The Learning Community

Advocate United / Lift United

• Center for Health and Justice Transformation at The Miriam Hospital
• Center For Southeast Asians
• Childhood Lead Action Project
• College Unbound
• Coyote RI
• Economic Progress Institute
• Generation Citizen
• Grow Smart RI
• Housing Network of Rhode Island
• HousingWorks RI at RWU
• Latino Policy Institute at RWU
• OpenDoors
• Parents Leading for Educational Equity (PLEE)
• Pawtucket Central Falls Development Corporation
• Progreso Latino, Inc.
• Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence
• Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless
• Rhode Island Interfaith Coalition to Reduce Poverty
• SISTA Fire /Project South
• West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation
• Woonasquatucket River Watershed Council

Achieve United / Advocate United

• Movement Education Outdoors
• Young Voices

Achieve United / Lift United

• Federal Hill House
• New Urban Arts
• The Manton Avenue Project

Achieve United / Advocate United / Lift United

• Global Science Envirotech, Inc.
• Southside Community Land Trust
• Youth In Action

Featured 2021 Community Impact Fund grantees

SistaFire

Sistafire

In Rhode Island, women and non-binary people of color are the backbones of our families and our communities. As caregivers, frontline workers, educators and visionaries within our neighborhoods, we see what is possible and fight for justice. But despite the strength and vision we hold for our communities, we face the compounding challenges of structural racism and gender violence. At SISTA Fire, one of the areas we’re fighting to change is birth outcomes for Black women, women of color, and their children through a community accountability process.

– Alexa Barriga, Organizing Coordinator

sistafireri.org

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Fuerza Laboral

We need businesses in our community to have more human capital, civic engagement, and stronger social ties and principles. Workers’ Cooperatives does that. This award from the United Way will allow us to continue our path of success and create a meaningful Economic and Social Impact.

–Heiny Maldonado, Executive Director

fuerza-laboral.org

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FabNewport

We are working in partnership to build an ecosystem of learning using the Providence libraries as hubs for youth to launch their lives. The addition of two coaches focused on building relationships will allow us to connect with more students. Relationships are at the heart of good learning. If our youth feel safe, and they feel like they belong, anything is possible. 

Our goal is for students to develop the skills, confidence and commitment so they can make a positive impact on their communities and make their lives.

–Steve Heath, Executive Director

fabnewport.org

YIA-Workshop1a

Youth in action

We understand the need and effectiveness of having youth in decision-making positions of power, representing themselves in all of the places that impact them. This funding allows us to expand the team to create more equitable workloads, maintain and expand youth team salaries, and increase equity in the pay of our adult leadership, who are representative of the populations we serve. This will allow us to go deeper and reach new communities that we didn't have the capacity to do before, expanding youth leadership throughout Rhode Island.

–Elliot A. Rivera, Executive Director

youthinactionri.org

Lisa Guillette is the executive director of Foster Forward.JOHN TLUMACKI/GLOBE STAFF

Zoning laws hindering housing construction

The Boston Globe

"Cortney Nicolato, the CEO of United Way of Rhode Island and another member of the special legislative commission, said most of the state’s land use enabling legislation was written in 1991... 'When you have 100 amendments in a 30-year legislation, it's clearly not working... The housing crisis cannot be truly transformed until we tackle systemic barriers, like zoning laws and land use.'"

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McKee is proposing $250M for housing

McKee Proposes $250 Million for Housing

GoLocalProv

"Our state's housing crisis is significant and must be a priority in the budget. But just as important, the investment needs to combine with transformational change in the systems surrounding housing as a whole," said Cortney Nicolato, president and CEO of United Way of Rhode Island.

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Thumbnail with side-by-side images of WPRI's Kim Kalunian (left) and United Way of Rhode Island's Kyle Bennett (right) with the headline, "COMMUNITY FOCUS: INTERVIEW WITH THE UNITED WAY."

Community Focus: United Way/Kyle Bennett

WPRI 12

"Director of Policy and Equity for United Way of Rhode Island Kyle Bennett joined 12 News at 4 to discuss the Good Neighbor Energy Fund, how many families benefited from it, and what residents can do to help."

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Voting Begins for Nonprofit Innovation Lab

“Following months of honing their innovative ideas to create positive social impact in our state, leaders of six nonprofits will make their pitch to Rhode Islanders via brief videos in hopes of winning the Public Choice Award of the Nonprofit Innovation Lab. The voting opens Jan. 19 and ends on Jan. 24, with the winning organization receiving $5,000 in funding.”

Leaders Selected for ED Learning Circle

“Leaders of 11 local nonprofits have been selected by United Way of Rhode Island as fellows for its next Executive Director Learning Circle series. The year-long program takes an innovative approach to building the capacity of, and strengthening, the state’s nonprofit sector.”

211: On the Line

“It’s been very, very difficult at times,” shares Evelyn Cabrera, a senior community resource specialist and team leader for United Way 211 in Rhode Island. “But I couldn’t be more proud of our work and the ways we’ve been there to help our fellow Rhode Islanders throughout this crisis.”

UPCOMING EVENTS

National 211 Day Celebration

Join United Way of Rhode Island for our National 211 Day Celebration on Friday, Feb. 11 from 9:30 - 10:30 a.m. Together, we're celebrating our 211 team who is always there, our donors who make it possible to answer each call, and our community partners who help callers get the services they need. This is a free, virtual event.

REGISTER

Equity Challenge 2022

Ready to learn more about racial equity? Join our Equity Challenge 2022. You can start when we launch on Feb. 28, 2022 or anytime after that. After registering, you'll receive an email each weekday for three weeks with resources, reflection questions, and actions you can take to help create a more equitable Rhode Island.

REGISTER