Robin Hood To Back Black-Led Nonprofits

Robin Hood Foundation, the Wall Street-backed nonprofit that funds poverty fighting programs and charter schools in New York City, plans a new $10-million fund dedicated to financing nonprofits run by people of color.

The “Power Fund” already has seed capital of $10 million from the likes of Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan. Robin Hood President and CEO Wes Moore told CNBC that only 10 percent of philanthropic contributions go to groups led by people of color, leading the foundation to establish the new fund.

“The Power Fund aims to support and elevate opportunities for leaders of color who are running nonprofit organizations that share Robin Hood’s mission of increasing mobility from poverty,” according to a tweet from Robin Hood. “This initiative will seek to expand our funding to significantly increase leaders-of-color-led organizations amongst our grantees, while providing self-directed leadership and capacity-building funding to ensure their long-term success.”

Robin Hood reported total revenue of $133 million, including almost $58 million from fundraising events, and grants paid of $173 million for the year ending 2018, according to the latest available Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Form 990. Despite expenses outpacing revenues, Robin Hood reported net assets of $269 million, down from $334 million in 2017.

The Board of Directors covers all of the organization’s administrative and fundraising costs, so 100 percent of all donations without donor restrictions from the public go directly to organizations helping New Yorkers in need. Board contributions made up $56 million of the $145 million in revenue reported in the organization’s financial statements for 2018.

Goldman Sachs recently launched the Goldman Sachs Fund for Racial Equity, supported by $10 million from Goldman Sachs Gives, a donor-advised fund (DAF) in which current and retired senior employees can recommend grants to qualifying nonprofits. The company will match employee contributions to recipient organizations dollar for dollar, with donations of $25 or less matched three to one.