BLM Impact Report Shows Network’s Strength, Fundraising

The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF) generated $90 million in revenue $30 at a time during 2020, according to its Black Lives Matter 2020 Impact Report.

The report offered a look at the finances and operations of the BLMGNF, as well affiliated organizations the Black Lives Matter Political Action Committee and Black Lives Matter Grassroots.

“BLMGNF has decided to fully lean into its capacity as a fundraising body, grantmaking entity, amplifier, and action-oriented think tank of the movement,” Black Lives Matter Executive Director Patrisse Cullors wrote in the report.

The nearly 20 chapters in its network, and the grassroots work they do, have coalesced under what Cullors called “a sister organization,” Black Lives Matter Grassroots. Another arm of the movement, the Black Lives Matter Political Action Committee, was formed in October 2020 and has played a role in both the 2020 general election and the two Senate runoff elections held in Georgia in early 2021.

According to data in the report, the average donation that made up the $90 million BLMGNF raised was $30.64. More than 10 percent of its donations were recurring. BLMGNF distributed $21.7 million — 23 percent of total assets — in grants to 33 organizations and Black Lives Matter chapters. The organization reported $8.4 million in operating expenses. At the end of the year, after expenses and grant distributions, the organization had a balance of roughly $60 million.

During 2020, BLMGNF’s email list swelled from 42,878 recipients to just less than 2 million recipients by the end of the year. BLMGNF sent more than 127 million emails containing information, action requests, and fundraising pitches.

One email in particular, a single effort sent on Giving Tuesday (Dec. 1, 2020) generated $82,745.88, which was split equally among six local organizations whose missions reflect that of the BLMGNF: COFED, which provides food to poor and working class communities by aligning with farmers and food co-ops; Chicago-based Cure Violence Global, a conflict-resolution organization; KC Tenants, which provides safe and affordable homes for poor and working class tenants in Kansas City, Mo.; Lead to Life, an Oakland-based multi-locale collective of black and queer artists, healers and ecologists; Baltimore-based National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network; and Atlanta’s Urban Youth Harp Ensemble.

Separately, the BLM PAC raised $1.05 million between its inception on Oct. 9, 2020 and the end of the year and spent $746,000 on a variety of voter information and turnout actions.

Money alone does not tell the story of BLMGNF’s strength. The organization has blossomed as an information resource. In 2019, the BLMGNF website had more than one million visitors. While site clicks remained stable during the first half of 2020, during the second half, after the summer protests, the site recorded more than 24 million visitors. The organization boasts more than 4.3 million Instagram followers, 1 million twitter followers and 750,000 Facebook followers.

In summing up the organization’s growth, the impact report stated “We are no longer a small, scrappy movement. We are an institution. We are mature. We are a growing entity developing its stake in the philanthropic world. We are entering spaces previously unimaginable.”