Hi, I'm Jeri! I'm so glad you're here.

Why?

As a 20 + year cultural work nonprofit arts leader, I have always felt strongly that as a community, we can build clear and direct pathways that connect Black artists, Black-led arts organizations, and Black-owned art galleries with Black donors. I feel this way because I see firsthand the myriad of Black donors eager to connect to Black artists and the process of making Black art; however, few are invited to do so.

   

I have an idea why. However, I have learned a few things. One is not to assume anything, so I figured I would inquire. I would use my skill set to speak directly to our community to learn how to best honor and support stories told by us and for us. 

 

How do we do this?

  

We are keenly aware that the Black community has a long, powerful, and rich legacy of giving. However, our individual and collective contributions are often overlooked and underestimated. Black philanthropic donors are rendered almost invisible by euro-centered nonprofit arts institutions until our presence becomes beneficial to the performative ally narrative they wish to present. All while actively participating in intrinsically racist fundraising systems they say they stand against. 

The Black Donors Project aims to investigate ways that we may collectively and measurably drive charitable giving toward Black art and Black artists while honoring the legacy, preferences, and practices of Black support. 
    

How you can help.

  

You could aid efforts greatly by: 

  • Forward the Black Donors Project survey to as many people as you can 

  • Subscribe to updates 

  

Then what? 

The fundraising field fails to investigate the capacity and willingness of communities of color to support the arts in ways that will edify the art world and dispel the mythology that drives racial disparities in and across the universe of giving and philanthropy. 

 
With your help, the plan is to survey and gather feedback from Black donors at all giving levels and then share our findings with the Black arts community. Through the BDP's data collection processes, the goal is to build competency and identify capacity within the nonprofit sector to go beyond the optics and include communities of color. 

 
The Black Donors Project is designed to generate the tools and resources to make sustainable connections between the Black art world and an equitable and inclusive universe of giving and support. 

  

I look forward to embarking on this journey and discovering new pathways together.  

  

Warmly, 

  

Jeri Rayon 

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