$25K grants available to develop ideas on a 'racially just' Oakland

People in Oakland protest the death of George Floyd.

The city of Oakland and nonprofit partners are offering grants of up to $25,000 for people of color to develop ideas for what a racially just Oakland could look like.

The "Belonging In Oakland: A Just City Cultural Fund" is a multi-year partnership between the city's Cultural Affairs Division, the East Bay Community Foundation and the Akonadi Foundation to encourage "cultural practioners" like artists, craftspeople and other creative people to develop ideas.

The guidelines for the grant say the money -- $300,000 for up to 12 $25,000 grants -- is meant to help the cultural sector of communities of color.

"In its first year, this program will offer Reflect & Reimagine grants to support the sector as it navigates these uncertain waters and dreams of the tools, methods, and solutions not only for keeping our most vulnerable communities afloat, but visions for their ability to thrive," the guidelines say.

Applications for the grants will be accepted through July 13, and the awards will be announced by mid-August. Applicants must be cultural practioners of color based in Oakland or an Oakland-based cultural organization led by people of color. More information about the program can be found here.

 "Our city's rich arts and culture scene provides a voice to express pain, frustration and discontent at the injustices of the biases embedded in our society and government," Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said in a news release.

Lateefah Simon, president of the Akonadi Foundation and also president of the BART Board of Directors, said, "The extraordinary power of arts and culture shine a fresh light on injustice, build solidarity, and help us imagine -- and work toward -- a better future for whole communities."