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Goldman Sachs Announces First Round of Investments and Grants for One Million Black Women Initiative

Goldman Sachs will provide investment capital and philanthropic grants to 12 organizations nationwide. The One Million Black Women Advisory Council met on May 17 to provide strategic guidance on the scope and impact of the investments and grants.

Goldman Sachs recently announced the initial foundational grant, capital investments and philanthropic grants for the One Million Black Women initiative. This initiative has committed more than $10 billion to advance racial equity and economic opportunity by investing in Black women.

Investments and grants that champion Black women

Presently, the One Million Black Women Advisory Council consists of 17 Black business and community leaders. The council met on May 17 to provide strategic guidance on the scope and impact of the investments and grants. Additionally, Goldman Sachs conducted listening sessions in partnership with Black-women-led organizations,. These sessions engaged more than 12,000 women to determine the projects that would receive the initial round of financial support.

“The more we tell the stories, the more we measure the results so that others can learn from it, and to hold up those best practices for everyone to see, I think the possibilities for One Million Black Women are infinite,” said Valerie Jarrett, former Senior Advisor to President Obama and One Million Black Women Advisory Council member.

And the investments and grants go to…

Investment capital and philanthropic grants will be provided to the following organizations:

Housing/Household Needs

  • Archer Towers (New York, NY) will receive an investment to fund the construction of a mixed-income residential development in Jamaica, Queens. The development will consist of 181 affordable units, 424 market rate units, 13,900 square feet of retail space and 224 parking spaces. Housing is intrinsically connected to better health outcomes, economic mobility and employment prospects for Black women. This investment will provide stable, quality and affordable housing in a specifically cost-prohibitive metro area.
  • BlocPower WiFi (New York, NY) will receive an investment to expand broadband services across the Bronx and Upper Manhattan. This expansion will focus chiefly on low-income neighborhoods. The lack of affordable broadband access leads to barriers to education, employment, banking services, healthcare and social networks. .
  • Springboard To Opportunities: Magnolia Mother’s Trust (Jackson, MS) will receive a grant to fund the next iteration of the Magnolia Mother’s Trust program. The program provides Black mothers living in extreme poverty with a $1,000 monthly stipend.

Health/Wellness

  • Birth Center Equity (National) will receive a grant to support Black women-led community birth centers. Birth centers provide access to new resources that ensure Black women’s collective vitality, sustainability and growth.
  • Center for Maternal Health Equity at Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta, GA) will receive a foundational grant to directly address the disproportionate maternal mortality that Black women face in comparison to white women. Significantly, 60 percent of maternal deaths are preventable and this investment will seek to reverse this troubling statistic.
  • NYC COVID-19 Loan Facility (New York, NY) will receive an investment to fund critical staffing needs related to the COVID-19 vaccination process. The investment will also help fund patient care at New York City’s safety-net hospitals. These hospitals chiefly serve the City’s underserved Black communities.

Capital

  • Buy From A Black Woman (Atlanta, GA) will receive a grant to continue website development, social media education content, technical assistance and grant funding to small Black-women owned businesses.
  • Collab Capital Fund I (National) will receive an investment to fund investments in Black founders building innovative, high growth companies. Currently, Black women start businesses at the fastest rate of any demographic, but receive 0.27 percent of venture capital funding.
  • Columbus Urban League (Columbus, OH) will receive a grant to fund the pilot launch of Incubate Her. Incubate Her is a year-long business incubation program. This grant will surely help create meaningful change in the economic health and outlook of Black women in Central Ohio.
  • Women’s Fund of Central Ohio (Columbus, OHwill receive a grant to fund the Enduring Progress Initiative. Above all, this initiative helps to fill the systemic funding gap faced by non-profits led by women of color.

Education

  • Prosp(a)rity Project (East Palo Alto, CA) will receive a grant to fund the development of the 35*2 Free Initiative. This initiative provides personalized financial coaching and retroactive scholarships for “Prosperettes” to help manage student loan debt.
  • Sadie Collective (Washington, D.C.will receive a grant to fund the creation of high school economic clubs for young Black girls. This will also enable them to participate in the annual Federal Reserve Challenge.

Empowerment and self-agency

“What has resonated with me is how Black women have grit and toughness and the willingness to get out there and make it work,” said Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, a member of the One Million Black Women Advisory Council. “As we make these investments and grants, along with that comes agency. Our partners will have responsibility. None of this will come as a surprise to Black women who have been [sacrificing and working hard] for a couple of centuries now.”

These organizations represent the first series of projects focused on creating #BlackWomenImpact; and directly reflect the OMBW pillars of healthcare, job creation and workforce development, education, housing, digital connectivity, financial health and access to capital.

Morehouse School of Medicine President Valerie Montgomery Rice, MD, a member of the One Million Black Women Advisory Council spoke about the impact of the grant sharing her plans, “My goal for the Center for Maternal Health Equity at Morehouse School of Medicine is to create a model that can be used across the nation, and globally to empower others to advocate and work on behalf of women. Currently, maternity mortality rates are unacceptable; women deserve to live through the experience [of child birth] and hold their baby and go home.”

The Ruth J. Simmons Center for Race and Justice at Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU) will track the progress and measure impact of the investments and grants.

Building a better future

This announcement comes on the heels of the new partnership with Ayesha Curry and Lendistry. Lendistry is a Black-led, mission-driven lender based in California. It aims to encourage and develop Black women entrepreneurs in the restaurant industry in the Greater Oakland area.

President and CEO of the National Urban League and One Million Black Women Advisory Council member, Marc Morial, lauded this access to capital partnership, stating that “to focus on Black women-owned businesses, ensuring that they have skills, connections, contacts and capital to grow is where this initiative can play a significant role.”

Ayesha Curry, entrepreneur and member of the Advisory Council added, “In addition to access to capital, we have to provide Black women with a safe space to learn and grow. This is why I am so proud to be a member of the Advisory Council. I look forward to sharing the lessons that I’ve learned as an entrepreneur; as well as growing and evolving with the women in this community.”

In conclusion, these efforts will bring Goldman Sachs closer to its goal of improving the lives of one million Black women over the next 10 years.

About the One Million Black Women Initiative

In partnership with Black-women-led organizations, financial institutions and other partners, Goldman Sachs has committed $10 billion in direct investment capital and $100 million in philanthropic capital over the next decade to address the dual disproportionate gender and racial biases that Black women have faced for generations, which have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. The initiative, One Million Black Women, is named for and guided by the goal of impacting the lives of at least one million Black women by 2030.

About Goldman Sachs

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. is a leading global financial institution that delivers a broad range of financial services across investment banking, securities, investment management and consumer banking to a large and diversified client base that includes corporations, financial institutions, governments and individuals. Founded in 1869, the firm is headquartered in New York and maintains offices in all major financial centers around the world.

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