Tides Foundation’s I-Belong Fund is investing in the narrative and storytelling power of immigrant communities and proximate leaders at the frontlines of community change. Based on research, data, and lessons learned, I-Belong takes a rigorous approach to narrative strategy by creating a Community of Practice of 10 local and state-level organizations to collaborate in a learning curriculum led by Define American. The goal is for immigrant and impacted leaders to have the practical tools they need to develop innovative pro-immigrant media and storytelling content in order to reach audiences who are being targeted across media platforms with toxic fear mongering and chaos-based narratives that profile immigrants as dangerous and hurtful to our economy and our way of life. Let’s change these narratives with social justice immigration programs and power-building grantmaking.
[Images: I-Belong grantees La Union del Pueblo Entero and the Asian American Advocacy Fund]
I-Belong Power Builders. In partnership with an immigration rights advisor, I-Belong invited 10 organizations to be part of the pilot Community of Practice Power Builders — to learn, create, and build narrative power based on five funding priorities:
- Immigrant or impact-led organizations
- Committed to and engaged in movement and power building
- Existing infrastructure/ability to absorb capacity-building support
- Organizational support for leadership to have the bandwidth and capacity to engage fully in the Community of Practice
- Shared values of equity, collaboration, transparency and the belief in the power of narrative change to shift attitudes and counter disinformation
Each organization received a $100,000 general operating grant to support their power-building leadership.
I-Belong seeks to seed the growth of BIPOC Leadership. We recognize that organizations led by proximate leaders, including Asian, Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Muslim and other communities of color are often excluded from grantmaking priorities. As a result, 90% of I-Belong funded nonprofits have leaders who identify as people of color—100% include BIPOC leaders in their senior leadership.
Community of Practice Power Builders Facilitator: I-Belong is partnering with Define American, a culture change organization that uses the power of narrative to redefine the immigrant story in mass media, to facilitate the Community of Practice. Define American will co-design the Community of Practice’s learning curriculum, bring in leading narrative strategists, support innovative media content creation and dissemination, and produce newsletters on trends in anti-immigrant narratives for the broader immigrant justice movement.
Ecosystem Partners: I-Belong will invite and provide a stipend to 25 ecosystem partner organizations to join two events with the Community of Practice during the 18-month period to learn, share information, and build long-term connections. The ecosystem partners are still being selected; please contact us for more information.
I-Belong is a collective action fund of Tides Foundation. Tides will oversee this fund through an internal Independent Advisory Committee (IAC) consisting of seasoned staff in capacity-building and immigrant rights. Tides holds discretion on grantmaking and final decision making.
The I-Belong Fund is in the pilot phase as a capacity-building and grantmaking initiative. We hope to be able to continue this initiative beyond the initial 18-month pilot period, and we encourage you to stay informed and connected through this site for collaborative opportunities.
Join us in building narrative power to counter the toxic fear and chaos-based narratives harming immigrant communities. Help us uplift local and state-level organizations to develop narrative strategies that help people see a pro-immigrant future of shared values and belonging. Our goal is to raise at least $6M over the next three years.