This year has really emphasized some of the persistent inequities within our society. We are navigating a pandemic, witnessing police brutality at an alarming rate, and forced to reckon with the danger caused by systemic racism. As an organization that believes in justice, equity, and fairness, we join the voices of many who declare Black lives matter. Tamir Rice mattered. Sandra Bland mattered. Philando Castile mattered. Breonna Taylor mattered. George Floyd mattered. And yet, much too often, our systems, laws, and actions reveal that we have so much work to do to address and correct the social ills caused by racism.
We stand in solidarity with the Black community. We recognize that we must do so much more than end police brutality and overt racism, but also work steadfastly to dismantle the many systems of institutionalized racism and root out our own personal biases. We at vChief commit to doing the necessary work to educate ourselves on how we can become better allies and create meaningful, impactful and lasting change.
From the start, vChief has partnered with clients focused on social justice and educational equity work. We feel extremely fortunate to work with individuals who inspire us to do better, learn more, and advocate for vulnerable communities. Organizations such as:
My Brother’s Keeper was an initiative launched by President Obama ”to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.” More than 200 communities throughout the country accepted the challenge to do better by expanding opportunities for kids in greatest need, including our home base in Madison, WI. Their site is full of helpful resources for communities and organizations looking to make a difference.
Camelback Ventures is another organization working towards equity: “Genius is equally distributed. Opportunity is not. Camelback is here to change that.” Their mission is to identify, develop, and promote early-stage underrepresented entrepreneurs with the aim to increase individual and community education, and generational wealth. This summer, they hosted a “Ruthless Pitches” event giving BIPOC entrepreneurs who are working to create an anti-racist America a platform to share their ideas.
Based in Maryland, Freestate Justice is “a social justice organization that works statewide to improve the lives of LGBTQ Marylanders and their families through legal services, policy advocacy, outreach, education, and coalition building.” Freestate accomplishes their mission by providing direct legal services to low-income LGBTQ clients, advocating for systemic law and policy changes, providing outreach opportunities designed to promote self-advocacy within the LGBTQ community (especially teens), and providing education and training to Maryland lawyers and judges about LGBTQ legal needs.
The Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights is “a champion for the best interests of children who arrive in the United States on their own, from all corners of the world.” They serve as trusted allies for children during their deportation proceedings, advocating for individual children and promoting the creation of a dedicated children’s immigrant justice system that ensures the safety and well-being of every child. The Young Center aims to change the immigration system so that children in immigration proceedings are recognized as children, and their best interests are included in the decision-making process. In honor of Father’s Day, Their most recent campaign, Power of a Father’s Love, shared personal stories from fathers who have been separated from their families because of anti-immigration policies.
These are a few of many organizations that are on the ground, doing the hard work, day in and day out. Given their mission and commitment to equity and justice, we are grateful for their impact and support of those who are often marginalized by an unfair system. It is an honor to be able to support their efforts and we will continue to reflect on the actions we can take, as individuals and as an organization, to challenge racism and inequity in our communities.