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Racial Equity Grants support racial justice advocacy, healthcare and affordable housing

Now in its third year, Northwestern’s community grant program funds projects across Evanston and Chicago
Books & Breakfast partners with Leadership Development and Community Engagement in Northwestern’s Division of Student Affairs to continue efforts to empower racial justice advocates in Evanston schools.

Driven to help all Evanston kids get a strong start in preparation for kindergarten, the Childcare Network of Evanston was one of 13 local beneficiaries of Northwestern’s 2023 Racial Equity and Community Partnership grants program. Totaling more than $550,000, this year’s series of grants fuel projects based in Evanston and Chicago that focus on health equity, children’s learning and social or economic empowerment.

Partnership grants of $15,000 to $75,000 are designed to help community-based organizations build on their existing collaborations with Northwestern faculty, students or departments.

“We’re excited to nurture these projects because they bring together the resources of the University and the knowledge of community organizations to take on underlying causes of inequities in our home communities of Chicago and Evanston,” said Dave Davis, Northwestern’s senior executive director of Neighborhood and Community Relations (NCR). “The first two years of the program have already had positive impacts, and our new director of Evanston Community Relations, EL Da’ Sheon Nix, will work with grantees to keep growing the program.”

Now in its third year, the Racial Equity and Community Partnership program has provided 43 total grants that tackle issues such as Evanston reparations, local food deserts and the healthy development of area youth.

“We cannot overstate the importance of the partnership between Childcare Network of Evanston and Northwestern's Child Language Lab and PedzSTAR Lab,” said Carol Teske, executive director of the Childcare Network of Evanston. “Together, we are committed to addressing the inequity that impacts too many of our community’s children, particularly children of color.”

2023 Racial Equity and Community Partnership Grant recipients

The Black Metropolis Research Consortium is working with Northwestern’s Center for Civic Engagement on the project “Supporting Chicagoland’s Black Archives: Black Metropolis Graduate Assistantships.” 

Books & Breakfast partners with Leadership Development and Community Engagement in Northwestern’s Division of Student Affairs to continue efforts to empower racial justice advocates in Evanston schools.

Bright Star Community Outreach, along with the Department of Medicine at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine, is improving access to palliative care for Black residents of Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood.

The Chicago 400 Alliance and the Northwestern Public Interest Program are collaborating on the project “We Shouldn’t Have Laws We Don’t Talk About: The Registry and Banishment Archives.” 

The Childcare Network of Evanston and the Roxelyn and Richard Pepper Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the School of Communication are working on universal screening for speech and language disorders in Evanston early childhood centers.

Cultivate Collective is collaborating with the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Feinberg on a project centered on health equity in southwest Chicago.

Distinctively Me and the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences are working on the project “Rebuilding Black Girlhood: Programming, Partnership and Research with Black Girls.”

The Evanston Development Cooperative and the Buehler Center for Health Policy and Economics at Feinberg have developed a one-stop shop for equitable and affordable housing retrofits.

Experiences That Matter Foundation, Inc., and the Department of Ophthalmology at Feinberg have teamed up on the “2020 Perfect Vision Campaign.”

The I Am Abel Foundation and the Department of Gastroenterology at Feinberg are running the Chicago Summer Institute for the Development of Physicians and Researchers.

Lorenzo’s House has teamed up with the Mesulam Center for Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer's Disease at Feinberg on “Music, Movement & Memory: Providing Access to Families Across Chicago.”

The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian, along with Northwestern’s Center for Native American and Indigenous Research and the Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications, is advancing narrative through Native representation and culturally responsive programs.

The YWCA Evanston/North Shore is partnering with the Department of Computer Science in the McCormick School of Engineering for the YW Tech Lab & Portfolio Project.