DMV Power

Through Disrupt, Move, Voice Power (DMV Power), the Weissberg Foundation will fund, amplify, build the capacity of, and support collaboration among organizations and efforts building power of people of color in the District, suburban Maryland, and Virginia who are multiply impacted by political, economic, and social systems in order to advance racial equity. We seek grantee partners working to disrupt power by challenging and fighting against structural inequities, move power through strategic engagement and mobilization of community, and voice power in building truthful and inclusive narratives about people of color and their lived experiences.

DMV Power is dedicated to:

  • Combatting systemic oppression, in which racism is perpetuated by social systems and institutions that are structurally inequitable;
  • Recognizing the lived experience of community members experiencing racism by allowing them to speak first-hand about the ways in which their lives intersect with racial injustices;
  • Highlighting that racism is not one-dimensional, but instead that people of color live multi-issue lives in which inequity exists across overlapping and compounded issues such as housing equity, food scarcity, educational in opportunity, involvement in the criminal justice system, and a lack of/under-employment, among others;
  • Understanding that identities are intersectional in nature and that taken together components of identity reflect a spectrum of power and privilege along social strata such as race, class, gender, sexual orientation, age, ability, religion, etc.;
  • Underscoring the weight of historical oppression experienced by communities of color which speaks to the normalized and chronic exclusion and inequity that is intergenerational; and
  • Promoting an anti-racist stance that intentionally opposes racism and pushes for racial equity through actions and belief systems.

Goals

For our communities:

  • POWER: People of color who are multiply impacted by systems are more empowered to advance equitable outcomes for themselves, their families, and their communities.

For our grantees:

  • VISIBILITY: Organizations giving voice and opportunity to historically marginalized populations – particularly those organizations closest to and led by members of the communities they serve – are more visible and attractive to talent, funders, and other potential collaborators.
  • STRENGTH: Organizations are better positioned to meet their goals to advance racial equity because they are better resourced to work effectively.

For our foundation:

  • UNDERSTANDING: The Foundation deepens our knowledge about systems change to advance racial equity and grows our relationship with organizations and individuals working to advance it.
  • STRATEGY: The Foundation is better positioned to leverage a longer term, more comprehensive, and more effective strategy to support community-driven efforts to advance racial equity across the District, Maryland, and Virginia.

Our ultimate vision is the creation of a strong and sustainable culture and infrastructure of community power in the District, suburban Maryland, and Virginia that advances racial equity.

Grant Awards

The Weissberg Foundation expects to make 8 new grant awards to organizations doing state-wide and/or state-level work in Virginia or local and/or regional work in the District. Each award will amount to $35,000 a year for four years, January 2020-January 2024. In addition to these new awards, the Foundation will sustain two Maryland legacy grants from the original Reframing <Washington> Empowerment Fund cohort.

Contact

Please check out our frequently asked questions about DMV Power. If you have any additional questions, please contact our program manager Leni Dworkis at ldworkis@weissbergfoundation.org or 703-276-7500 x29.