June 4, 2020
The massive protests across our cities over the past week, the pandemic that looms before us still, and the economic uncertainty experienced by so many have shaken us to our very core.
Upheaval is destabilizing and scary.
The upheaval we experienced as businesses and schools closed down and non-essential workers stayed home to wall off a pernicious virus. The upheaval we experienced as jobs were lost, plans were scuttled, and the economic security of our less well-off neighbors plummeted even further. The upheaval we experienced as our neighborhoods were flooded with protestors peacefully assembling to rattle our collective conscience of the daily and deadly injustices faced by the Black community.
Upheaval brings uncertainty and discomfort.
Upheaval is also revealing.
It reveals what is most important and what values we will stand up for. It reveals who is ready to notice what may be an uncomfortable truth and willing to put the work in to create a fairer and more just world. It reveals why the work that we are doing is worth doing even more.
What Lever Fund stands for is community and justice. We stand in solidarity with those seeking racial equity. We honor the work of our nonprofit partners. And, we remain committed to improving the lives of the Black community here in our National Capital region.
George Floyd and so many others who we grimly memorialize were failed by a broken criminal justice system. And that is utterly unacceptable. They also suffered from an education system whose outcomes are more determined by your zip code than your aptitude. A healthcare system that, even during this pandemic, serves too few people of color. A broken economic system that clusters wealth even as workers become more productive. We believe that fixing one system will contribute to fixing the others.
As we write, our nonprofit partners need our help and they need yours to continue the important work that they do to break the cycle of poverty.
The past many months of upheaval has our nonprofit partners struggling.
We recently selected Genesys Works National Capital Region (“Genesys Works NCR”) as the first recipient of funds collected through our Relief Campaign which we launched earlier this year. Genesys Works NCR provides pathways to career success for high school students in underserved communities through skills training, meaningful work experiences, and impactful relationships.
It takes $3,000 to support one low-income student through a rigorous summer training program in preparation for a fall internship so that one year from now our student will be on a track to attend a four-year college and get a degree that will produce a living wage in the future.
Keeping Genesys Works NCR on track to deliver benefits to the Black, brown and disadvantaged community in our region is one way we can show up and take action.
Contribute to the Relief Campaign
Please give generously. Each dollar you give will be matched by Lever Fund's Board up to $15,000. Together, we can support ten low-income students just this year.
Systemic racism like poverty is difficult to dismantle. It can, however, be addressed and healed one family, one neighborhood, and one jurisdiction at a time.
For Lever Fund, this is the first step of many. We are committed to doing our part in providing a solution.
Come join us. We welcome you.
Jill and Connie