On April 4, 2019, Seattle, Washington Mayor Jenny A. Durkan announced that $5 million in funding had been made available for community organizations through the city’s Equitable Development Initiative (EDI) that supports local groups responding to residential, commercial, and cultural displacement.
Community-based organizations working in Seattle on anti-displacement projects, strategies, and economic development opportunities are encouraged to apply to the EDI fund by June 5. Funding is available for capacity building, property acquisition, and capital expenses for community-initiated projects in neighborhoods at high-risk of displacement.
The EDI fund, administered by Seattle’s Office of Planning and Community Development (OPCD), and in coordination with Office of Economic Development, Office of Housing, Department of Neighborhoods, Office of Arts and Culture, and Office for Civil Rights, was created to respond to the needs of marginalized populations, reduce disparities, and support access to opportunity in healthy, vibrant communities. The initiative was championed by organizations responding to the impacts of historic disinvestment and ongoing displacement pressures in communities of color in Seattle.
OPCD will evaluate applications based on their ability to positively impact several equity drivers, including:
- Promoting access to opportunity and economic mobility;
- Mitigating displacement of marginalized populations, businesses, and community organizations and helping them to thrive in their neighborhoods;
- Enhancing and building off the cultural assets within communities; and
- Reducing disparities in health outcomes.
EDI funds are intended to complement existing funding sources and address gaps identified by communities with their existing resources. Engagement with partner organizations will involve a multi-year process of building capacity, developing a project, and overseeing implementation and reporting.
The city says that successful applicants will be those who demonstrate a deep relationship with the community they are seeking to partner with and feature an inclusive community process, with community members serving in their organizational leadership.
Organizations planning to apply for funding are strongly encouraged to participate in OPCD’s pre-application meetings.
Requests for meetings will be accepted through May 31.
Applications are due June 5, 2019.
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