The Lenny Zakim Fund's Statement on the Current Climate of Racism and Violence
Twenty-five years ago, our founder, Lenny Zakim, challenged Greater Boston to respond to the racial disparities and despair that were gripping our nation at that time. “There are no innocent bystanders,” he said. “We as Jews, we as Blacks, we as Asians, we as white people, have to say: 'This is an affront to all of us. This is an outrage to all of us."
Today, many of us are speaking out once again and gathering together to fight the racial, criminal and economic injustice that has become more visible than ever. Others recognize that this is a time to listen and to learn about how each one of us can help to dismantle systemic oppression and racism.
Those of us who represent The Lenny Zakim Fund see this as a time to rededicate ourselves to our mission of partnering with those who work at the community level to raise people up and bring positive change, while challenging oppressive systems and institutions. We believe that the work being done by the organizations we help to support represents commitment, creativity, and activism at its best and we will be increasing our effort to share information about their work, and ways to become involved and stay informed.
Lenny Zakim lived only 46 years, but used that precious time to unify, educate and mobilize against ignorance and hate. Knowing that violence would never forge a path toward reconciliation, Lenny dedicated his life to creating and providing people with resources and tools that are needed to build bridges within and across communities.
Today, The Lenny Zakim Fund remains committed to these ideals and Lenny’s legacy. We deeply appreciate the generosity of all those who enable us to support community visionaries and we hope you will join us as we continue to ask: What more can we do to promote social justice and enhance partnerships that effect change?
The following list highlights ten of our current and past grantee organizations. We will regularly change this list to give voice to all those who work on the frontline, consistently demonstrating that one person can change the world. Together they create a symphony of hope.
Please take some time to learn about these wonderful organizations and find new ways to support their efforts at this critical time.
- Encuentro Diaspora Afro
- Essex County Community Organizing
- Brockton Interfaith Coalition
- Dorchester Youth Collaborative
- Level Ground MMA
- Operation L.I.P.S.T.I.C.K.
- Louis D. Brown Peace Institute
- Youth and Police in Partnership
Celebrating 20 Years of Making a Difference
How We Grow the Grassroots
Founded on the belief that effective social change can be created at the grassroots, The Lenny Zakim Fund (LZF) identifies, supports, and connects small community based organizations operation "below the radar screen" of other foundations and government agencies.
A single gift to LZF not only supports over 60 vetted organizations annually, but also provides the training and networking to strengthen leading and emerging grassroots agencies.
Building community through experiential philanthropy, every donor has the opportunity to connect directly with the organizations and individuals LZF serves.