New Black Philanthropic Giving Circle of Harford County aims to uplift underserved community

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The Community Foundation of Harford County has announced the creation of the Black Philanthropic Giving Circle of Harford County. Here are the details provided by the CFHC:

Founding Steering Committee members of the Black Philanthropic Giving Circle of Harford County, a group formed at the Community Foundation of Harford County to administer the funding of non-profit organizations that work to help better the lives of Black residents of Harford County. Left to right: Fred Merchant, Pam Dorsey, Vicki Jones, Ron Fisher and Roberta Clay. Not pictured: Carol Bruce. For more information or to join the group, please visit https://cfharfordcounty.org/black-philanthropic-giving-circle-of-harford-county/. (Photo courtesy CFHC)

Community Leaders Create Black Philanthropic Giving Circle

Donors Will Determine Grants for Initiatives Supporting Harford County’s Black Community

Bel Air, Maryland, October 2023: The Community Foundation of Harford County (CFHC), the nonprofit philanthropic organization dedicated to meeting the changing needs and interests of Harford County residents and their quality of life, announces the creation of the Black Philanthropic Giving Circle of Harford County.

“Through this Circle, we are creating a hands-on way for people to get involved in a unique way, to increase participation in our work, and to increase the CFHC’s support of non-profit organizations that work to help better the lives of Black residents of Harford County,” states Fred Merchant, Founding Steering Committee Circle member and Board Member of CFHC. “Committed persons can now be ‘hands-on’ in making funding decisions,” adds Merchant. The Circle is guided by its founding Steering Committee, comprised of members from the Harford County NAACP and the Harford County Caucus of African American Leaders (HCCAAL): Carol Bruce, Roberta Clay, Pam Dorsey, Ronald Fisher, Vicki Jones and Fred Merchant. 

The Circle incorporates individual members of the Harford County community who not only have made a financial contribution to it, but are willing to work hands-on to address issues of structural inequities in Harford County. By joining the Circle, individual members of the community can personally address important societal structural inequities. 

The CFHC is actively seeking Circle members. “Joining the Black Philanthropic Giving Circle is a meaningful way that members can strategically direct funds towards initiatives that address systemic issues and promote equity, fostering a sense of unity and a lasting impact on targeted causes that uplift an underserved community,” says Founding Steering Committee member Vicki Jones.

Persons already part of Harford County non-profit organizations, schools and churches will be invited to apply once the Circle has had enough members join to make an impact. The Circle will then meet to review grant applications and vote on which organizations should receive funding. This funding will be issued by the CFHC, with required standard reporting and progress checks in place. 

Circle Membership levels include becoming a Founding Voting Circle Member, a Giving Circle Advisory Member, or a Friend of the Circle. “These are people deeply committed to working to solve matters of inequity and lack of opportunity for our Black citizens,” says Pam Dorsey. “We are deeply grateful for their participation.”

For further details on the Black Philanthropic Giving Circle of Harford County, including how to join it, please visit https://cfharfordcounty.org/black-philanthropic-giving-circle-of-harford-county/ or 

contact CFHC Executive Director Jennifer Farrell by phone at 443-371-6062, or via e-mail at jfarrell@cfharfordcounty.org.

The Community Foundation of Harford County (CFHC) is a 501(c)(3) publicly-supported non-profit philanthropic organization. All donations, gifts and pledges to CFHC are tax-deductible, and all donations made to the CFHC stay local. A full list of all funds and initiatives taken by the CFHC are available at its web site: cfharfordcounty.org