The Surdna Foundation in New York City has announced a $4.5 million investment in the Amplify Fund, an initiative of the Neighborhood Funders Group, in support of efforts to put neighborhood development in the hands of local residents.
Through the fund, Surdna will join with the Ford and Open Society foundations to scale and advance the practice of community engaged development and formalize a set of best practices in the field. Funders in California organized by the California Endowment have developed a sister fund, the Fund for an Inclusive California, that will support work aligned with its own efforts in the state.
The Amplify Fund works to support the efforts of residents in historically marginalized communities advocating for a say in the policies, development, and public investments that affect their lives. With the funds from Surdna and others, the fund will make investments in up to ten cities over the next five years, with a focus on supporting citywide and regional coalitions, networks, and campaigns led by members of low-wealth communities and communities of color. In addition to financial support, the fund also will assist grantee organizations with communications, evaluation, and technical support.
"As we celebrate Surdna's centennial year, we're renewing our commitment to our mission through smart and inclusive community and economic development," said Surdna Foundation president Phillip Henderson. "The Amplify Fund is a tremendous way to honor the work of the past one hundred years while looking toward building and strengthening the field of community-engaged development to create sustainable communities for the future."