Universal Moves on Building Power for Health Justice: Launches 5-year Partnerships with 10 Organizations

Building Power for Justice

Ten organizations were selected to receive Building Power grants of $20,000 for the next year. The Building Power program is a 5-year commitment of unrestricted funding – which also includes Universal supporting these groups in their organizing and advocacy through partnership. The funded partners’ priorities will inform Universal’s advocacy in 2023 and the years to come.

All the groups are engaged in organizing, are explicit about equity, and staff and/or leadership reflect the people they are working with. All work with Black and Brown residents or are in solidarity with issues this population faces. Some are youth-led, while others are working with youth organizers or developing young people in their own work.

The organizations are all small and/or emerging, working at a variety of levels to make change – boards of education, town councils, state agencies, and the state legislature. Geographically, work in the cities of Hartford, Bridgeport, New Haven, and Waterbury are represented – plus there are many who are working statewide.

The issues the groups are working on range across the spectrum of health, racial, social and economic justice. While the issue areas the groups work on are varied, each is a critical rope that can braid together to build a strong justice movement in Connecticut.

Building power for health justice is not only about policy wins – but about strengthening and growing the organizing field, supporting the leadership development of those most impacted by injustice, and creating a demand for change.

Universal is excited to be in relationship with these partners and looks forward to building power together.

Building Power Partners:

The Building Power partners will each receive $20,000 grants for work in 2023:

  1. CT Black and Brown Student Union
  2. Ministerial Health Fellowship*
  3. Mothers and Others for Justice
  4. Full Citizens Coalition (Unlock the Vote)*
  5. Bridgeport Generation Now
  6. Step Up New London*
  7. Equality CT*
  8. Hartford Deportation Defense*
  9. Semilla Collective
  10. HUSKY 4 Immigrants

Capacity Bridging Support

The Universal Capacity Bridging Fund has funded 9 organizations. The Capacity Bridging Fund was created to support the needs of organizations working at the intersections of health justice.

The organizations intend to use the funds to support activities such as: production of a report about Black health in New London, grant writing, sending organizers to national trainings, leadership development, and strengthening local and statewide coalitions.

Universal anticipates opening another round of Capacity Bridging Fund opportunities in 2023.

Capacity Bridging Fund recipients:

  1. Ministerial Health Fellowship - $5,000*
  2. Keep the Promise Coalition - $5,000
  3. Hearing Youth Voices - $5,000
  4. Step Up New London - $5,000*
  5. Hartford Deportation Defense - $5,000*
  6. Full Citizens Coalition (Unlock the Vote) - $5,000*
  7. Black Health Collective - $2,500
  8. Equality CT - $2,500*
  9. SOW-CT - $15,000

* Starred organizations received funding through both grant opportunities