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Our Renewed Commitment to Democracy

At the Ford Foundation, we believe that if democracy is to work for any of us, it must work for all of us. Central to that belief is our enduring commitment to organizations working to protect the tentpoles of our democracy and ensure communities across the country have a seat at the legislative table.

Today, there is an urgent need to continue to invest in social justice infrastructure at the local, regional, and national level and across rural and urban America. To meet that need, we are excited to announce that our Cities and States program will join the Civic Engagement and Government-U.S. (CEG-US) program as part of a single, expanded grantmaking area that builds on their historic work to advance a more just, multiracial democracy. The expanded CEG-US will be one unified team, with both deeper integration and greater resources. Our grantmaking priorities and strategies will remain the same, with a renewed focus on empowering underrepresented and marginalized communities who have too often been silenced.

Over the last three years, the two teams have partnered extensively with our grantees to put the people systematically excluded from government participation at the center of efforts to advance equity. This integration is a natural progression for both the teams and for the organizations working at the intersection of these issues.

With this transition, we can further our work at the nexus of people, place, and power in a way that meaningfully expands civic participation across the country—including our historic commitment to Detroit and Michigan. This new team will continue to seize opportunities to improve the lives of Americans and create a framework for national change. We remain firm in our commitment to invest in an ecosystem of organizations in key states and regions, alongside our investment in national networks, nonprofits and initiatives aimed at amplifying the voice and influence of historically marginalized communities.

We believe that this reimagined formation will strengthen our work across the United States for the long term and accelerate our efforts to support leaders and organizers advocating for change in the immediate future. We are dedicated to fulfilling our mission of social justice—by working together, we can build a truly equitable, multiracial democracy.