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Advancing Justice Affiliation Redistributes Funds to Partner Organizations

March 29, 2022 News

Author

Aarti Kohli

Aarti Kohli

Executive Director

Aarti Kohli

Executive Director

Aarti Kohli is the Executive Director of Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, the first organization in the country to represent and promote the legal and civil rights of Asian and Pacific Islander communities. Aarti leads ALC with a vision of increasing the power of low-income immigrant communities to help advance economic and racial justice in our democracy. She currently leads a national table of Asian American leaders addressing anti-Asian hate with a focus on policy, messaging, and solidarity work. Aarti is committed to advancing local, state, and federal policy solutions that recognize and address the needs of Asian American and Pacifc Islander communities.

Aarti is an experienced leader with over twenty years of experience working at the intersections of immigration, civic engagement, criminal justice, economic equity, and national security. Prior to joining Advancing Justice – ALC, Aarti led her own consulting practice where she advised philanthropy and managed a project on the politics of demographic change and immigration reform at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Aarti also served as the Director of Immigration Policy at the Warren Institute at UC Berkeley School of Law where she led the institute’s immigration initiative on issues of equity for immigrant families. Formerly, she worked on a range of issues, from bankruptcy to voting rights, as Judiciary Committee counsel to Representative Howard Berman (D-CA). Before working for Congress she served as Assistant Legislative Director at UNITE union in Washington, DC where she lobbied on behalf of low-income garment workers.

As a leading network of independently-run Asian American Pacific Islander civil and legal rights nonprofits, we find ourselves in a unique position to support our community partners. In 2021, amid a national reckoning with anti-Asian racism and violence and a deeper understanding of the systemic solutions we need to live safely, the Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliation was fortunate to receive an influx of one-time donations from individuals, companies, and foundations. These supporters shared their desire to contribute to efforts that empower Asian American communities and address anti-Asian hate and violence. For many supporters, these contributions marked the first time they had intentionally given to Asian and Asian American organizations and communities.

We are deeply appreciative of this support. We also know that our work to build a more just world is made possible through partnerships, including with community-based organizations and coalitions across the country. Most of these organizations have not received the same amount of support from donors.

As some of the largest organizations led by and serving Asian American communities in the country, we often apply for funding together with coalition and movement partners and encourage donors to also support their work directly. In that spirit of collaboration, the Advancing Justice affiliation is redistributing $3 million to 68 organizations spanning 15 states, as well as $600,000 to the Emergency Victims and Survivors Fund in Georgia. These organizations serve a wide range of communities and focus on many different issue areas, including racial justice, community safety, gender-based violence response, economic security, immigrant rights, and voting rights, among others. Together, they represent many of the affiliation’s closest community-based and coalition partners.

While the Advancing Justice affiliation is not a funder nor does it seek to become one, we believe this is the right decision for our organizations and our partners in this moment. We also know that these funds are nowhere near enough to match the scale of the challenges we are facing and that as much as we intended to support as many organizations as possible, we did not reach everyone. According to Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, only 0.2% of grants nationwide in 2018 were designated for AAPI communities. We hope this funding decision encourages our donors and others to learn more about the organizations listed below, support their crucial work, and ask questions about the groups and places that need more support.

If you have questions about this affiliation update, please reach out to us.

In solidarity,

Aarti Kohli, Advancing Justice - Asian Law Caucus
Connie Chung Joe, Advancing Justice - Los Angeles
Grace Pai, Advancing Justice - Chicago
Phi Nguyen, Advancing Justice - Atlanta
John C. Yang, Advancing Justice - AAJC

Organizations Receiving Redistributed Funds (in alphabetical order)

Abolitionist Teachers Network (GA)
ACDC TX (TX)
API Equality – LA (CA)
API Equality – Northern California (CA)
Apna Ghar, Inc. (IL)
Asian Americans United (PA)
Asian Youth Center (CA)
Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence (CA)
Asian Prisoner Support Committee (CA)
Asian Solidarity Collective (CA)
Asian Texans for Justice (TX)
Athena’s Warehouse (GA)
AYPAL (CA)
Boat People SOS-Houston (TX)
CAIR-Chicago (IL)
CAIR-Georgia (GA)
CAIR-San Francisco Bay Area (CA)
Center for Asian Americans in Action (CA)
Center for Empowering Immigrants and Refugees (CA)
Chinatown Service Center (CA)
Chinese Community Center (TX)
Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community (CBCAC) (IL)
Demo Lab South (GA)
Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC) (CA)
Emergency Victims and Survivors Fund (GA)
Freedom Inc. (WI)
Fresno Center (CA)
Georgia Muslim Voter Project (GA)
Georgia Youth Justice Coalition (GA)
Hamilton-Madison House (NY)
HANA Center (IL)
Hmong Innovating Politics (HIP) (CA)
Indo-American Center (IL)
InterFaith Movement (CA)
Jakara Movement (CA)
KAN-WIN (IL)
Khmer Girls in Action (CA)
Korean American Coalition (CA)
Korean American Family Service Center (KAFSC) (NY)
Korean Community Services (CA)
Kutturan Chamoru Foundation (CA)
Little Tokyo Service Center (CA)
MN8 (MN)
Montgomery County Progressive Asian American Network (MoCoPAAN) (MD)
Narika (CA)
New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice (NJ)
North Carolina Asian Americans Together (NC)
OCA-Houston (TX)
OPAWL - Building AAPI Feminist Leadership (OH)
Orange County Asian Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA) (CA)
Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans (PANA) (CA)
Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition (PA)
Pilipino Workers Center (CA)
Raksha (GA)
Refugee and Immigrant Transitions (CA)
Rhode Island Youth Student Movement (PrYSM) (RI)
Rising Voices (MI)
SEAC Village (NC)
Sikh Coalition
South Asian Network (CA)
Southeast Asian Freedom Network (SEAFN)
Southeast Asian Mutual Assistance Association Coalition (SEAMAAC) (PA)
Southland Integrated Services (CA)
Thai Community Development Center (CA)
The Devi Co-op (GA)
VietLead (PA)
Vietnamese Association of Illinois (IL)
Womankind (NY)
Woori Juntos (TX)