For decades, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) has intentionally partnered with national and community-based organizations to advance racial equity and racial healing in the United States. Children are at the heart of all we undertake – but children live in families and families live in communities. For children to thrive, we recognize, their families need work and their communities need to be equitable places of opportunity.
That understanding is behind WKKF investments to spur economic growth, create pathways for workforce development and actively engage communities in the process. Our efforts with national organizations, such as the National Equity Project, and community endeavors, including the Center for Diversity and Innovation (CDI), are part of our steadfast commitment to racial equity. With that intention, we set a standard for grantee organizations to infuse racial equity and community engagement in their processes and actively monitor their progress during the funding period.
Although we have no direct control over the internal processes of any grantee, we seek to maintain steady, open and responsive communications with the organizations we fund. With organizations nearing the end of a grant period, such as CDI, the discussions begin months before any transition. Throughout we emphasize community relationships and expectations and strategize to provide continuity as new work is developed. Given the conversations that were in process, the unexpected action by CDI to eliminate staff is both regrettable and contrary to our values as an organization.
As we deepen racial equity work in Battle Creek going forward, we will reach out to capable local, regional and national partners committed to practices and policies in line with our founder’s values.