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OUR ORGANIZING WILL FREE US

The year 2020 will be forever etched in our minds as the year of the global pandemic that shook us to our core and social uprisings for a future that is yet to be realized.  Our 2020 Annual Report* is a reflection of this reality.  It includes some reflections on the moment; powerful photos of grantees in motion; data on grants made; and the support from our amazing donors.  This report is our story of radical change and radical joy.  Please read and get inspired, as we are, to continue the work of justice for all.

Our Annual Report includes:

  • ED Letter
  • Financial Summary
  • Impact Numbers
  • List of 2020 Grantees

*Fiscal Year 2020 (July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020)

READ IT NOW

DOWNLOAD PDF VERSION

Fri, Apr 30, 2021

   On April 5, community members held vigil for Adam Toledo in Little Village. Photo by Alexis Sanchez-Boyzo

Chicago Police killings 

 

On the evening of Tuesday, April 13, 2021 the mother of 13-year-old Adam Toledo did what no parent should have to do, and that as a society has become painfully too frequent. The Toledo family reviewed bodycam footage of an on-duty Chicago police officer fatally shooting Adam in the chest in the early hours of March 29, 2021 in the Little Village neighborhood. Unfortunately, it is not the only Chicago police-involved shooting targeting Black and brown people amid a global pandemic.  In the same week that Toledo was killed, 22-year-old Anthony Alvarez was fatally shot and killed in Portage Park (April 3, 2021). Before Adam and Anthony, 18-year-old Travon Chadwell was shot at a Home Depot in Brighton Park (March 26, 2021). Before Travon, 25-year-old Marc Nevarez was also shot while running away, dying instantly (October 23, 2020). Before Adam, Anthony, Travon, and Marc, there was 26-year-old Miguel Vega who was shot and later pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital (September 1, 2020). We cannot let this be our new normal. Black and brown communities have not had a moment to heal from so many lives cut short due to police interactions. We say their names because the calls for systemic changes to end racist policing and surveillance is where our attention needs to be right now.

 

According to initial reporting, Chicago police encountered Adam when responding to the ShotSpotter gunfire detection system. This type of surveillance technology permeates Black and Latinx neighborhoods, placing residents in close proximity to police and the inherent danger of getting killed by those who are supposed to serve and protect.

 

Videos like that of Adam Toledo getting killed by police continue to traumatize our communities. There is no space to mourn the people we love while yet another person is murdered. Today, our solidarity is with Adam Toledo's family, the community of Little Village, and all those who have died or have been terrorized by state violence. We will continue to support groups working for a world where safety is not an exclusive club for a few, but an open promise to all.

 


 

 

RESOURCES:

 

Bystander Intervention to Stop Police Sponsored Violence and Anti-Black Racist Harassment training.In response to the continued police violence against Black communities and the recent murders of Daunte Wright, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, Hollaback! is offering a FREE, one-hour, interactive training on how to safely intervene in the face of police violence and anti-Black racism using Hollaback!’s 5D’s bystander intervention. Register



Information on ShotSpotter and other surveillance technology

After the police killing of Adam Toledo in Chicago, the ShotSpotter gunfire detection system deserves serious scrutiny.

 

Gun Shot Detection [Chicago Police Surveillance]

 

The Shots Heard Round the City: Are Chicago’s new shot detection and predictive policing technologies worth it? 

 

Thu, Apr 15, 2021

LtoR: Cindy Ibarra, Jeanne Kracher, Karen Lewis, and Veronica Morris-Moore. Photo credit: Sarah-Ji

 

Karen Lewis came up through the rank and file, from her experience as an educator in the classroom to her leadership as President of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU). Karen taught us to be bold, courageous, and unapologetic about fighting for the issues that affect Chicagoans every day - poverty, race, inequality, discrimination, violence. She reminded us to center youth, parents, families, and the communities where we all live. 

 

Former Crossroads Fund Executive Director Jeanne Kracher and Karen Lewis. Photo credit: Sarah-Ji

 

Crossroads Fund honored Karen and the CTU in 2013 with the Ron Sable Award for Activism at our annual benefit, Seeds of Change.  While her loss saddens us, we remember her mandate to fight for that which is just, as she implored us to in her acceptance speech;

 

Activism means something, it means that you don’t sit down when you see injustice, it means that you don’t turn an eye to issues that are problematic, and it means that you do take a stand.- Karen Lewis, Seeds of Change 2013

 Karen Lewis makes remarks with CTU leadership on stage. Photo credit: Sarah-Ji

Go well, Karen, rest easy, and may the ancestors welcome you.

Tue, Feb 09, 2021

Crossroads Fund log and tagline featuring activists at a protest in Pilsen

Amidst a global pandemic, a time in which we oscillate between being completely and fully hopeful to moments of anxiety, we welcome our 40th Anniversary with awe, joy, optimism, and gratitude for the community we have created along the way. 


In 1981, the founders of Crossroads Fund formed a public foundation that believed in deconstructing systems at their root by supporting grassroots organizing, sharing decision-making power with informed community grantmaking, joyfully redistributing their wealth, funding rapid responses to community needs, and championing change, not charity. These guiding principles continue to be our north star.

 

In 2021 we will have a year-long celebration of what we have collectively accomplished, the many organizing wins that have been achieved, and the communities and individuals that have been part of our history with a keen eye to the 40 years ahead.

 

We welcome you to join us in celebrating 40 years rooted in radical change and in recommitting ourselves to sustain liberation movements. Be on the lookout for all the events and opportunities we have lined up in 2021.

 

Throughout the year, we will be featuring videos by friends of Crossroads Fund saluting our milestone. Here is a short compilation to kick us off! 

 

 


We invite you to join the celebration of our 40th Anniversary by submitting a video too. Submit here.

 

In celebration and gratitude,

Jane Kimondo

Executive Director

Wed, Jan 27, 2021

 

Crossroads Fund Community,

The events of 2020 have made it abundantly clear that the world as we know it is no longer sustainable, and that our institutions are not serving the many. Author and political activist Arundhati Roy described the pandemic as a portal, and that is indeed a fitting metaphor for 2020. On one side lies the failures of essential systems to provide for people and the inevitable results: millions of deaths due to mishandled public health efforts; social uprisings against generations of state sanctioned violence; devastating fires and floods from climate change and environmental degradation; and national elections that simultaneously repudiated harmful policies while also endorsing centrist beliefs that will not get us to the collective liberation that this moment demands. We acknowledge these widespread harms while inviting you to step through the portal to explore the other side and discover what else is possible.

Crossroads Fund and our grantee partners are committed to building a just world. Each year we are honored to collaborate with these grantees who are already working toward a new future. Every day they inch closer to a generative, supportive, and sustainable society that works for all people. They organize, build power, and cultivate joy while also mitigating the harms caused by extraction and violence. This work includes: 

  • Reimagining economic systems that prioritize people over profits by establishing and educating communities on cooperative economic models
  • Ensuring housing is a right by halting evictions, demanding rent control, preventing gentrification, organizing to utilize vacant public housing, and demanding community benefits agreements that prioritize long time-residents alongside new development
  • Addressing the carceral systems head on by removing police from schools, demanding the reallocation of resources from the police to communities, ending money bond, and cutting ties between Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and city government to stop deportations
  • Creating culture through film festivals, performance, photography, video, and music
  • Caring for people and cultivating solidarity through mutual aid, food, and cash assistance

We are proud of all the 136 strong, committed, courageous and unapologetic grantees; for all that they do in the spotlight and behind the scenes. They are all essential in the work of movement building and paving the way toward a future world that we all deserve.

 

Jane Kimondo

Executive Director

Mon, Dec 07, 2020