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August 24, 2022

Foundation Awards more than $660,000 in Grants to Advance Equity in Education and Build an Inclusive Economy

The Winston-Salem Foundation announces that 15 grants totaling $669,050 were committed in the first half of 2022 to support its two focus areas for community investment: Building an Inclusive Economy and Advancing Equity in Education, both critical to ensuring Winston-Salem becomes a place where race no longer predicts life outcomes. These grants were made possible by donations to the Foundation’s flexible grantmaking funds. To learn more, visit


  • Triad Cultural Arts is a community based, multi-disciplinary cultural arts organization, dedicated to presenting programming that contributes to a culturally competent community so that significant and lasting improvements can be made in our society. The organization created Rooted in Race, an interactive exhibit examining the history of student assignment in the local community. The exhibit, which includes stories from current and former WS/FCS students and staff members, seeks to examine the how historical policies and practices have contributed to the racial inequities that exist today. By giving voice to both current and former students and staff, Rooted in Race hopes to spark dialogue about how the community can promote and support racial equity in education.  

    Grant: $35,000 for Rooted in Race, a digital and interactive exhibit on public education
  • Action4Equity uses tools ranging from policy and advocacy to direct action, provides popular education, applies direct pressure by mobilizing constituents, and supports legal action to make real and lasting change in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools and the greater community. A4E has hired a chief operating officer to oversee and implement core business functions and internal operations. As a Black-led, multiracial organization, A4E is well positioned to meet the needs of many in the community who have not historically felt that their voices have been heard. A4E is a strong supporter of students and families and works closely with its constituents to increase their advocacy capacity.  

    Grant: $54,750 for a chief operating officer over three years
  • Triad Restorative Justice advances peace, equity, and trust in our communities by responding to conflict, crime, and injustice with effective restorative practices, education, and community building. The organization brings a trauma-informed, student-centered, and restorative lens to all its work and has a strong understanding of and appreciation for racial equity. As a five-year-old organization that has experienced rapid growth, TRJ is engaging external support to create a strategic plan to guide its future direction and growth while ensuring the organization holds true to its intended mission and scope.  

    Grant: $25,000 for strategic planning
  • Winston-Salem Freedom Schools works to reduce summer learning loss through culturally responsive pedagogy, enrichment, and civic engagement. The organization delivers a six-week, research-based summer literacy and enrichment program based on a multicultural program model from the Children's Defense Fund. Freedom Schools is providing a valuable and culturally responsive learning opportunity for primarily BIPOC students during the summer months.  

    Grant: $50,000 for executive director stipends


  • Forsyth Jail and Prison Ministries seeks to transform lives and break the cycle of crime and punishment in our community. Their Transition to Work program supports inmates through a curriculum building life skills, decision making, and employment skills, with support continuing after their release in the community.  FJPM has hired a new part-time transportation coordinator for the program to assess each participant and identify how best to support them, which could include contracting drivers, rideshare gas cards, bus passes, bicycles, mopeds, and zero-interest loans for purchasing a car. The coordinator will also assist with other barriers, such as navigating substance abuse classes, suspended licenses, and unpaid fines and fees.  

    Grant: $51,300 to expand Transition to Work services and transportation coordinator
  • Forsyth Technical Community College seeks to advance student success through excellence in learning, completion, equity, and post-graduation outcomes. After initial research and survey results from students, FTCC is addressing transportation barriers that its students face by providing direct support on an individual basis and piloting programs that have the potential to benefit all students. FTCC will provide microtransit to students in their apprenticeship program and will host a transportation summit to share their work to date and resources available to students. FTCC is mapping clusters of students and plans to offer core classes in satellite locations to be closer to residential locations and along more accessible WSTA transit lines. They are also collaborating with WSTA so that student IDs can be usable as bus passes in the future; monthly bus passes are currently available to all students. They are also developing a carpool system with incentives for students who participate.  

    Grant: $30,000 to continue providing emergency transportation for students, convene a summit on transportation, and implement a scalable transportation intervention plan
  • Goler Community Development Corporation revitalizes urban neighborhoods through housing development, commercial development, entrepreneurship, and workforce development. Goler plans to coordinate with NC Works and other workforce development partners to provide no cost door-to-door transportation services for unemployed and underemployed residents of Forsyth and surrounding counties. They plan to contract with Support Systems of Forsyth County, which is a local Black-owned microtransit business. This pilot project will provide 24/7 transportation for Forsyth County residents at no cost to residents who need dependable daily round-trip transportation to and from work. Initially, the project will offer free transportation vouchers for approximately 35 people for up to eight weeks. Goler CDC and other workforce development partners will provide additional support to program participants with job placements and budgeting for transportation after the microtransit subsidy ends.  

    Grant: $48,000 to provide microtransit to workforce development program participants
  • Greater Winston-Salem, Inc. seeks to develop a vibrant, thriving community that’s good for business growth and sustainability. The organization created Minority Business Enterprise Grants to promote economic recovery and job retention for local Black and Latinx-owned small businesses and recently hired new staff to manage applications, provide logistics for convenings, manage interns, and lead marketing and community outreach efforts.  

    GWS also oversees the ASPIRE WS program, a comprehensive initiative that brings together local employers, students, and education partners to collaborate on work-based learning opportunities for students in Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. GWS is providing microtransit assistance to interns in the program to ensure that transportation won't be a barrier for students to access their worksites.

    Grants: $70,000 to support the Minority Business Enterprise Grant program for a second and third year and $40,000 to provide transportation for students in the ASPIRE WS high school internship program over three years
  • Hosanna House of Transition provides supportive workforce development services for clients with resume, job search, and interview preparation assistance. They also provide transportation for many of their residents to their jobs once attained. Hosanna House will use grant funds to repair the organization’s van and support insurance and operating costs. They also plan to engage other continuum of care agencies and offer transportation to their clients. Clients that Hosanna House serves have traditionally been out work for a significant amount of time and have many barriers to re-entering the workforce.  

    Grant: $35,000 to establish and provide transportation services for clients experiencing transportation barriers
  • IFB Solutions provides opportunities for people who are blind or visually impaired and in need of training, employment, and services. To support their employees, IFB subsidizes transportation. This assistance takes several forms, including providing door-to-door microtransit and shuttles from designated pick-up spots, and coordinating paratransit via WSTA. IFB Solutions has also been partnering with the Here To There transportation service for over 10 years. Over the years, different routes have been added and adjusted based on the number of employees and their locations. Currently IFB supports transportation for 90 employees with subsidies of up to $3,000 per employee.  

    Grant: $40,000 to support subsidized transportation for IFB employees who are blind or visually impaired
  • Neighborhood's Hands seeks to enhance the quality of life for all residents of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County. To address the transportation needs of their Workforce Development program participants, Neighborhood Hands initially provided WSTA bus passes so that they could travel to job interviews. After participants expressed frustration trying to access multiple job interviews in different parts of the community by bus, the organization began using their van to shuttle participants using a part-time driver. This funding will increase the driver’s weekly shuttle time to 25 hours per week and will increase the hours of their part-time workforce development coordinator to better manage transportation scheduling. Funds are also supporting gas and van maintenance.  

    Grant: $60,000 to provide transportation for workforce development participants over two years
  • ResilNC is partnering with the ACCESS Center to run an accelerator program to support minority-owned construction firms and vendors to successfully bid on contracts for Innovation Quarter’s Phase 2 (IQ2). With the mission of no coaching without capital and no capital without coaching, ACCESS Center will support the businesses throughout the RFP cycle until completion of open bids. ResilNC will monitor the program and collect data on the relative value of inclusivity efforts to address wealth creation via major development and infrastructure projects. ResilNC will use this data, stories, and convenings to improve the ecosystem of capital and strategic support for Black-owned businesses in Forsyth County and throughout North Carolina.  

    Grant: $55,000 to support collaboration with the ACCESS Center to connect BIPOC and women-owned Business Enterprises to large scale development contracts
  • Ujima Community Development Corporation developed and manages Emmanuel Retirement Village, a 42-unit housing community for senior citizens. Their second phase of development includes 10 new units that are projected to be completed by fall 2022. Ujima’s existing units are fully occupied, and they continue to have a waitlist. Ujima also has an interest in exploring how they can help single family homeowners located near the retirement village with home restoration needs. The organization is one of three local community development corporations that receives annual operating support from the Foundation.

    Grant: $35,000 to support economic development activities in the City View neighborhood
  • The Winston Salem Black Chamber aims to be a resource for growing and developing Black-owned businesses and the community as a whole, with a mission to support businesses to be profitable and sustainable. The Chamber has identified the need to transition away from being solely a networking organization to offering training, coaching, and referrals to other small business ecosystem partners. The Black Chamber is currently planning a series of bootcamps to train businesses to develop their skills around resiliency and financial literacy.  

    Grant: $40,000 to improve the resiliency of Black business owners and entrepreneurs through training and technical assistance