August is National Black Philanthropy Month, a time to celebrate the long tradition of giving back in Black communities. This month, we’re celebrating and uplifting this tradition by featuring Q&As with members of the A.L. Lewis Black Opportunity & Impact Fund, a collective giving initiative at The Community Foundation.
Ronnie King is the CEO and founder of Scratchwerk and founder of MyVillage Project
Q: At The Community Foundation, we believe that philanthropy is about how we use time, talent and treasure to give back to the community. What does Black Philanthropy mean to you?
A. Black Philanthropy means treating your community like family, and unselfishly giving back to improve the lives of others.
Q: What led you to be involved in the A.L. Lewis Black Opportunity & Impact Fund?
A: I believe in the power of togetherness and enjoy working with others to make a collective impact. The A.L. Lewis Black Opportunity & Impact Fund was a great opportunity to do that.
Q: Was giving back to the community a core value in your family when you were young?
A: Volunteerism was a core value in my family growing up. My mom was constantly serving others, and it helped shape my thoughts around identifying needs and addressing them to the best of my ability.
Q: Black families donate a higher percentage of their wealth to charity, yet many Black Americans don’t consider themselves a “philanthropist”. How can we change the perception? What would you tell them?
A: I love the fact that many Black Americans don’t consider themselves a “philanthropist.” I believe it speaks to our overall culture and the fact that equity, freedom and uplifting others is expected behavior.