Puget Sound AFN is a regional network of grantmakers—private, public, corporate, and community foundations—who invest in policies, programs, changes in practices as well as financial products as tools to confront the roots of inequities and create change. We view the concept of assets broadly to include issues such as health, employment, business ownership, housing, post-secondary education, and public and private debt. In this way, AFN accounts for multiple interrelated dimensions of assets for the household as well as community and intergenerational family wealth.
We believe targeted wealth generation is an essential component of racial justice. In 1865, the promise of 40 acres and a mule — an idea generated by Black people and promised by General Sherman and then President Lincoln — intended both reparations for the harm of slavery and a means to freely build wealth and pass it on to the next generation. The quick abandonment of that order is one example of a legacy of broken promises and unequal treatment that lives on in the present day widening of racial wealth disparities and other racial disparities. So too does the work to fulfill its promise for true equality, freedom, and justice. Puget Sound area grantmakers should contact Annette Case if interested in joining this chapter.
How We Work
- Inform: Puget Sound AFN is positioned to highlight promising practices, key issues, and innovations in the field through funder-only dialogues as well as other convenings. Members provide an insightful West Coast voice to develop and expand the networks of funders for peer-to-peer learning, as well as cross-sector and collaborative efforts and inform national conversations.
- Connect: Puget Sound AFN members learn from each other and from other organizations as they seek solutions to local challenges in underserved areas and focus on increasing their impact. The chapter convenes regularly to learn together, act, and invest to uphold modern ideas of 40 acres and a mule by preventing further harm from the continuous generational loss of wealth and to purposefully build wealth for Black, Indigenous, and other people of color and immigrant and refugee communities.
- Influence: Puget Sound AFN engages key stakeholders to grow their knowledge and support. This includes efforts to shift narratives of wealth and power by making visible the hidden and unwritten rules that support white privilege and hold people from other communities back, and developing narratives that catalyze public will for changes that promote equity. AFN also identifies and supports initiatives that help change the rules to advance racial and wealth equity.
- Build: Puget Sound AFN seeks to build the number of grantmakers and resources focused on strategies and investments for low and moderate income people to build and protect assets increasing economic opportunities and prosperity. AFN is working to grow our coordinated network of funders advancing racial economic justice by addressing root causes of wealth disparities. Philanthropy plays a critical role in generating capital flow and seeding big ideas.
Regional Focus Areas
- Government debt
- Affordable housing
- Equity in tax systems
Are you a Puget Sound area grantmaker interested in joining this chapter? Contact us to learn more.
Annette Case, firstname.lastname@example.org
Northwest Credit Union Foundation
JP Morgan Chase & Co
Kaiser Permanente Washington
Pacific Northwest Program Officer
WHAT COMES NEXT? Challenges and Priorities for Creating a More Equitable Future
On June 4, 2021, Puget Sound AFN and West Coast Poverty Center invited fellow stakeholders from the policy, non-profit, philanthropic, and research sectors for shared learning and conversation about upcoming challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as to discuss opportunities the pandemic revealed for how we can work together to provide shared prosperity for all. LEARN MORE
Learn more about our collaboration
In 2020, Puget Sound AFN launched a collaborative project to prevent further harm from the continuous generational loss of wealth and to purposefully build wealth for Black, Indigenous, and other people of color and immigrant and refugee communities. Acting together in this capacity, we aim to advance thriving communities throughout our region.
View the launch event video featuring Don Baylor AFN Board Chair and Andrea Sanderson Caupain, CEO of Byrd Barr Place.
The Seattle Foundation sponsored the launch of All In WA, a coordinated statewide COVID-19 relief effort powered by a coalition of public officials, companies, philanthropic leaders, community foundations, United Way organizations, community leaders, frontline nonprofits, and individuals. These groups came together to provide immediate critical and emergency support for workers and families most affected across Washington State, and to mobilize committed community and philanthropic groups to go All In for WA. LEARN MORE ABOUT ALL IN WA
On November 19, 2020, Puget Sound AFN, in partnership with the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, met to discuss how the racialized history of our state property and sales tax creates wealth advantages for some while extracting wealth from and further disinvesting in Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color as well as low income households, continuously widening wealth inequities.
We discussed promising solutions on the table for the next legislative session designed to change the structure for greater equity while generating needed revenue to invest in our communities. We also provided opportunities for philanthropy to support immediate system changes as well as help build for a redesign of the tax code over the longer term to support racial wealth equity.