Key Points

· This article is intended to provide the field of philanthropy with a useful framework for organizing racial-equity efforts.

· When the Washington-based Consumer Health Foundation became a staffed foundation in 1998, its initial grantmaking focused on health promotion and access to health care. As a learning organization, however, it took steps that led to greater support for efforts addressing the interconnectedness between health status and racial equity. This included support for advocacy as a strategy to create systems change benefiting low-income communities of color.

· This commitment to racial equity is not a separate initiative; it is integrated into all aspects of CHF’s governance, operations, and program strategy: board and staff education on structural racism, developing diversity and racial equity indicators to guide operations, providing capacity-building support to grantees to enable racial-equity planning, and advocacy grantmaking in areas such as language access for populations with limited proficiency in English.

· This article presents historical milestones and the key drivers that stimulated an organizational commitment to this approach, with examples of how racial equity is operationalized in all aspects of the foundation’s work and opportunities for continued growth.

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