Liberated Paths Grantmaking Program

Building a More Just and Sustainable Outdoor and Environmental Movement Together

Black, Indigenous, and People of Color-led organizations are on the frontlines of the grassroots work being done to build a better planet but our work is chronically overlooked and underfunded. We know that when our voices are left out, our communities suffer, and our planet does too. With the Liberated Paths Program, we envision a way to bridge that gap. 

Through this program, we are working to create a more just and sustainable outdoor and environmental movement by shifting resources to and building power with Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Color. The Liberated Paths Program supports outdoor initiatives and organizations that cultivate and celebrate the contributions of Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Color and affirm the many experiences and identities our communities hold, through grantmaking, capacity building, and network building.

Grantmaking

CALIFORNIA COAST

PACIFIC NORTHWEST

SOUTHWEST

DELAWARE RIVER WATERSHED

NORTH AND SOUTH CAROLINA

YOUTH ACCESS TO NATURE

Through our Liberated Paths regional grants, we support organizations and initiatives of all sizes located in California, the Pacific Northwest (Oregon and Washington), the Southwest (Arizona and New Mexico), and the Delaware River Watershed that work at the intersection of racial justice, outdoor experiences, and the environment. In 2023, we will also launch grantmaking in North and South Carolina. Our Liberated Paths: Youth Access to Nature Fund supports efforts in the San Francisco Bay Area that increase safe and equitable access to the outdoors for Young People of Color.

We work with leaders and organizations who are rooted within their communities with the lived experiences to understand how to best advance justice and center the needs of the community. We support Leaders of Color to design and lead the types of joyful outdoor experiences and environmental efforts that are most meaningful to them and their communities. 

The Liberated Paths Grantmaking Program prioritizes:

  • Organizations or projects led by and serving Black, Indigenous, and/or Communities of Color
  • Organizations or projects with an annual budget of less than $1 million
  • Organizations or projects that have limited relationships with and/or funding streams from the larger philanthropic community

Liberated Paths support looks like: 

  • Relationship-driven and trust-based support
  • Multi-year grants of $1,000 to $20,000 per year when possible
  • Long-term, deep engagement in financial, operational, and fundraising capacity building
  • Network building with a cohort of grantees to facilitate shared learning and systems-level changes
  • Eligibility that is not hinged on organization size, ability to do impact reporting, or 501(c)(3) status
  • Support for organizations and initiatives of all sizes and in all stages of their development
  • Prioritized funding for organizations and initiatives led by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color
  • Capacity building trainings and workshops for grantee partners

Click here to learn about becoming an investor in the fund.

Applying

Applications for 2022 have been closed. Please check back or follow us on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram for next year’s announcement.

Capacity Building

Our model offers financial grants, as well as consistent coaching and mentorship. We want to connect our grantee partners with the tools and resources they need to sustain their vital work. To that end, in addition to trainings and workshops for all grantee partners, we work with each partner to identify areas where they want to grow and tailor our support to their needs. These areas could include: board recruitment, financial sustainability, staffing and hiring considerations, executive leadership coaching, budget planning, program design, insurance and liability considerations, safety, guidance on applications for additional grants, and more.

Network Building

Through Liberated Paths, we seek to bring together organizations and leaders working at the intersection of environment and racial justice. We do this through virtual get-togethers and information sessions. We facilitate network building within each cohort of grantees to facilitate shared learning and systems-level changes.

We also bring together funders and partners through a webinar series to connect, share information about the Liberated Paths Grantmaking Program and to also hold critical conversations regarding topics such as the explicit role of race in Liberated Paths, the racial funding gap, and racial bias and its impact in philanthropy.

Previous Webinar Recordings + Passcodes 

Webinar Session #1 (July 13th) – passcode: 0Bs@8EbB

Webinar Session #2 (July 22nd) – passcode: #F^HU5Yz (link to ancient trade route map)

Webinar Session #3 (Aug 5th)    – passcode: 5U$Pxdam

We invite you to e-mail Efraín Delgado, Liberated Paths Communications & Program Manager, at efrain@justiceoutside.org if you have any questions about the program.

Past Grantees

Click on each year to access list of grantees in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021.

The featured photo at the top of this page depicts grantee partner organization Trail Mixed Collective and was taken by Blake Peterson.