Black History Month serves as a reminder of the critical work ahead at AEP for promoting diversity, equity and inclusion. AEP Ohio and the AEP Foundation are putting words into action. In addition to encouraging our workforce to focus personally on pushing for change, the foundation has established a five-year, $5 million “Delivering on the Dream: Social and Racial Justice” grant program that funds organizations dedicated to advancing social and racial justice in the communities we serve.
Here’s a look at some of organizations receiving support through the Delivering on a Dream program.
YMCA Columbus ($1 million): YWCA Columbus will use the grant to advocate for policies that promote housing justice and economic mobility for women and people of color through the newly established AEP Foundation Center for Racial Equity. The YWCA’s multi-pronged approach includes Diversity, Equity & Inclusion training to increase racial literacy, increasing staff capacity for advocacy activities, developing new programming around local elections and civic engagement, and other efforts to support equitable policies to improve life outcomes for women and communities of color. Story
Zora’s House ($200,000): The only co-working and community space in Columbus dedicated to women of color, Zora’s House will use the grant will help fund full-time staff and further the organization’s mission to help these women connect, grow their talents and advance their leadership in the community. Story
Community Legal Aid Services ($200,000): Community Legal Aid is a nonprofit law firm serving the legal needs of low-income individuals and families in northeast Ohio. Through legal advocacy for policies that focus on removing barriers, the organization transforms the lives of those in poverty by increasing opportunities, fairness and stability for a stronger community and justice for all. Story
Catholic Social Services ($100,000): The grant will support the nonprofit’s Our Lady of Guadalupe Center, which offers services to Columbus’ Hispanic community including English as a Second Language classes, financial assistance, food pantry access, legal services and job readiness assistance. Story
Additionally, AEP Ohio is proud to support the Columbus Kappa Foundation’s Thanksgiving Turkey and Christmas Toy giveaways and other organizations to help to drive equity for customers, neighbors and people of color.