New grants available to explore history of race in Hampton Roads

Posted at 3:20 PM, Sep 16, 2020

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Exploring the history of race in south Hampton Roads - that's the focus of a new grant opportunity.

It's a combined effort between the Hampton Roads Community Foundation and Va. Humanities.

"Many times it's uncomfortable for people to have conversations [about race], but using history as a foundation to have conversations, it's really helpful," said Vivian Oden, Vice Pres. of Special Projects with the Hampton Roads Community Foundation.

They'll be giving out grants of $5,000 - $10,000 to not-for-profit organizations.

Projects should explore things like the history of race in the area, the continuing impact of systemic racism and concerns of African American people in south Hampton Roads.

The goal is to educate people and get a conversation going.

“A lot of times people don't know the history. Just even as a society, people don't know about things like Black Wall Street or Juneteenth, and so within our region some people probably don't even know about the Norfolk 17 and the integration of schools or why different neighborhoods have formed,” said Oden.

Oden says they hope these projects will then help them find ways to advance racial justice moving forward.

Online information sessions on applying will take place Oct. 7 and 14.

Applications must be submitted by Dec. 1.

You can learn more by clicking here.

The grants are part of the "Beneath the Surface" initiative launched in 2019, which is aimed at helping people better understand race and the history of race in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach.

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