It is worth reminding nonprofit and foundation leaders that – despite our constant journey of improvement in service to our communities –our organizations are deeply trusted by the American public to do the work we do. In fact, in our 2020 trust survey, we found that 81% of people had confidence in nonprofits’ ability to strengthen society. Similarly, 68% of people reported that they were confident in philanthropy to do the same.
We have explored these statistics in the last year and uncovered much of the nuances of the data. In conversation with leaders like you, we have explored what these trust numbers mean about our responsibility and our ability to build a healthier and more just civil society and country. We have recognized that our collective leadership in times of national crisis and recovery is deeply impactful for all people in the United States, but especially for those experiencing systemic forms of marginalization. It’s with that understanding that Independent Sector is working closely with The White House and the Made to Save Coalition for the national We Can Do This Month of Action to ensure that than70% of adults are at least partially vaccinated by July 4, 2021. We’re asking you to join us in this effort.
For many of you, the fight against COVID-19 has been constant and ongoing since the global pandemic was declared in early 2020. For example, Dr. Rami Nashashibi, founder and executive director of Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN), spoke to our community in the March Upswell Pop-Up about the need to do this work in deeply community-informed ways. He implored leaders to meet people where they are and understand the role of trust in accessing and using the health care system as we move forward in COVID-19 recovery. IMAN, like many other local community-based organizations, are already making immense progress in driving people toward vaccinations, and we urge other nonprofits join them.
The We Can Do This Month of Action provides the tools and resources to meet an ambitious goal. While our sector is known to collectively work to meet these big moments, the cost of confronting crisis does further constrain already tight budgets. That’s why we are pleased to see that the Department of Health and Human Services is administrating $250 million additional grants to community-based organizations to increase COVID-19 vaccine access.
Please use the resources on our website to learn more about this effort, get involved, and share with your networks and communities. Consider how you might encourage everyone who qualifies to get vaccinated. We still have so much work to do beyond COVID-19 to address the health of our people, systems, and country and fight systemic racism at every turn, but we need to come together now to get through this crisis. Collectively, we can create a healthier and more just world.