YGB Launches Movement Fund

August 3, 2019

Since its founding in the Fall of 2014, YGB has helped organize too many direct actions to count, countless freedom schools, education sessions, community conversations, debates, resource workshops and helped raise funds to meet the needs of Black and Brown people in WI and across the U.S.. Still, our organization - labeled "radical," "dangerous," and "unfindable," has remained at the fringes of financially established organizations without consistent funding. The community has missed out because of it.

While Madison and the surrounding areas continue to benefit from YGB and collaborator social justice work, the entrenched funding structures continue to avoid committed support that values and sustains real grassroots work. Our experience is not unique. 

Throughout the state of Wisconsin and across the nation, our story is lived by innumerable social change agents who just want to continue making a difference and need a little support to get there; but funders and fundraisers fail to realize a mutual benefit. In some cases, the initiatives must sacrifice impact and core values in order to become palatable to mainstream funders.

This is a big deal, and sheds light on why some of the problems we aim to solve persist in the city with the highest non-profits per capita in the state. 


Movement Fund is a crowdsourced tool to build funding for low barrier grants that support social good work that may fall outside of the usually supported criteria. Grants focus on key areas including Meeting NeedsBuilding AwarenessAdvocacy and Action.

"It's our way of bringing independence and consistency to a broken funding world." ~ Sed Smith, YGB Organizer.

Movement Fund rewards community partners that help build a network of dedicated monthly contributors who support more grants.

As a result, community partners and volunteers can generate revenues that they can choose to donate back to the fund, or improve their bottom line when they join the movement and share the opportunity to contribute.

Movement Fund makes grants to individuals and small organizations, and helps those who build the fund earn when they share the fund's opportunities.

"We believe that, if we can help improve the bottom line of organizations that get involved, we can build consistent funding for those who are too often forgotten AND create more resources for social good work." ~ Sed Smith 

The fund has already made grants but plans to use this crowdsourced referral marketing structure to generate a new level of social justice funding for our community. 

Learn More about Movement Fund and Join the Movement at MovementFund.com

Some FAQs

Who Can Apply for Funding and What Does it Cover?

Any organization or individual seeking to continue or launch initiatives that Meet Needs, Raise Awareness, promote Advocacy and Action and/or have a social justice or social good focus may apply. Applicants DO NOT need to be a registered non-profit. 

Individuals may also apply to help meet their own basic needs. 

Find our more about the application process and criteria here

Who Can Be a Collaborator to Earn Rewards by Building the Fund?

YGB invites Organizations and individuals that wish to support Movement Fund by sharing opportunities to donate, opportunities to apply for grants, and opportunities to partner and earn. Partner links are tracked and partners earn a small percentage of donations that occur as a result of their sharing. 

Ideal Movement Partners are organizations who already have a social justice presence and participate in community giving of some kind, membership based organizations with members who would love to pay slightly higher monthly fees to support social good initiatives, organizations or individuals with large audiences or contact lists, and passionate individuals who want to earn and raise funds for important work at the same time. 

Find our more about becoming a Movement Partner here

What's the Best Way for Me to Support this?

The Movement Fund has a major goal of building a strong monthly donor base and using those funds to make grants for social good. You can help by 1) Making a monthly donation here, 2) Sharing the grant opportunity with your networks, 3) Sharing the Movement Partner Opportunity with your networks. 

Each of these will help build the Movement Fund and increase our capacity to sustain social good work. 

You can start your monthly donation here



YGB Has Just Launched a Movement Fund that rewards partners and makes grants to support social justice work. Learn More at MovementFund.com

Please support our efforts by visiting our donate page here and making a monthly contribution!

To join our coalition of supporters, please click here.

Powerful Event Shows Solidarity Between Palestine and Madison’s Black Community

August 3, 2019

This Monday, January 30, an event was held at the Urban League of Madison discussing the connected persecution of Palestinians in the Middle East and Blacks in America. The presentation began with an information session about the United States' imperialistic actions on the borders of the world. On the US-Mexico border, for instance, the boundary divides indigenous desert tribes, and it is common for American guards to rape immigrants and place children as young as five in detention centers for months to separate them from their mothers.

The presenters outlined an equally desperate situation in Palestine. A 16 year old activist in Palestine named Ahed Tamimi was supposed to speak at the event but was denied her visa due to "administrative review" during the Obama Administration. Tamimi's town is under threat of being changed from Zone B (under half Israeli control and half Palestinian Authority control) to Zone C (under 100% Israeli control). The Israeli government can declare any area Zone C in a heartbeat, instantaneously making people like Tamimi "squatters" set to be evicted by illegal Israeli settlements (funded with billions of American dollars). Palestinians have no right to a translator or due process, an unfair and unjust system that perpetuates apartheid.

But Tamimi is fighting back, using an advocacy movement to protect her homeland.

Further along in the presentation, the occupation of Palestinians in the West Bank in Gaza and the occupation of Black communities in America were tied together and connected to the military-industrial complex. Every year, for example, the Urban Shield convention meets near Oakland, California, where local police departments (such as the LAPD and the NYPD) meet with international militaries (such as those of Israel, the Philippines, and Bahrain) to train, militarize, and exchange military tactics. One of these tactics was a form of tear gas that was tested by the Israeli military on Palestinians before being brought to police departments in the United States. The military-industrial complex also ties in with economics, as Hewlett Packard holds info for ICE, inmates in California, and Palestinian civilians.

Today, to stop the persecution and colonialism of both Blacks and Palestinians, we must unite together against mass incarceration, American funding to Israel, the military-industrial complex, and xenophobic actions like Trumps Muslim ban. We stand for the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) Movement and Community Control over the Police, among other community-based solutions, to solve these devastating problems.

Curriculum for White People

August 3, 2019

Petitioning The United Nations

August 3, 2019

YGB needs your voice in order to get an investigation by the United Nations as we elevate the conversation of of racial disparities in Madison and fight for justice for Tony Robinson, the unarmed black teen murdered at the hands of officer Matt Kenny of the Madison Police Department  


Racial Disparities and Police Brutality (The Facts)

August 3, 2019

Incarceration and other Racial Disparities in Dane County and Wisconsin

Racial Disparities in Dane County:

  • 25% Black unemployment rate, compared to 4.8% for whites
  • 74% of Black youth live in poverty, compared to 5.5% of white youth
  • Black students are 15 times more likely to be suspended from school than whites
  • Black youth face a 15 times greater risk of being put in foster care than whites
  • Black youth are 15 times more likely to spend time in county detention than whites
  • Black teens are 6 times more likely to be arrested than white teens
  • Black adults are arrested at a rate of 8 to 1 compared to white adults
  • 11 to 1 by Madison Police Department in 2013 according to updated statistics
  • Black men make up 4.8% of Dane County and 43% of the Dane County Jail

Source: Race to Equity: A Baseline Report on the State of Racial Disparities in Dane County. Wisconsin Council on Children and Families, Madison, WI. 2013.

Racial Disparities in Imprisonment in Wisconsin:

  • More than 50% of Black men in their early 30s in Wisconsin have been in state prison
  • Nearly 13% of Wisconsin’s working-age Black men are in jail or prison, the highest incarceration rate in the United States
  • Nearly 8% of Wisconsin’s working-age Native American men are locked up
  • Wisconsin’s prison population is more than 40% Black; Blacks comprise 5% of Wisconsin’s voting-age population
  • ex-felons under correctional supervision, and those currently in prison or jail cannot vote   in Wisconsin
  • Only about 10% of Black men with incarceration records hold a valid Wisconsin driver’s license

Sources: Pawasarat, John and Lois M. Quinn. Statewide Imprisonment of Black Men in Wisconsin. Employment and Training Institute, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 2014.

Pawasarat, John and Lois M. Quinn. Wisconsin’s Mass Incarceration of African American Males: Workforce Challenges for 2013. Employment and Training Institute, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 2013.


Police Homicides, Excessive Force and Non-Indictments

Justified Homicide:

The methodology the FBI uses to collect information on police “justified” homicides is lacking. Only 750 of 16,000 police precincts report.

In 2013, the FBI tallied 461 “justifiable homicides” committed by law enforcement. This is the highest number in two decades, even as the nation’s overall homicide rate continues to drop. The FBI records a homicide as "justifiable" when there is not a conviction of the law enforcement official. (http://www.gannett-cdn.com/experiments/usatoday/exp/police-shootings.svg)

Homicides committed by on-duty law enforcement made up 3 percent of the 14,196 homicides committed in the United States in 2013. (http://www.thenation.com/article/190937/why-its-impossible-indict-cop)

The Department of Justice has offered its own study that estimates approximately 900 justified police homicides a year. Here is an article that summarizes that study: http://www.vox.com/2015/3/5/8156689/police-shooting-deaths

Between 1991 and 2013, an average of 96 black people have been killed by white police officers each year. (http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/11/11/police-killings-hundreds/18818663/?siteID=je6NUbpObpQ-kjMP3xkzQ3NGDhFex0riUQ)

Excessive Force:

Plumhoff v. Rickard, 2014. In a 9-0 Supreme Court decision the justices decided that it was not "excessive force" when police shot 15 rounds in car after a high speed car chase, killing the car's driver and passenger. The court wrote, “that if police officers are justified in firing at a suspect in order to end a severe threat to public safety, the officers need not stop shooting until the threat has ended.” (http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/plumhoff-v-rickard/)


Graham v. Connor, 1989. In this case, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that “the reasonableness of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, and its calculus must embody an allowance for the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second decisions about the amount of force necessary in a particular situation.” It is because of this case that officers are rarely indicted when the kill civilians. They can claim they reasonably feared for their life and acted accordingly. (http://hanfordsentinel.com/news/local/crime/use-of-force-what-does-the-law-say/article_04a4ad69-7dd5-5099-a1e8-e764ab26c9b2.html)