#CLTGiveBlack An Opportunity To Address Social Disparities

CHARLOTTE, NC – Thousands of people across Charlotte donated to Black led and operated non-profits on Friday as part of CLTGivesBlack. The initiative spread throughout social media and led to companies and individuals opening their wallets. 

“The future holds nothing but greatness for us,” said Jonathan Gardner, the founder of Gardhouse.

He says he is thankful for all the people that supported his organization. He raised nearly $10,000 dollars on Friday. 

“We wanted to be able to signify the importance of the day and how pouring in that $28 could save a life,” said Gardner. 

Gardhouse helps college students of color enter the workforce. He says gaining employment is key to economic mobility. 

“We wanted to be able to provide something that was different to break up that downward trend,” said Gardner. 

He says the #CLTGiveBlack initiative is something that people can do to better their communities. With more than 400 minority-owned businesses in Charlotte, the options are plentiful. 

“I think a lot of times we try and find these grand ways of getting things done, you know initiate change, but truth be told is that change can happen if you just look in your backyard,” said Gardner. 

The Center for Community Transitions saw more traction on their social media pages today as well.  Patrice Funderburg took over the non-profit as it’s first Black executive director earlier this year. 

They support individuals and families that are impacted by incarceration. 

“Here in the state of North Carolina we know Black people represent 22% of the population and close to 60% of the incarcerated population,” said Funderburg. 

They work at the intersection of that disparity to try and close the gap. She says recent protests over the police killing of George Floyd and shooting of Jacob Blake generated nationwide conversations about disparities in the Black community. 

“This is an opportunity for us as a community in very collective ways in particularly in the criminal justice sector to really address, target, and really address those systemic issues,” said Funderburg. 

Charlotte based Belk stepped in to support three different Black led philanthropic efforts in the Charlotte area. It gave a total of $75,000 dollars.