M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust

The Murdock Trust is committed to the flourishing of all Pacific Northwest communities. During certain months of the year, we join those honoring the contributions, successes, and challenges of specific groups among us. February is Black History Month, and though the Trust is invested in listening to and uplifting our African American neighbors throughout the year, we are grateful for a dedicated moment to share some of our grantees doing impactful work within the Black community of the Pacific Northwest. 

As our country honors the profound impact that Black individuals have made on the history and current moment of our nation, we at the Murdock Trust have a unique opportunity to celebrate the work of nonprofits that uplift and serve this community daily. From creating equal education opportunities to preparing youth for critical careers to strengthening lives through mentorships, nonprofits across our region support and celebrate our Black community in ways that work toward lasting change. Here are just a few such groups we were honored to support through grants in 2023:

Supporters and members of Alaska Black Caucus in Juneteenth celebration holding signs and smiling
Alaska Black Caucus
  • Alaska Black Caucus has been asserting the Constitutional rights of Alaska’s Black community since 1975. Weekly Community Conversations on issues of importance, support for local Black-owned businesses, and a variety of events create opportunities for Alaska’s Black community to be actively involved in decisions that affect their wellbeing. Renovations of their Equity Center will position them to support Alaskans well into the future.  
  • HOLLA is a mentorship movement in Portland, OR, that engages its community to recognize the power and potential of Black, Brown, and Indigenous youth. Through culturally responsive relationships, this nonprofit provides opportunities for representation, enrichment, and exposure through athletics, arts, college prep, and more. Programming and staffing support will enhance the expansion of their services to mentor more youth. 
Four men and one woman dressed in business professional attire standing in front of an AYCO sign smiling
African Youth & Community Organization
  • African Youth & Community Organization is a nonprofit led by and for the East African immigrant and refugee community in the Portland Metropolitan Area. Founded in 2009, this organization strives to strengthen a sense of cultural identity within immigrant groups while also enhancing capacity toward integration and hope for the future. The new Dream Center is the nonprofit’s first permanent location, offering space for its transformative work.
Two male students working on a STEM project together
iUrban Teen
  • As we have heard from community leaders, Black students often start their education at a disadvantage, and nonprofits like iUrban Teen are working to correct this. This Washington nonprofit offers career-focused education to underrepresented teens ages 13 to 18. Their mission is to build an educational community rooted in trust, empowerment, inclusivity, and community, and to see historically excluded students succeed. New staff will increase their capacity to welcome all students into STEM careers. 

Communities flourish when all members have a chance to thrive. We are grateful to have a front-seat view to transformative work toward enabling flourishing for all in our region, and specifically to celebrate the support and success of our Black neighbors today. May your good work continue as you build on the legacy of those who came before you, and work toward a brighter future for all.

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