LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The Louisville Urban League is seeking $50 million dollars from area leaders in hopes of getting Black people integrated for success into the community.
It just received a grant for $8 million from a New York philanthropic group, Blue Meridian Partners, to fund programs to help integrate ‘Black Louisville’ for success.
Sadiqa Reynolds, the Louisville Urban League president, says the grant shows the organization that the voices of protesters, Black families and business owners have been heard.
“It is really good news,” Reynolds said. “It’s exciting to have people from outside your community say ‘We see you, we see the work, we want to make sure help move it forward.’ That’s what it’s all about.”
Reynolds says the money will be invested in Louisville’s Black community. The CEO says the money will transform lives, allowing Black people to learn how to be a business owner, homeowner and get educated.
“You can simultaneously be disgusted and inspired by these times,” Reynolds said. “It’s frustrating. We are in 2020 dealing with racial challenges and impact of racial injustice and racism.”
Reynolds said Louisville’s population is 24% Black, but only 2.4% of businesses are Black-owned. Compared to other cities the same size as Louisville, the ‘Compassionate City’ ranks last by a wide margin. Reynolds said the numbers should be a wake-up call to local companies, leaders and the community and a call to action to do their part.
“People look at the news and say ‘Why? why are they doing this? Why do they keep talking about Black people? It seems like they’re getting everything.’ No, that’s not the case at all,” Reynolds said. “You have to understand and have perspective.”