MacKenzie Scott today announced a $2 million grant to Souls Grown Deep Foundation and Community Partnership as part of her commitment to the Giving Pledge. Souls Grown Deep will put the funds towards its mission to promote Black artists from the American South and to foster economic empowerment and racial and social justice in these artists’ communities.
Scott’s latest round of giving includes arts and cultural organizations, citing their ability to “strengthen communities by transforming spaces, fostering empathy, reflecting community identity, advancing economic mobility, improving academic outcomes, lowering crime rates, and improving mental health.” Souls Grown Deep was selected among smaller arts organizations that create these benefits with artists and audiences from culturally rich regions and identify groups that donors often overlook.
Souls Grown Deep’s commitment to racial and social justice is at the core of its mission, enacted through grant-making, values-aligned investments, and advocacy. Recent initiatives include a major investment in the Black-owned, sustainable fashion brand Paskho to foster employment in the quilting community in Gee’s Bend, Alabama; the launch of a Resale Royalty Award Program to issue monetary awards to living artists whose works are sold to museums through the Foundation’s Collections Transfer program, which has to date placed over 500 artworks by over 100 artists in the permanent collections of more than twenty institutions; and additional investments in cultural and economic infrastructure in Black artist communities across the Deep South. This infusion of support from Scott will allow the Foundation and Community Partnership to continue expanding its work across all of these areas.