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UrbanMinistry.org is a web portal for Christians serving the poor. In 2009, our Websites had 2,175,309 unique visitors and provided a “Wikipedia” of urban ministry with 70,465 sermons, articles, grant listings and videos.
One of the most significant areas of systemic racism is the limited funding and resources available to nonprofits led by people of color. A study by the Greenlining Institute in 2006 showed that only 3.6% of funding from foundations went to nonprofits let by people of color. This is despite the fact that people of color make up 52.4% of poverty in the United States, but only 16.5% of nonprofits are led by people of color. We have documented in detail many of the systemic reasons for this in our online Webcast at http://www.urbanministry.org/fundingbias. One of the most significant reasons for this bias is a lack of strategies of funders that specifically target Black and Latino leaders in faith-based organizations. Our data shows that over two-thirds of Black and Latino nonprofit leaders are in faith-based organizations (FBOs). These groups are almost being entirely missed in the strategies of many online nonprofit capacity building initiatives.
The Strategy: UrbanMinistry.org
UrbanMinistry.org is a program of TechMission that serves as portal targeting Black and Latino faith-based organizations. In 2009, UrbanMinistry.org (and sub-sites) is on track to have over 2.5 million unique visitors and will be the most visited site in the faith-based social services sector and among Black and Latino nonprofit leaders. The site has almost 75,000 pages of content including thousands of nonprofit workshops, conference materials, best practices combining the features of Wikipedia, YouTube, Audio Podcasts and social networking for the nonprofit world. The site is analogous to Idealist.org, but it currently has twice the representation of people of color visiting the site (because of its focus on faith-based social services where most Black and Latino nonprofit leaders work). In 2009, this site (and ChristianVolunteering.org) will match at least 7,500 volunteers. All of these resources are provided for free, but nonprofit leaders needing more advanced training can pay to take accredited college courses through our online school City Vision College that is integrated with UrbanMinistry.org. Our strategy for addressing systemic racism is to direct capacity building resources to Black, Latino and indegenously-led nonprofits. This includes the following goals across TechMission programs for the next year:
- UrbanMinistry.org will provide 125,000 pages of capacity building content to 3.5 million unique website visitors, which we estimate will provide $3 million in social value (Value of Webpage $.50/month/page * 4 clicks/month/page * 12 months = $24/year/page
- ChristianVolunteering.org: We plan to match 10,000 volunteers through our websites, which will provide volunteer time valued at $6,521,200 (value of a volunteer match is $651.20 from VolunteerMatch and the Independent Sector).
- City Vision College: We will provide over 20 accredited online courses in nonprofit management and addiction counseling to over 275 student enrollments, which will provide a social value of $233,750 (social value of a course: $1350/course University of Phoenix - $500/ course City Vision = $850/enrollment
- TechMission Corps: We will place a total of 70 full-time interns (60 AmeriCorps and 10 City Vision interns) in about 40 nonprofit organizations providing a social value of $2,409,750 (Value of Intern = $34,425 from 1700 hours x $20.25/hour value of volunteer time from Independent Sector 07). Currently 77% of our internship sites are led by people of color.
- Total Social Value: Our overall strategy will provide $12,164,700 in social value using an organizational budget of $1,320,952, resulting in a social return on investment (RoI) of 920%.
We project that more than 60% of this $12.16 million in resources will go toward Black and Latino led nonprofit organizations serving low-income communities. What makes TechMission unique is its ability to provide a high social return on investment and have the majority of the resources go to Black and Latino-led nonprofits where there is greatest need. By doing this, our goal is to counter the systemic bias against funding nonprofits led by people of color. Another part of what makes TechMission unique also is that because of the leverage provided by our use of technology and the Internet, we have been able to dramatically grow our social RoI from 210% in 2006 to a projected 920% social RoI in 2009-2010. We project that the grown of our social RoI will continue to increase at about the same rate for at least the next five years. Based on our high RoI in getting resources to Black and Latino communities, UrbanMinistry.org is a very strategic investment to address systemic racism.