Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

What are reparations and why are they due?

The case for reparations to descendants of enslaved people is quite simple: African-Americans were forcibly taken from their homes in Africa, enslaved and forced to work for white Americans for over 250 years in abysmal conditions with no remuneration. The “40 acres and a mule” promised to each Black family upon emancipation was never delivered.  Even after emancipation, practices such as sharecropping and enactment of Jim Crow laws ensured that African Americans were economically hamstrung, effectively barred from participating in the American Dream. These practices continue to this day, evolving with the times.

The U.S. made reparations to Japanese-Americans who were incarcerated in U.S. camps during WWII.

Germany made reparations to holocaust survivors and Israel after WWII as payment for the holocaust.

It’s time.


What is Denver Black Reparations Council's relationship to The Denver Foundation?

Denver Black Reparations Council maintains, manages and disburses reparative grants from two funds.

A fund at The Denver Foundation houses monies raised by Reparations Circle Denver, a giving circle of The Denver Foundation, which can be granted to Black-led 501(c)3s to benefit the Black community.  The Denver Foundation actively collaborates with Reparations Circle Denver and the Denver Black Reparations Council in processing donations made to this fund.

Denver Black Reparations Council also manages its own fund, which may additionally be used to fund reparative grants to businesses, individuals, and projects.

What is Denver Black Reparations Council's relationship with Reparations Circle Denver?

Reparations Circle Denver, a giving circle of The Denver Foundation, provides educational learning tools and support for white people interested in learning about reparations and working on local reparative efforts.  Funds raised by Reparations Circle Denver are housed at the Denver Foundation and managed and deployed in the Black community by the Denver Black Reparations Council, whose mission is to rebuild and sustain institutions and traditions that were destroyed, damaged, or prevented from thriving as the result of the enslavement of African and African descendant people and the aftermath of slavery.

What does the symbol in your logo signify?


"Help me and let me help you"

We chose this Adinkra symbol of cooperation and interdependence to represent our philosophy of repair.

How can my faith community participate?

Our partner Reparations Circle Denver coordinates our faith community programs.  Faith communities are welcome to participate in several ways:

  • Joining Reparations Circle Denver's cohort-based reparations education programs
  • Joining Reparations Circle Denver's public reparations education programs
  • Funding a reparative grant-cycle ($50K or more) through Reparations Circle Denver's reparations fund at The Denver Foundation.
  • Co-funding a reparative grant cycle with another faith community

For more information, please contact us at

Don't local reparations effort hurt the national effort?

Ultimately, a national program of reparations is necessary to effect true repair for 400 years of slavery, Black Codes, Jim Crow laws and the many other federal, state and local policies that have blocked Black economic progress and resulted in the current 10:1 racial wealth gap.

Yet, harm happens at the local level and must therefore be repaired at the local level.  Our belief is that if repair begins at the local level, it will provide momentum for the national reparations movement as well.

How do I learn more about the reparations movement? Do you have an education program?

Please check out the resources on our website:

Videos - Denver Black Reparations Council Inc.

Books - Denver Black Reparations Council Inc.

Essays - Denver Black Reparations Council Inc.

Presentations - Denver Black Reparations Council Inc.

In addition, our partners Reparations Circle Denver and offer extensive educational materials on their sites.  Reparations Circle Denver will launch its education program in winter 2022/2023.

Reparative Grant Cycle Questions

How often do you launch reparative grant cycles?

In 2023, we will have two reparative grant cycles benefitting Black-led 501c3s, through our fund at The Denver Foundation.

The Spring cycle opens February 1, 2023 and closes March 15, 2023

The Fall cycle opens September 12th, 2023 and closes October 18th, 2023

DBRC will also provide direct grants to businesses, projects and individuals beginning later in 2023. 

What reparative projects will contributions fund?

Grants given by the Denver Black Reparations Council are focused on rebuilding and sustaining institutions and traditions that were destroyed, damaged, or prevented from thriving as the result of the enslavement of African and African descendant people and the aftermath of slavery.  This includes funding grants to:

  • Build economic strength, generational wealth acquisition and financial literacy
  • Support Black entrepreneurial ventures
  • Preserve and expand Black history, culture, knowledge and awareness
  • Enhance mental and physical health access and public health education
  • Provide quality education from early childhood through adulthood, including reimagination of career options and pathways
  • Enhance community building and advocacy that responds to the needs of Black residents
  • Provide access, including transportation, to critical life sustaining services
  • Support entities seeking to become a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organization
  • Create openings for transformative change that is both systematic and relational
  • Provide emergency support that leads to sustained growth and development connections
How often may my organization apply for grant funding?

Black-led 501c3 organizations that meet our requirements may apply during any open grant cycle.  However, if your organization has applied before and has not been awarded funds, we recommend submitting a revised request rather than resubmitting a prior application.

My organization was awarded a grant this year - when may we apply again?

Black-led 501c3 organizations awarded grant funding in a particular year must wait one year before applying for funding again.

What are the reporting requirements if my organization is awarded a grant?

There are no specific reporting requirements; DBRC will contact your organization periodically just to check in and see how your project or work is going.  In the future, DBRC and our partner RCD hope to collaborate with our grantees in a variety of ways.

May we apply for project/program funding ?

Your organization may apply for either specific project or program funding or for a general operating grant. Project or program grants require more specificity regarding total budget for the project or program and project goals.

May partner oprganizations apply for a grant together?

The organization that will administer or lead the program or project should be the primary applicant.  The application includes a section to describe partnerships with other organizations and what each organization's role in the program or project is.

Is there a cap to grant awards?

Currently, our grant cycles award a total of $50,000 among all grantees.  Individual awards are currently between $2,500 - $7,500.  We do not recommend asking for more than $7,500, the current cap for an award.

May white-led organizations apply for reparative grants to benefit Black-led organizations or projects?

Generally, grant applicants must be Black-led and Black-serving 501(c)(3) organizations, projects or businesses located in the state of Colorado.  Certain projects led by non-Black organizations but related to preserving Black history or culture or providing benefit to the Black community may also qualify, on a case-by-case basis.  Please contact us directly for more information.

We're not a 501c3 - can we still apply for a grant?

DBRC will fund businesses, projects and individuals as part of its future reparative grant cycles.  Sign up for our occasional newsletters and stay tuned!

Meanwhile, your neighborhood group may qualify for a Strengthening Neighborhoods grant from The Denver Foundation:

Strengthening Neighborhoods - Denver Foundation