Contact: Dina Horwedel, Director of Public Education, American Indian College Fund, 303-426-8900, [email protected]

Denver, Colo.—December 7, 2021—The American Indian College Fund (College Fund) announced that it has received a $1 million grant from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) to support the College Fund’s work helping Indigenous students access a higher education. The College Fund’s work creates greater education equity in Native communities, while lifting families out of poverty. The grant is part of CZI’s five-year, $500 million investment CZI announced in December 2020.

Building on key investments CZI made since its founding five years ago, the organization has embarked on an enterprise-wide effort to more consistently and systematically apply a racial equity lens to its work.

“Embedding a racial equity lens across CZI’s philanthropic areas of focus will help us drive the impact and results that we are all working to achieve,” said CZI’s Head of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Belinda Stubblefield. “As part of this critical work, we are engaging changemakers, community members, and movement builders with deep expertise and lived experience as partners, helping to shape our strategies and actions. We are dedicated to this work for the long term.”

The College Fund was chosen for the grant based on its longtime work in Tribal communities with Indigenous students through providing scholarships, academic and career programs, and its financial and programmatic support for the nation’s 35 accredited tribal colleges and universities located on or near Indian reservations.

Cheryl Crazy Bull, President and CEO of the American Indian College Fund, said, “Native students give back to their communities through their deep commitment to improving their well-being and that of their families; through their entrepreneurship and work ethic; and through their creative and transformative vision. CZI’s support of equity through this grant helps us support our students as they build better lives.”

The College Fund’s work was chosen in addition to that of over 90 other non-profit organizations whose work promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion.

 

About The American Indian College Fund

The American Indian College Fund has been the nation’s largest charity supporting Native higher education for 32 years. The College Fund believes “Education is the answer” and provided $15.5 million in scholarships and other direct student support to American Indian students last year. Since its founding in 1989 the College Fund has provided more than $259 million in scholarships, program, and community support. The College Fund also supports a variety of academic and support programs at the nation’s 35 accredited tribal colleges and universities, which are located on or near Indian reservations, ensuring students have the tools to graduate and succeed in their careers. The College Fund consistently receives top ratings from independent charity evaluators and is one of the nation’s top 100 charities named to the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance. For more information about the American Indian College Fund, please visit www.collegefund.org.

Journalists: On second reference, the American Indian College Fund does not use the acronym AICF. Instead, please use the College Fund.