Mission and Values

Akonadi Foundation works to support and nurture racial justice movement building to eliminate the structural racism that lies at the heart of inequity in the United States.


All of our work at the Akonadi Foundation is guided by our vision for a racially just society. We dream of a day when all people, including youth and adults of color, enjoy the right to self-determination. When all people are respected and when all cultures are celebrated. When every community is safe, healthy, sustainable, and has an opportunity to thrive.

In service of this vision, Akonadi Foundation adopted an ambitious purpose: to support and nurture racial justice movement building to eliminate structural racism, with a specific focus in the City of Oakland. 

We do this in three ways:

• providing grants to racial justice organizations,
• communicating about our work and the work of our grant partners, and
• nurturing support for racial justice movement building in philanthropy.

Funding community organizing is an exhilarating experience in philanthropy, one that invites foundations to share in the day-to-day struggles of a campaign, as well as the climactic successes. At Akonadi we have found that it has been through hard work, strategic thinking, and tireless organizing that real change has come about.

Our racial justice philanthropy recognizes vibrant organizations in their individual work and commits to support organizations and communities coming together to foster racial justice movement building to move the City of Oakland and our country to their fullest potential for equity.

Our values at the Akonadi Foundation are guided by a commitment to:

Racial justice

We support the development of a powerful social change movement to eliminate structural racism and create a racially just society.

Leadership of communities of color

Efforts to achieve racial justice must be defined and led by the communities of color most affected by structural racism.


Efforts to achieve racial justice must be synergistic with efforts to achieve economic, gender, ability, and sexual orientation justice, as well as other forms of justice. This approach can also inform funding, organizing, and advocacy efforts aimed at increasing equity. Efforts to achieve racial justice must be grounded in the knowledge that the same systems and structures that oppress, demean, and even take the lives of individuals of color are simultaneously negatively impacting the lives of many other groups — women, for example, or economically exploited populations — and that one person or group may suffer from multiple socially/politically imposed disadvantages. This perspective can also inform funding, organizing, and advocacy efforts aimed at creating, sustaining, and increasing equity for all.

Leadership from the field

Effective foundations support and are led by the ideas, innovations, and needs of organizations directly involved in the work of racial justice.

Cultural expression

We believe cultural strategies can play a powerful role in changing hearts and minds, which ultimately shape policies and practice.