At the Participatory Budgeting Project, we believe what must come next is real community decision-making power, between and beyond elections. We are asking you to make a donation and invest in the possibility of what’s next.
We hope that you will join us as we build together to shape our future. We look forward to working alongside partners to strengthen participatory democracy and people’s power to make decisions on that which affects their lives the most.
Letter from the Co-Eds
This last year has demanded unprecedented levels of learning, growth and care from us all. As an organization committed to transforming democracy, we have likewise made internal transformations that reflect our values. For the first time in our organization's brief, but eventful, history, we are writing to you as three Co-EDs who are sharing and building power with a growing team.
Taking care of our team doesn’t start or stop with a global pandemic. It means fostering community care that leaves space for learning and growing together. As a team, we have started to create a new strategic plan to guide our mission of seeing community members most excluded from traditional decision-making shape budgets, policies, and decisions that impact their lives. We welcomed new staff and partnerships. We took moments to pause, slow down, and reflect. We have acknowledged and learned from mistakes, while still taking time to dream big and be ambitious.
For us, reckoning with hard truths has meant embarking on a journey of interrogating white supremacy culture, including where and how it shows up in our organization. In an effort to eradicate these characteristics from our practices, we’ve taken a critical eye to our internal structure and operations. We’ve taken note of how systems of oppression are detrimental to our individual and collective growth, hinder our community from thriving, and prevent safety and a sense of belonging. We are committed to ensuring that every aspect of our organization mirrors our vision and values. And we will continue to work toward this goal and evolve as we learn lessons along the way.
As the PBP team prepares for the release of our new strategic plan in 2022, centering equity, transparency and transformation have been our guides. At the heart of every project we undertake is the desire to center equity, collaboration, and accessibility in expanding participatory democracy. Over the past year, as a community of advocates, we have:
- Continued to acquire community control over budgets, affirming that carceral systems do not provide the safety that investing in care and access to life-affirming resources does.
- Sought to hold ourselves accountable as an institution with privilege, to invest more of our philanthropic resources into local leaders seeking to create local change.
- Invited new allies into our work through co-creating new resources to help make participatory democratic practices easier and more equitable.
- Launched a national coalition-led campaign to ensure American Rescue Plan Act funds are allotted by community members most in need of COVID recovery support.
One thing we have learned over the last year is that anticipating what is next can be hard, but it is a necessary step in building road maps and action plans toward a future that is just, equitable and accessible for us all. Now is the time for us all to work together to determine how we move forward and invest in what we want to build together, whether through partnership, power-building, or collective decision-making.
We hope that you will join on as we build together to shape our future. We look forward to working alongside partners like you to strengthen participatory democracy and people’s power to make decisions on that which affects their lives the most.
Thank you for investing in the possibility of what’s next!
Kristina Banks, Kristania De Leon, Shari Davis
Participatory Budgeting Project
As we look ahead , we are excited to co-build the next iteration of our work. Here’s how we are investing in what’s next with our partners:
New strategic vision with an equity lens
Participatory pilots that will transform how governments work
New models of shared leadership
More PB and community decision-making at the local, state, and federal level
Thank you to our partners
This work is made possible through deep and meaningful partnerships from organizations and individuals from around the country. Thank you for dreaming, ideating, and building together.
January 1, 2021-December 31, 2021 (unaudited financials)