November 3, 2000


Joint Center Launches Alliance for Racial Healing

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies recently launched the Network of Alliances Bridging Race and Ethnicity (NABRE), a vehicle for assisting local leaders around the country in their efforts to overcome racial and ethnic divisions. A key component is the NABRE section on the Joint Center's website (www.jointcenter.org/nabre) which will maintain a membership directory, resource links, and other interactive features.

The NABRE is supported chiefly with a $900,000 three-year grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation — the first award the Joint Center has received from the foundation. Initial support for the planning of NABRE came from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation and it has also received support from DaimlerChrysler, the Ford Motor Company, the Joyce Foundation, the Kovler Foundation, and Mitsubishi Motors.

"We view the formation of NABRE as a natural outgrowth of the work done by President Clinton's White House Initiative on Race," said Eddie N. Williams, president and CEO of the Joint Center. "NABRE creates a diverse coalition of individuals and community initiatives around the country that previously often worked in isolation and with limited resources. Its interactive component also enables them to share information in a way that was not possible before."

NABRE (pronounced "neigh-bor) allows leaders of community-based racial reconciliation organizations to share "best practices" for confronting common challenges, to effectively measure their progress and gather information for long-term planning, to broaden the base of support for their communities' activities, and to recruit new leaders in communities throughout the country.

"The Knight Foundation's support of this project rests on the oldest of American realities and an enduring national necessity: in a nation of many creeds, races and ethnic backgrounds, tying its disparate strands together in shared community is vital to the nation's health," said Hodding Carter III, president and CEO of the Knight Foundation. "By networking the many organizations which work toward this end across the land, the Joint Center promises to advance the timeless goal of E Pluribus Unum."

In addition to its website, NABRE will convene regional workshops and forums, assist in the development of community-impact self-assessment tools, develop a database to link community-based programs with funding and training sources, and establish links with international racial equity leaders.

The Joint Center launched Youth NABRE, a companion program, in September to connect "Lucent Links" project participants around the country. It is supported with a grant from the Lucent Technologies Foundation. These initiatives underscore the Joint Center's expanding use of information technology in its programming.

Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2000, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation makes national grants in journalism, education and arts and culture. Its fourth program, community initiatives, is concentrated in 26 communities where the Knight brothers published newspapers, but the Foundation is wholly separate from and independent of those newspapers.

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