Anonymous donor makes six-figure contribution to Louisville non-profit

Though they didn't want to be publicly identified, the donor says that they hope the gift will help to right historic wrongs

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The founders of the Louisville non-profit Change Today, Change Tomorrow received a gift from an unexpected anonymous source to help them continue their work helping marginalized communities in the state.

Deputy director Nannie Grace Croney told NPR the organization received a six-figure “reparations payment” from a 25-year-old who inherited wealth, but found out that their family had owned slaves. The donor asked to remain anonymous.

“They investigated their family history to find out their great-grandfather had enslaved six individuals in Bourbon [County], Ky.,” Croney said.

Once the donor found out that their ancestors had not even recorded the names of the six people they’d enslaved, the donor came to believe that giving away the money would be best.

In a statement, the donor said that although there was no true compensation for slavery they hoped that the money might serve some good.

“He inflicted the trauma and violence of slavery on six people for his own monetary gain and did not even bother to record their names. Although no amount of money could ever right that wrong, their descendants deserve repayment for what was taken,” the donor said.

(Change Today Change Tomorrow)

Change Today Change Tomorrow founder Taylor Ryan echoed that sentiment and asked for more support from local groups.

“It is a blessing for us, but also definitely owed.” 

The non-profit began as a way to ensure that teachers had the necessary school supplies, but has grown into a full-service organization that provides student with meals, facilitates food deliveries from a Black-owned farm, and provides public health assistance, per NPR.

“We predominantly serve the west end of Louisville, which is a predominantly Black, low-income area,” Andreana Bridges, who works at Change Today, Change Tomorrow, told NPR.

Interestingly enough the donor has never lived in Kentucky and told the organization they had simply looked for suitable places to donate to on the internet.

“As white people we all unfairly benefit from racism,” the anonymous donor said in their statement. “We have to be willing to part with what was stolen, and do so without expectations of praise or control over how the money will be spent.”

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