Minnesota BIPOC Nonprofits Index

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Independent nonprofit organizations primarily serving Black individuals, Indigenous individuals, and/or People of Color (BIPOC) are essential community resources that engage in a full spectrum of mutual assistance, ranging from advocacy and self-determination to leadership development, community enterprise, service delivery, and arts and culture. These organizations have an important role giving voice and agency to those most impacted by systemic racism. Raising public awareness of and investments in these groups is an important strategy to end racial injustice and address systemic inequities in the access to and distribution of resources, leadership positions, and decision-making.

Public officials, donors, other organizations and the general public increasingly want to hear directly from and find ways to connect with and support BIPOC led and/or serving nonprofits. This increased importance naturally leads to a desire to learn more about the status of BIPOC organizations’ activities, goals, locations, finances, growth, contacts, longevity, and accomplishments. To address this interest, MCN has worked in partnership with organizations and sector leaders who identify as, or primarily serving BIPOC communities, to generate the core of a new platform called the BIPOC Nonprofits Index, a compilation of public information on hundreds of nonprofit organizations and informal groups whose primary mission is serving or advocating for BIPOC communities in Minnesota. This index intended to be a resource for community members, foundations, policymakers, government agencies, donors, and nonprofits looking to partner with, invest in, and amplify the work of BIPOC led and/or serving nonprofits.

As of August 2022, there are 541 organizations featured in the BIPOC Nonprofits Index, including: organizational name, website, mailing address, founding year, financial information, primary activity area (publicly available information taken from IRS 990 filings), and MN house and senate state representatives names, political affiliation, and districts.* Recognizing that the term “BIPOC” is not a monolith, the Index also disaggregates by primary racial/ethnic community.**

  Primary CommunitiesCount of Nonprofits Serving Primary Communities
African/East African/West African111
Asian/Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders113
Black/African American56
Middle Eastern Heritage2
Multi-Racial or Multi-Ethnic79
Native American/American Indian/Indigenous99
TOTAL  533

What the Index is not:

  • A complete census: The Index is a starting point that is continually enriched by ongoing research and community input.
  • A directory: While some public contact information is available (such as mailing addresses), MCN does not share names of individuals or email addresses in accordance with our privacy policy.
  • A “Meets Standards” list: The Index is a compilation of groups whose primary mission/purpose is to serve specific BIPOC communities in MN. MCN does not review or rate organizations.

The nonprofit sector is dynamic and ever evolving. If you have edits or additions (based on the criteria for inclusion described below) or feedback for MCN to consider regarding the Index, please contact info@minnesotanonprofits.org. MCN will make regular updates to the Index.This work is grounded in MCN’s strategic priority to advance equity and justice, which acknowledges: The greatest disparities are linked to race, building relationships are crucial to addressing disparities through a community-centered approach, and creating an environment that can be accessed, understood, and used to the greatest extent possible by all people ultimately benefits everyone.


Primary Criteria for Inclusion

In consultation with BIPOC led and/or serving nonprofits and community partners, the following criteria of inclusion was developed and is used in building the BIPOC Nonprofits Index:

Who does the organization serve? 

  • Intent to represent specific community defined by race/ethnicity
    • What’s their mission/intent? 
    • What’s their name?
    • Founding history?
    • Have they received grants designated toward a specific community?

Additional Considerations

Who serves in managing roles? (executive leadership and management)

  • Local knowledge
  • Self-reporting
  • Publicly available demographic data (ie. GuideStar)

Who serves in governing roles? (board of directors)

  • Local knowledge
  • Self-reporting
  • Publicly available demographic data (ie. GuideStar)

*Financial information and corresponding fiscal year, founding year, and primary activity areas were taken from the publicly available IRS Exempt Organization Business Masterfile. For a complete list of all tax exempt entities in Minnesota, visit www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/exempt-organizations-business-master-file-extract-eo-bmf and click on the state of Minnesota to download. Websites were taken from 990 information, publicly available through www.open990.org

**The Index disaggregates BIPOC led and/or serving nonprofits by specific racial/ethnic communities. MCN’s intent is to provide a baseline resource as a first step toward disaggregated data, and that individuals would use this resource to do further disaggregation as needed for their work. The categories for racial/ethnic communities used in the Index were developed by Candid’s GuideStar, with two changes: The Index  1. further disaggregates “Black/African Americans” and “African/East African/West African”  2. includes a “Middle Eastern Heritage” category. Full categories include:

  • African/East African/West African
  • Black/African Americans
  • Asian/Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders
  • Hispanic/Latino/Latina/Latinx
  • Middle Eastern Heritage
  • Multi-Racial or Multi-Ethnic
  • Native American/American Indian/Indigenous
  • White/Caucasian/European

Ideas for Use of the Index

The purpose of this resource is not data collection but insight, and its value is demonstrated when it is both used and useful. The Index has been available for a mere two months, and already in that time it has been well-received and used. The following are a selection of responses from those who have recently downloaded the Index, answering: “Please share why you’re interested in the MN BIPOC Nonprofits Index”

  • “To identify BIPOC democracy partners to reach out to and see how we can plan for long-term organizing efforts to educate BIPOC voters on how to navigate spaces of power and effectively engage elected officals/decisionmakers.”
  • “Researching potential nonprofits to donate to”
  • “Our organization is working to identify key culturally diverse networks of institutions, groups, and individuals and their engagement in parks and trails in Minnesota.”
  • “Working on stronger outreach when promoting open positions.”
  • “I am a BIPOC college student looking for a nonprofit to work for this summer.”

Possible Uses

  • Disaggregated research on the role and contributions of specific BIPOC communities
  • Track overall activity for social justice advocacy
  • Promote resource contributions
  • Identify service and coalition opportunities
  • Facilitate connections and communications among organizations
  • Build visibility for media, public policy  and corporate influence 
  • Increase public understanding and support for nonprofit organizations or informal groups whose primary activity is serving or advocating for BIPOC communities in Minnesota

Resources for Understanding Trends Impacting Specific BIPOC Communities