Hope in Action Fund

The Hope in Action Fund was established in conjunction with East Tennessee Foundation's Annual Meeting in January 2019. After a surge in hate crimes across our region and nation, the Foundation established this new fund to support programs that nurture hope and equality in our culture. In 2020 and 2021, ETF activated this fund to competitively award grants to nonprofit organizations addressing racism and injustice in our community.

Since its inception, the Hope in Action Fund has awarded $185,000 in grants to many regional organizations. Grants have supported innovative solutions that dismantle racism, oppression, and injustice and provide a region where we can grow a more just, equitable, and inclusive future. Funded projects include collaborations among partners with diverse backgrounds and perspectives, projects that promote constructive dialogue, programs that provide space for individuals to thrive, learn, and grow, education and arts programs, or programs working toward systemic change in one or more communities within our region.

Click on the links below to learn more about these Hope in Action Fund supported organizations.

Application Process

The application process for 2021 has closed. Grants were awarded in August 2021 for one-year terms and ranged from $2,500 - $12,500.

Details about the next application process and grant cycle have not yet been determined. Please contact one of the individuals below for more information about future grantmaking.

To Support the Hope in Action Fund

Please consider donating to this Fund to help serve organizations working in our region to dismantle racism, oppression, and injustice, allowing the Foundation to make well-placed and wise grants. Click here to donate online, recommend a grant from your ETF donor advised fund, or write a check payable to East Tennessee Foundation with "Hope in Action" in the memo line and mail to:
East Tennessee Foundation
520 W. Summit Hill Drive, Suite 1101
Knoxville, TN 37902

Additional Information

For questions about the Hope in Action Fund, please contact:
Ashley Siferd Butler, Program Officer, abutler@etf.org
Jessica Renfro, Director of Operations, jrenfro@etf.org
Jan Elston, Vice President for Competitive Grant Programs, jelston@etf.org
Telephone: (865) 524-1223 or Toll-Free (877) 524-1223

Thank you for your interest in the Hope in Action Fund.