California Criminal Justice Funders Group
We envision a world rooted in racial, economic, and gender justice, where communities have access to the resources they need for health, safety, and self-determination without relying on criminalization or punishment. We believe philanthropy has an important role to play in making this vision a reality. We aim to transform the culture of philanthropy and funding in the criminal justice reform sector by fostering collaboration and solidarity among funders, and with impacted communities through long-term investments in grassroots organizations led by people of color and communities most impacted by incarceration, as well as principled allied organizations. We envision a funding community that stands in solidarity with the movements to end policing, criminalization, and imprisonment and that mobilizes and redistributes resources to see a more just, equitable and humane world.
Founded in 2014, the California Criminal Justice Funders Group (CCJFG) is an established network of funders and donors that invest in a wide range of systems change. CCJFG engages funders from their current location and perspective and supports them to transform learning into collective action; develop principles that align with the movements to end policing, criminalization, imprisonment and the disinvestment of communities in California; build meaningful relationships with impacted communities; and mobilize and redistribute resources. As an active learning community, CCJFG regularly hosts educational events, prison visits, publishes a newsletter, and more. The CCJFG is guided by coordinator Adrienne Skye Roberts, and an active Steering Committee.
Values & Commitments
CCJFG’s Steering Committee recently engaged in a process to identify values and commitments to guide our work. We invite CCJFG members to review the following values, and the commitments they represent, and join us in embodying and striving towards these values from whatever current location and perspective you may hold. Our key values and commitments are: 1) Anti-Oppression & Abolition 2) Centering Directly-Impacted People 3) Learning with Humility 4) Collaboration, Engagement & Action. Read the Full Values >
CCJFG Membership Meetings are structured, yet informal spaces for California criminal justice funders to learn, collaborate and get organized together. The specific content of this meeting is TBD and will be updated as the date approaches.
This two-part member meeting series will address how funders can sustain long-term statewide pol
This two-part member meeting series will address how funders can sustain long-term statewide policy work, while being accountable to local grassroots movements.
Interview with Janetta Johnson, Executive Director
Interview with Eddy Zheng, President and Founder
CCJFG Steering Committee members are excited to share the following books and podcasts that have accompanied us as we settle into Spring 2021. The content ranges from writings on indigenous forms of justice and healing to a podcast tracing the connections between hip-hop and mass incarceration to a mixed media collection of responses to the question, what does it mean to be Black and alive? These stories are rigorous, compelling, and bring us closer to understanding the intersections of history, justice work, and future-making.
An interview with Somdeng Danny Thongsy, JRC Campaigner and Coordinator.
Interview with maisha quint, Senior Program Officer
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people in prison cannot be understated. As rates of infection rose inside prisons throughout the state, we witnessed our movement partners quickly and efficiently organize in response to this crisis. We witnessed the same tenacity and steadfastness this summer, as organizers led uprisings worldwide to protest racist state violence after the killing of George Flyod, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and countless others—violence that is all too familiar for incarcerated people and their families.
California Criminal Justice Funders Group is honored to welcome our newest Steering Committee member: Karren A. Lane, Director of the Youth Organizing Capacity Building Initiative from the Weingart Foundation. We are grateful for her experience and wisdom. Learn more about Karren below!
Interview with Jasjit Singh, Program Officer
California Criminal Justice Funders Group is honored to welcome our newest Steering Committee members: Sergio Cuellar, Roger Perez, and Jasjit Singh. We are grateful for their experience and guidance in our work. Learn more about their work and lives below.
On December 6, 2019, members of the California Criminal Justice Funders Group spent the day building connections with women and transgender people incarcerated in the state’s oldest women’s prison, the California Institution for Women (CIW), as well as women recently released from CIW.
The California Criminal Justice Funders Group (CCJFG) is pleased to share our first-of-its-kind report “Funding the Future: Fellowships for Formerly-Incarcerated People in California.”The report provides: a background on the project’s origins; an overview of the need for and value of fellowships for formerly-incarcerated people; discussion of research methodology and report terminology; a synthesis of the research findings; and key recommendations. This, first-of-its-kind research backing the report, was conducted in the fall of 2018. The data gathered through the research is intended to inform and engage funders about the diversity of fellowship opportunities throughout the state, the immense value of fellowships for formerly-incarcerated individuals, and how fellowships benefit California’s criminal justice reform movement.
The report provides a consolidated list of 38 existing, proposed, and aspirational fellowship programs. The research findings illustrate the importance of centering the leadership of formerly-incarcerated people, as well as the need for well-designed fellowships, as an integral part of advancing the movements for social and criminal justice reform.
The CCJFG hopes that the report will inspire our members and other funders to strategically invest in efforts to support and elevate the leadership of formerly-incarcerated people through paid fellowships, both within the criminal justice reform movement as well as in other social justice sectors in California.
Learn about the Sister Warrior Freedom campaign launch in March, the Drop LWOP (Life Without Parole) Spring Rally at the Capitol, and the new Alternative to Incarceration workgroup that appeared before the LA County Board of Supervisors.
Get current information on California Freedom Campaigns, COVID-19 Decarcerate Syllabus, and the impact COVID-19 is having on prisons.
Find up-to-date information on 2020 criminal justice reform legislation including the California Racial Justice Act and the Family Over Fees Act. You'll also find a breakdown of 2020 ballot measures including cash bail and California voting rights restoration.
Policy and legislative updates from the CCJFG December Newsletter.
Reports from the field in the CCJFG December Newsletter.
Resources from the CCJFG December Newsletter.
Policy and legislative updates from the CCJFG August Newsletter.
Resources on commutations and AB 2845 from the CCJFG August Newsletter.
We welcome all funders involved in supporting criminal justice reform in California (as staff from foundations, individual donors, donor-advised funds, etc.) to sign up for the CCJFG mailing list.
For questions and more information to become a member, please contact: Adrienne Skye Roberts, CCJFG Coordinator at CaCriminalJusticeFunders@ncg.org.
- Anuja Mendiratta, Co-Founder, CCJFG & Senior Philanthropic Advisor, Race, Gender, and Human Rights Fund
- Iris Garcia, Co-Chair, Akonadi Foundation
- Gina Peralta, Co-Chair, Heising-Simons Foundation
- Karren Lane, California Wellness Foundation
- Sergio Cuellar, Sierra Health Foundation
- William Ing, The California Endowment
- Roger Perez, Roy and Patricia Disney Family Foundation
- maisha quint, The Libra Foundation
- Jasjit Singh, California ChangeLawyers