Flock DC is a real estate management company serving the District proper. We knew from the start that to take flight, we all need fuel. This core value is at the heart of Flock’s birdSEED philanthropic giving initiative. Good citizenship and bold contributions to community are part of our wingprint. Our giving began 12 years ago with our time. Indeed, it was all we had to spare. We helped build playgrounds, plant gardens, serve meals and sort clothing. We have (and still) wander the streets with trash bags and lend our spaces to those who have needed to gather, plot and plan for a better world. Later, we added a microgrant program designed to support the activists and entrepreneurs among us so ideas could soar. We’ve provided funds with few strings and an indifference to credentials and tax status. We leaned into the passion and grit our incredible applicants brought to the table.
We homed in on getting resources to people like us - District of Columbia change makers and risk takers - the doers, makers and disruptors among us. To date, Flock’s micro-grant program has funded big, bold ideas like large scale murals, veteran farmer supplies, funds for firefighters installing smoke detectors for seniors living east of the river and bicycle repair stations in underserved communities. We supported an organization that hosts birthday parties for homeless kids and another that teaches African American girls to code. And so much more. But still Not Enough. And so begins our work on housing justice and our latest, most ambitious steps to support home buying for our Black and Brown neighbors in the District. These are the seeds we’re planting today as part of a reparative move toward a more just future. We hope you join us. We have a lot of work to do.
Our downpayment assistance program is now closed. With $215,000 in seed funding, we’re looking forward to repairing an unjust past and providing support to first time homebuyers that have been historically excluded from the wealth generating acquisition of homes. Flock may not be responsible for the injustice of the past but we’re responsible for reimagining and investing in a more just and equitable future.
In June of 2021, we’ll open micro grant applications for doers, makers and disruptors in the District. The spirit of the funding is simple in nature. One-page applications will be accepted over a 30-day period and grants up to $2,500 will be offered for projects or programs that impact DC proper. We ask that projects can begin and end in a three month window. It is not required that applicants be part of or affiliated with a not for profit and businesses; artists, agitators, educators and more are encouraged to apply.
Need some wingpower for your program? We’re able to quickly convene and advance community change with our exceptionally dedicated team and network. We’ve opened our doors to Black Lives Matter activists on protest days, you can spot us on trash walks, hosting fundraisers for healthcare or tutoring underserved kids in the District and feeding frontline workers while supporting our restaurants.
If you have a need or idea, we want to hear it.
Reach out to [email protected] and let's talk!
The murder of George Floyd compelled Flock to study our privilege as a company. Presumably, our hard work and creativity anchored our success. But did it really?
In part, yes. But there is a harder truth to reconcile. And to be candid - that reconciliation will be out of reach until we, as a society, write a future that begins to undo the wrongs of the past when it comes to Black and Brown Americans. Our neighbors. YOUR neighbors.
Today, Flock's profits come from managing homes. But we cannot ignore the past. The real estate industry and its generation to generation wealth creation has been out of reach for many Black and Brown individuals. Redlining alone tells the story we have to study as a very real social, political and economic conspiracy to prevent (predominately) Black homeownership.
“Conspiracy,” however, implies that there was something to hide. In actuality, redlining and steering was very public. The overtly racist practices and policies that prevented the accumulation of wealth through home/property ownership disrupted any hope for parity or equality in real estate and home buying. And, by design, the acquisition of wealth generating assets like real property and the ability to pass them onto future generations was deliberately kept out of reach for those who didn’t look like me. Together, with the Greater Washington Community Foundation we're planting seeds for the equitable future we want to be part of.
That isn’t a story I want to be part of. So let’s start another narrative. Let’s repair the damages of the past. And let’s call it what it is: long overdue reparations.
In late fall of 2020, Flock’s birdSEED evolved into a foundation designed to offer home buying assistance to Black and Brown residents of the District of Columbia. Is this a financial windfall for many who have long sought home ownership? Not quite yet. Does it shift the conversation and invite those who have squarely benefited from an industry that excluded others to consider their responsibility? It should. My peers might say: “but I didn’t cause the problem!” To which I say: “Maybe not, but it’s your responsibility - it’s OUR responsibility to UNDO it.”
- Lisa Wise, Founder and Chief Flockster
To donate via ACH or wire transfer, please e-mail [email protected] for directions including routing and account information. Don't forget to include "birdSEED Foundation" in the memo line of your transfer!
We homed in on getting resources to people like us -District of Columbia change makers and risk takers, the doers, makers and disrupters among us. To date, our micro-grant program has funded big bold ideas.
1508 U St. NW