$1 Billion Raised for AAPI Same Day Anti-Asian Hate Crimes Act Signed

A philanthropic initiative called The Asian American Foundation (TAAF) raised over $1 billion for AAPI communities, the organization announced Thursday.

Historic achievement: TAAF was able to raise the money within two weeks, the organization shared in a statement.

  • TAAF made the commitment on May 3 to spend $250 million, focused on data and research, anti-hate and education, NextShark previously reported. 
  • “TAAF was founded to close critical gaps of support for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and end the longstanding underinvestment in our communities,” President of TAAF Sonal Shah said. “Today’s historic announcement should send a clear signal to the 23 million AAPIs living in this country that TAAF and our AAPI Giving Challenge partners are here to upend the status quo in favor of a better, brighter future for AAPI communities.”
  • Shah and the organization’s board members briefed White House administration officials on Thursday on how they planned to use the money that was raised, reported Hope King at Axios.
  • POTUS Biden and VP Harris came by the meeting to offer their support, and CNN host Lisa Ling and actor Daniel Dae Kim joined virtually among other members of TAAF’s advisory council.

Pathways to change: The news came just as Biden signed the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, which will accelerate the investigation of COVID-19-related hate crimes that have disproportionately affected the AAPI community, into law, NextShark previously reported.

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  • Ahead of the signing, Harris said the bill brings the nation “one step closer to stopping hate, not only for Asian Americans, but for all Americans.”
  • The $1 billion raised by TAAF will be used to continue to fund the organization’s three priority investments, including school curriculum that “reflect the history of Asian American and Pacific Islanders as part of the American story,” according to Fox News.
  • “The Asian American Foundation wants a future where all Asian American and Pacific Islanders are accepted, protected, and celebrated. TAAF invests in anti-hate, education, and data.  We incubate an anti-AAPI hate data group, and convene communities to build the infrastructure for influence and prosperity of AAPI communities in America,” according to the TAAF projects page.
  • Major corporations also pledged money to TAAF. FedEx pledged $2.5 million over five years and Amazon pledged $10 million.

The organization is also producing an MTV special for the AAPI community hosted by Ken Jeong called, “See Us Unite for Change — The Asian American Foundation in service of the AAPI Community” set to be broadcasted this evening at 8 p.m. EST. It will be on MTV, Comedy Central, VH1, BET, Nickelodeon and live-streamed on Facebook Watch.

Featured Image via Washington Post Live (left) and Jimmy Kimmel Live (right)

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