Tory Russell, the co-founder of the International Black Freedom Alliance, stood alongside Mike Brown Sr., whose son was killed by a police officer in 2014, in a video posted on Tuesday (March 2) to request that the Black Lives Matter organization provide $20 million to continue their work in Ferguson, Missouri.
According to a Twitter thread of the IBFA's page, Mike Brown's father "has received only $500 from any #BlackLivesMatteraffiliated group even though they organize an annual commemoration weekend for their son along with many other events with other families for healing and empowerment." Their message comes as it was revealed in a report from theGrio that the Black Lives Matter organization received $90 million in funding in light of the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and others.
BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors spoke about reinvesting the money, stating, "One of our biggest goals this year is taking the dollars we were able to raise in 2020 and building out the institution we’ve been trying to build for the last seven and a half years." After the news broke of BLM's funding, a Survival Fund for people to apply for 3,000 microgrants of $1K was launched, no strings attached. At least 300 people had been approved for grants as of last week.
Russell, Brown Sr. and others stated that they hope to use the $20 million for the Chosen For Change Foundation, the Mike Brown Community Center, organizing grants for Ferguson protests and activists, various programs and services in the Black community, and the annual Aug. 9 commemorations of Brown’s death.