A family foundation that tracks philanthropy, the Masto Foundation, says only two cents of LGBTQ-generated funding goes to LGBTQ organizations.
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That has spurred donors to form giving circles of like-minded individuals who identify groups that need financial support.
API Equality Northern California, for example, focuses on leadership training, mental health services, trauma counseling and other needs.
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One small-donor group, Beyond Two Cents LGBTQ AAPI Giving Circle, has donated $80,000 to 20 organizations in the past three years with only eight members.
The hope is that foundations will take notice where there is grassroots support and provide larger grants.