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July 8, 2022: Bridging The Gap is proud to announce that thanks to our Program Director Kechia Smith’s leadership, we’ve been spotlighted by Justice40 as one of 49 community-based, climate-justice organizations nationally, who are applying local knowledge and wisdom to find solutions to the climate crisis. 

Anchored in love and service, the Justice40 Accelerator is a 12-month program that will provide BTG with seed funding, technical assistance, training, connections, and peer support as we seek federal funding flowing from the Biden Administration’s Justice40 Initiative. 

This initiative directs at minimum 40% of the benefits from federal investments in climate and clean energy solutions towards serving disadvantaged communities. We are honored to join 48 other community-rooted, climate justice groups in the 2022 Justice40 Accelerator cohort.

BTG will receive $25,000 in unrestricted grant money to support participation and project development during the cohort, as well as the following benefits:

  • One-on-one technical assistance 
  • Justice40 Navigator support 
  • Workshops on applying for government grants  
  • Peer-to-peer learning sessions
  • Informational sessions with government agency officials
  • Curated notices of funding opportunities 
  • Post-accelerator alumni network 

“Kechia is tireless in working towards environmental justice, and has strengthened BTG’s commitment to it through this new designation and in our everyday work,” said Kristin Riott, BTG’s executive director.

To remove barriers blocking access to federal funding informed by the Justice40 strategy, leading climate justice and community development nonprofits created the Justice40 Accelerator. Its 12-month program provides seed funding, technical assistance, training, connections, and peer support for community-anchored climate justice organizations seeking Justice40 Initiative funding. It is independent of the federal government and the Biden/Harris administration’s Justice40 Initiative. Partners are: 

  • Elevate, a national nonprofit that seeks to create a just and equitable world in which everyone has clean and affordable heat, power, and water in their homes and communities — no matter who they are or where they live. 
  • Groundswell, which builds community power by connecting clean energy projects with economic empowerment for local communities. Groundswell develops and manages community solar projects in five states and D.C., serving more than 4,100 income-qualified households with affordable clean power.
  • Partnership for Southern Equity, which advances policies and institutional actions that promote racial equity and shared prosperity for all in the growth of metropolitan Atlanta and the American South.
  • The Hummingbird Firm, a community-engagement consulting firm, specializing in face-to-face and digital public involvement, environmental communications, climate action, and cultural competency training. 
  • The Solutions Project, a national nonprofit that promotes climate justice through grantmaking and amplifying the stories of frontline community leaders in the media. TSP is accelerating the transition to 100% clean energy and equitable access to healthy air, water, and land by supporting climate justice organizations, especially those led by women of color.

The Justice40 Accelerator can serve as a model for philanthropy, state and local governments, and private capital, demonstrating how they can fund climate justice efforts that leverage the brilliance and resilience inherent in frontline communities to create lasting climate solutions. 

Learn more at