Last week, we published a letter to our community including a list of actions Stem would be taking to help play our part in fighting anti-Blackness and racial injustice in the US. As a part of that, we committed to building giving directly into Stem’s product.
We had chosen certain funds in our initial letter, but following signals from specific organizations about their needs for donations, we removed some and added others. Our goal is to ensure all funds donated by Stem users are allocated towards organizations who are actively in need.
As of today, all future Stem releases are able to allocate a percentage of revenue to the following organizations: Black Lives Matter [Global], The Bail Project, CURB Prison Spending, The Loveland Foundation, The Okra Project, and The Southern Poverty Law Center. If you choose to allocate 100% of your Sound Recording earnings from a release to one of these organizations, Stem will waive our distribution fee for that content.
Below we have outlined some more information about each organization, and how you can give back directly through Stem.
#BlackLivesMatter was founded in 2013 following the acquittal of George Zimmerman, the man who murdered Trayvon Martin. Founded by Patrisse Khan-Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi, BLM Global supports local chapters in organizing to fight for racial justice, provide resources to the Black community, and mobilize voters. BLM Global creates campaigns, petitions, and supports grassroots efforts to fight for systemic change.
Working in multiple cities across the nation, the Bail Project combats mass incarceration through direct action. By paying the bail of individuals who are unable to, The Bail Project combats racial inequity and the criminalization of poverty. To date, they have paid bail for over 10,000 people. In the US, bail is returned at the end of a case, meaning all donations funnel back into their system, and can be reused two to three times a year. 100% of the donations made online, including forthcoming donations from Stem users, go towards the revolving bail fund, focused on reuniting families and bringing people home.
CURB, also known as Californians United for a Responsible Budget, is a coalition of 70 grassroots organizations, who together have goals to end mass incarceration. By reducing prison populations, advocating for public budgets to be moved from incarceration to human services, and by shrinking the imprisonment system, CURB helps expand the reach of organizers across the state. Since being founded in Oakland in 2003, CURB has defeated 140,000 new prison beds.
The Loveland Foundation provides an essential resource to Black women and girls across the US – access to mental health services. Established by activist Rachel Cargle in 2018 after a successful social media fundraiser, the Loveland Foundation has spent the last two years providing funds to support therapy costs nationwide, contributing to the healing of communities of color. They also provide fellowships, residencies, and listening tours to empower Black women and girls.
The Black Transgender community is one of the most vunerable populations in the US. The Okra Project, by providing healthy, home-cooked meals and other resources to Black Trans people, addresses the global food crisis marginalized individuals face today. Their programming supports Black diasporic cooking traditions, creating a thoughtful and community-oriented solution to those experiencing food insecurity. Their programs have also expanded with the creation of an International Grocery Fund and an academy to teach kitchen skills and recipes to Black Trans people.
Based in Montgomery, the Southern Poverty Law Center uses litigation, advocacy and education to combat hate and bigotry. SPLC was founded by two civil rights lawyers, Morris Dees and Joseph Levin Jr. , in 1971 with the goal to ensure that everyone was granted civil rights. They focus their litigation efforts on victims of discrimation, including immigrants, incarcerated people, and the LGBTQIA+ community. Beyond their legal efforts, they maintain the Civil Rights Memorial Center in Montgomery, track and expose hate groups, and distribute free materials to reduce prejudice in schools across the nation through education.
Implementing Shareholder Giving
Here are the shareholder emails for each organization which can be added directly into the Sound Record splits on your release(s).
Once you’ve added an associated shareholder account to your Sound Recording splits, choose a percentage between 1-100% of your earnings to allocate. Each month, Stem will automatically donate directly to the outlined organizations.
Any Stem user can change their splits at any time, if you would like to donate only for an allocated period of time rather than indefinitely. Check out this FAQ on how to change your splits with the help of your Stem Direct Rep.