A Brave Space for Black Fundraisers


November 16th -17th
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Proudly sponsored by

What Is A Brave Space for Black Fundraisers Virtual Conference?

“I don’t want to make somebody else, I want to make myself.” ~ Toni Morrison

It’s clear there is an emerging and growing resistance and backlash against the pursuit of equity and racial justice within the charitable sector. As voices of dissent amplify, there are vested defenders who not only deny and refuse to acknowledge the colonial roots and its embedded ‘whiteness’ standard, but who are intent on holding the line on the status quo designed to preserve how things have always been done.

Black folx, and those with marginalized ‘othered’ identities, have been excluded from full contribution and participation in the sector unless they conform and contort themselves in ways to fit it.  And even when they do, their identities are asterisked to indicate conditional acceptance.


A Brave Space for Black Fundraisers’ Virtual Conference offers an environment:

  • that centres Black experiences without the gaze of ‘whiteness’;
  • that welcomes your ‘whole’ self and the expressions of intersecting Black identities;
  • where living experiences enrich and foster a generative space
  • that challenges, encourages pushing beyond fear, and nurtures courage, compassion;
  • that you enter and feel you belong.

Why did we create this event?

We saw a need to validate and anchor the Black experience within a system designed to exclude and devalue our contributions as Black people to the sector.

A Brave Space for Black Fundraisers’ Virtual Conference will help Black fundraisers chart a personal journey and road map as they navigate a path that leads to our collective liberation and destination - racial justice within and outside of the sector. Our convening as Black people is critical as we reimagine and strive together to combat continued challenges and attempts to subvert our efforts to create and cultivate just spaces, communities and societies where systems and structures uphold equity and justice and where freedom from all forms of oppression ultimately prevails.
The 2-day program demonstrates and advocates a different path to the way we can learn, act and move forward together. We can do this creatively. We believe that learning is both an individual and a collective experience. Therefore, we will embark on a learning experience by first examining and sharing our stories so that we can begin to see how our experiences are linked. The various cultural wisdom that the event organizers pour into this learning experience will create for attendees a rich and intersectional experience that encourages and calls for your presence, active contribution, engagement and participation. We want you to bring your ways of knowing and not knowing into this shared space.

Who should Attend?

Black fundraisers seeking an affirming environment that celebrates all of you - where your voice and identities can fill the space and where centering and contributing your lived-experience is valued currency.

Join us if you'd like to:

  • explore, grow, learn and enrich your journey by working with others as you move along a path that leads to racial equity and justice
  • align your actions, decisions and behaviours with your values
  • reflect and deepen your awareness of how racism impacts and affects how we show up in our relationships and in every area of our lives
  • anchor your personal and career development in ways that honour your lived-experience

We will walk the talk together, we will engage and move together, and we will bring fun to the space too!

Program Schedule
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Day 1: Introduction to Collecting Courage: A Path to Action Learning Journey

Thursday, November 16th, 2023

1pm -5pm ET (10am - 2pm PT)
A Path to Action: A Journey Towards Collecting Courage is a curriculum co-created by four leading and influential voices with deep experience in the Nonprofit Sector who came together to illuminate a practical path toward racial justice in the charitable sector.

We know based on the response to Collecting Courage Joy Pain Freedom Love that there is a desire to learn, grow and change in the face of white supremacy power dynamics and practices that is deeply embedded and upholds inequities and injustice in the charitable sector.

This learning guide is designed to respond to the question, “what now?” This journey is an individual exploration as well as a collective one. We believe there is a role for everyone to play and that transformation begins with the individual. We believe there is power in learning together. We know that social change is made possible through collective effort.

Day one will focus on reflection and self awareness.

Day 2: Anchored Development

Friday, November 17th, 2023

11am – 2:30pm ET (8am – 11:30am PT)

Day 2 of A Brave Space conference feels like the right time and place for Black fundraisers to delve into topics that are important to us and our community. 

Our careers in the fundraising space are a thorny subject as many of us have experienced ups and downs in trying to find roles that are aligned with our personal values. 

We’ve also been harmed by white supervisors and peers, but also by our Black colleagues, many of whom are also struggling to find their place in toxic work environments.  

We know that Black people are benevolent and concerned about the future of our loved ones and communities.  We often don’t have the knowledge or resources to know how we can leave a far-reaching legacy for those coming behind us.

Yes, this is the time. This is the place for knowledge and affirmation to anchor us in our development careers.  This day will be a day of reflection, grace, and resource sharing.  We will empower one another to lean in, make smart decisions, and navigate the workplace in fundraising.  This is our path to action and the start of our journey towards finding joy and reward in our lives and careers.


  • Align Not Hustle, Matching your values to your career
  • Hurt People Hurt People: How we support Black people in the Nonprofit workplace
  • Legacy Planning in the Black Community
Organizers & Speakers
Nicole Salmon
Co-Editor, Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love
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Shaped by her Jamaican identity and deeply influenced by spending 2/3 of her life in Canada, Nicole is a skilled communicator who embraces her natural curiosity and thirst for variety and new challenges. An avid reader, gardener, sports enthusiast and mentor, Nicole is anchored by family, committed to service, building connections and deepening personal relationships.

With thirty years working in the non-profit sector, Nicole is the Founder & Principal of Boundless Philanthropy, a consultancy providing a range of services, including interim leadership and decision-making support, fund development strategy and advisory services, staff mentorship, and a variety of Raiser’s Edge database supports.

Prior to the founding of her consultancy in 2014, she was the Director of Fund Development for a Canadian international development organization.

Nneka Allen
Co-Editor, Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love
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Nneka is a Black woman, a descendant of the Underground Railroad, her African ancestors had a historic relationship with the First Peoples of Canada and as result, the Cherokee and the Ojibwe are her relations. She is a 6th generation Canadian and a Momma.

Today, Nneka is a relationship builder, a stone-catcher, a freedom fighter and a storyteller. As a lover of justice, Nneka has inspired philanthropy as a Fundraising Executive in the charitable sector for over 20 years. As the Principal and Founder of The Empathy Agency Inc. she helps leaders and their teams deliver more fairly on their missions by coaching them to explore the impact identity has on culture and equity outcomes.

Camila Pereira
Co-Editor, Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love
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Born and raised in Brazil, Camila comes from a very mixed family including Black, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Native Indian. She understood from a very young age that race relations, identity and gender roles were central not only to her family but to herself and that skin color in Brazil dictates your role, future and existence within society.

Since childhood Camila has been involved in philanthropy through her family's community initiatives. Her career in the nonprofit sector is a means to contribute towards the eradication of all forms of prejudice preventing the advancement and betterment of humankind; she is a fundraising professional in Toronto
Christal M. Cherry
Contributor, Collecting Courage: Joy, Pain, Freedom, Love
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Christal M. Cherry, The Board Pro, worked 23 years as a nonprofit fundraiser serving higher education institutions, seminaries, and human service organizations. Now as a board consultant for nonprofits, she equips and empowers boards to support their missions and change the world. Her services as Principal and CEO of the Board Pro, include recruitment, governance, fundraising, conflict resolution and diversity, equity, inclusion, access and belonging.

Christal has enjoyed training and speaking engagements with Candid, Bloomerang, Network for Good, QGiv, Keela, Out in the Boons and Nonprofit Hub. She has also been a guest on several podcasts including We Are for Good, Nonprofit Nation, Nonprofit Lowdown, Nonprofit Coffee Talk, Nonprofit Vision, Nonprofit Jenni, Mission Impact, The Nonprofit Mastermind and Your Path to Nonprofit Leadership.

Christal earned an MA in Counseling from Hampton University, a BA in Liberal Arts from Hofstra University and professional development certifications in nonprofit leadership, social media fundraising, and nonprofit management. She recently earned certification as a Quadrant 3 Leadership Coach and as a Nonprofit Board Consultant with Board Source.

She is a contributing author to Collecting Courage, a collection of first-person narratives from Black fundraisers documenting their experiences with racism in the nonprofit sector. In 2021, Christal authored her first children’s book, Mac and Cheez, Being Different is Okay which is available on Amazon.

Got questions? We have answers. Email us at: info@collectingcourage.org