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Walmart donates $14M to nonprofits targeting racial inequity as part of 5-year plan

16 organizations will recieve the funds over the next five years

Walmart on Monday announced it is distributing $14.3 million in grants to more than a dozen nonprofit organizations addressing racial disparities nationwide.

The funds are part of a larger commitment by Walmart and the Walmart Foundation to donate $100 million through grants over five years through a Center for Racial Equity in an effort to advance racial equity.

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In June, the retail behemoth announced its multimillion-dollar commitment amid ongoing nationwide demonstrations calling for racial justice and ending police brutality.

“Walmart has made a commitment to advancing racial equity, finding areas where we, as a company, can best contribute our resources and expertise to change society’s systems that perpetuate racism and discrimination,” Kirstie Sims, senior director of the Walmart.org Center for Racial Equity, said in a statement on Monday.

A woman wearing a facemask walks past a sign informing customers that face coverings are required in front of a Walmart store in Washington, DC on July 15, 2020. (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images)

The Arkansas-based company's goal is to advance racial equity within the nation's financial, health, criminal justice and education systems.

This includes allocating funds to Atlanta- and Chicago-based organizations focused on increasing access to affordable and healthy food in communities of color and The King Center, which "prepares global citizens to create a more just, humane, peaceful and equitable world using" King’s nonviolent philosophy and methodology, according to Walmart.

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PolicyLink, a national research and action institute advancing racial and economic equity, will also get hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants from the retailer. Walmart said the money will "support the launch of the Racial Equity through Corporate Actions Initiative, which will drive the creation and adoption of corporate standards on racial equity that will be freely available to companies."

The news of the $14.3 million effort comes just after the retailer encouraged its employees and customers to "honor the life and legacy of Dr. King" by donating to the company's online Day of Giving matching campaign, which was held on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

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The online giving campaign, which supported the Walmart Spark Fund for Charities at Charities Aid Foundation of America, was also part of the company's larger efforts toward addressing "the drivers of systemic racism in society and accelerate change," Ben Hasan, Walmart's chief global culture, diversity, equity and inclusion officer said.

Since June, the company has been launching programs internally and externally to enhance its goal including releasing its first Culture, Diversity and Inclusion midyear report.