Be Nimble Foundation has received a $300,000 grant from Microsoft to launch an upskilling program for Black tech professionals, according to a press release.
The foundation is an Indianapolis-based social enterprise helping to build inclusive tech ecosystems. Microsoft awarded Be Nimble Foundation the grant as part of its community skills program, a commitment it made to invest $15 million over three years into 50 nonprofits working to increase skill development and economic opportunities. The program has a focus on accelerating Black-led nonprofits providing digital skills and workforce development to Black communities, a press release states.
“Last June, our CEO Satya Nadella committed Microsoft to put its data, technology, and partnerships to work to help improve the lives of Black and African American people across the country,” said Kate Behncken, VP and lead of Microsoft Philanthropies, in a statement. “We’re proud to partner with Be Nimble Foundation, led by and serving Black and African American people, which is providing access to the digital skills needed for so many jobs today. We’re inspired by their work, and excited we can be a part of it.”
Jeff Williams and and Kelli Jones co-founded Be Nimble Foundation in 2017 to help close the economic wealth gap and create generational wealth in the Black community, Jones shared in a statement. The organization plans to use the grant to host a variety of bootcamps focused on UX/UI design and development, tech sales and customer success. Be Nimble Foundation is partnering with nonprofit code academy and bootcamp Eleven Fifty and free skills training program gener8tor Upskilling to put on some of the programming.
“Access to capital, opportunity, and resources must be more equitable, and this grant from Microsoft will allow us to continue our work toward dismantling the historically high barrier to entry into tech careers and entrepreneurship,” Jones said in a statement.
Be Nimble Foundation will begin accepting applications for its inaugural sales cohort in April, with another five cohorts planned to take part in the program through 2023.