As-salamu alaykum, from Hassan Hassan. On this episode of the Bored of Ed, we’re introduced to the CEO of 4.0 Schools, a national venture with a focus on “community-centered innovation, rooted in equity without limits”.
Hassan’s role regularly brings him to rooms with philanthropists and funders who typically don’t look like him. As a Sudanese American, he brings layers of diversity from his background and experiences to his education and dedication to funding BIPOC innovators.
“The guiding belief that we have is that all people are capable of envisioning a positive future for themselves. And they know better than anyone, what they want to pursue.”
Since before the pandemic, 4.0 has stepped in where resources fall short or are completely unavailable, to bridge the gap of systematic inequities that have separated communities from true, realized freedom. That veteran teacher who has a heart for her learners and families and found a way to serve them? She can tap into 4.0’s resources. That dad who wants to build a homeschool collective so his children can learn, unchained to a desk – 4.0 stands with him too. 4.0 believes in the power of meaningful relationships and pouring resources into our innovative relatives, friends, and neighbors – “for me, that’s where I see the biggest opportunity”.
As Jonathan points out, speaking with Hassan about philanthropy may seem off-track, but every Bored Member we’ve spoken to, from Anashay “Teach Em” Wright to Mr. Angelo Garcia, needed funding to set the wheels in motion and turn their dream into a reality. When philanthropists take the time to connect with innovators on a human-to-human level, they get a glimpse at programs, systems, and businesses that go beyond generating revenue. There’s so much more than financial gain at stake.
We don’t do this for free. We do this for freedom.
Hassan pursues an era of independence – and that comes when we fund ourselves. His brainchild, The Angel Syndicate, brought 50 BIPOC innovators together, each placing $1,000 dollars on the table to invest back into our communities.
A big part of the success with The Angel Syndicate is the acknowledgment of each person’s role. As Hassan explains, the solution is simple: “if you’re the funder, your role is to give money, it’s literally your only job… and if you’re the project leader, you’re actually the one doing the work.” Hassan and The Angels don’t micromanage recipients; they trust and believe in the passion behind each project and fuel it with the power of money. That position takes respect, open communication, and humility.
We thank you, Hassan for reminding us of this simple truth.
If you’re ready to take on a “posture of humility”, then tune in to Season 2 Episode 5 with Hassan Hassan.
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