Brooklyn Facts


Brooklyn is the 3rd Largest "City" in America—Larger than Boston, Atlanta, Washington DC & Minneapolis Combined
With nearly 2,736,074 residents living across 70 neighborhoods, Brooklyn is New York City's most populous and fastest growing borough. Brooklyn had the largest population gain of all NYC boroughs from Census 2010 to 2020 (9.2%), and is just short of its record population reached in 1950.

Brooklyn is Home to the 2nd Largest Black Population of Any City in North America
Nearly 730,000 Black people live in Brooklyn—second only to Chicago—and larger than Atlanta and Detroit’s Black population combined. However, Brooklyn’s Black population decreased by 8.7% from 2010 to 2020.

Over 1/3 of Residents were Born in Another Country
Approximately 112,636 Brooklyn residents are undocumented.

Brooklyn is Home to Speakers of over 200 Languages.
Nearly 50% of all households speak a language other than English at home.

Nearly 1 in 5 Brooklyn Residents Lives in Poverty
Brooklyn ranks first in New York City in total number of children living in poverty.

Brooklyn Has the Most Units of Public Housing in New York City
There are 85 NYCHA developments with 54,355 apartments in Brooklyn. Brownsville has the highest concentration of public housing in the nation.

Nearly 30% of Renters Spend More than Half of Their Income on Rent
Brooklyn is home to the highest number of New Yorkers experiencing food insecurity.

1 in 5 Residents over 25 Does Not Have a High School Diploma
37.5% of residents over 25 have a Bachelor's degree or higher.

Nearly 30% of individuals in the NYC shelter system come from Brooklyn.
Brooklynites make up the 2nd highest percentage of individuals in the shelter system, second to individuals from The Bronx.


Brooklyn Has the Longest-Standing Public Library System in All of New York City
Home to 59 libraries, The Brooklyn Public Library system was founded in 1892, before The New York Public Library (1895) and The Queens Public Library (1896).

Brooklyn had the 2nd-largest free Black community in pre-Civil War America
Weeksville—located in the present-day neighborhoods of Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant—was an independent free Black community established by James Weeks in 1838.

Brooklyn has the Oldest Performing Arts Center in the Nation
The Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) was founded in 1861.

New York State’s First Black Woman Physician was a Brooklynite
Born in Weeksville, Dr. Susan Smith McKinney-Steward became the first Black woman to ever earn a medical degree in New York State—and the third in the entire nation—when she graduated in 1870.

Brooklyn is Home to the First Children's Museum in the United States
The Brooklyn Children's Museum was established in 1899.

Brooklyn Claims New York City’s First Designated Historic District
The Brooklyn Heights neighborhood was landmarked by the City in 1965.

The Nation’s First Black Congresswoman Was a Brooklynite
Bedford-Stuyvesant’s Shirley Chisholm was elected to the House of Representatives in 1968.

Brooklyn’s Inventions Have Had a Global Impact
Credit Cards, Air Conditioners, Teddy Bears, and Roller Coasters are just a few of the notable inventions to come out of the borough and spread worldwide.


Only 7.6% of NYC's Philanthropic Dollars Goes to Brooklyn
While Brooklyn is home to the second-greatest number of nonprofits in New York City (over 13,000), organizations in Brooklyn only receive 7.6% of all philanthropic giving in the five boroughs. In comparison, Manhattan-based organizations receive a staggering 10 times that figure, 76% of giving across New York CIty.

U.S. foundations’ Annual Funding Focused on Communities of Color ≤ 8.5%
From 2005-2014, total giving by foundations in the United States that was focused on reaching people of color never exceeded 8.5% for any year⁠—and only 1% of those grants were specifically for racial justice.

Black-led Organizations Face Higher Barriers to Accessing Capital than White-led Organizations
Revenues of Black-led organizations are 24% less than white-led counterparts, and unrestricted net assets of Black-led organizations are 76% lower than white-led organizations, according to a recent study.

Philanthropic Spending on Latinx Issues is Disproportionately Low Compared to the Latinx Population in the U.S.
Even as the Latinx population in the United States has risen over the past decade to 18%, the share of philanthropic dollars going to Latinx issues has remained at about 1%, according to a study by Candid.