Equity in the Philanthropic Sector

FavoriteBy Emily Brenner, student assistant, Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy Here at LearnPhilanthropy, we provide a platform for sharing tools, knowledge, and guidance from the field for grantmaker learning. As the philanthropic sector has begun to more deeply understand the pervasive and systemic inequities in our society, more foundations and philanthropy serving organizations are bringing an equity lens to their work. Many foundations are focusing on how well their own structure, governance, and staffing contribute to equitable outcomes. Others are rethinking their grantmaking strategies from the perspective of reducing disparities within our society. This post highlights some of the ways Read more

The Alliance magazine June issue – Solidarity – more in common?

FavoriteSolidarity – more in common? ‘We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.’ These were the words of Jo Cox in her maiden speech to the UK Parliament on 3 June 2015. On 16 June 2016, just over one year later, Cox was murdered on her way to a meeting in her constituency. The Alliance special feature, guest edited by King Baudouin Foundation’s Stefan Schäfers, explores the complex and sensitive relationship between philanthropy and solidarity. Jo Cox’s murder was not just an affront to our common humanity but a Read more

Three Ways Funders Delude Themselves About Equity

FavoriteThis editorial points out ways that funders get in their own way when it comes to equity and how they can avoid doing so. They include: Not clearly defining what equity means Assuming aggregate data indicates an equitable outcome Expecting grantees to address equity without doing so themselves

Financial Inclusion – Opportunities and Risks for Donors

FavoritePeople living in poverty often lack access to safe, reliable ways to manage the little money they have. As a result, they face de facto exclusion from the financial system the rest of us rely on. To address this problem, a unique philanthropic project, funded by the Gates Foundation and led by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and Bankable Frontier Associates, formed partnerships with five large banks in the developing world. The approach was straightforward: research and implement new approaches to providing poor people with the financial tools they deserve. This philanthropic-public-private collaboration focused on sustainable financial inclusion—developing savings accounts that could Read more

The Road to Achieving Equity 12 Findings from a Field Scan of Foundations That Are Embracing Equity

FavoriteOver the past few years, equity has emerged as a key issue in American society, described as the “defining issue of our time” by authors and speakers in various fields. In the first half of 2016, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation asked Putnam Consulting Group to conduct a field scan to learn how other foundations are working to incorporate equity — both in their internal operations and in their grantmaking. We conducted 30 conversations with staff leaders at 15 foundations considered by their peers to be on the forefront in embracing equity.

Equity: is Your Foundation Ready to Invest in Building Opportunity for All?

FavoriteTo help foundation leaders and their boards begin essential conversations about marginalized populations and determine the extent to which their organization’s culture and grantmaking practices are aligned with a commitment to expanding opportunity in the communities they serve, CMF developed this discussion guide and self-assessment.

Evaluating the Kaiser Permanente Community Fund’s Social Determinants of Health Portfolio

FavoriteThe authors present an overview of the Kaiser Permanente Community Fund’s social determinants of health initiative and its theory of change. The fund is based at the Northwest Health Foundation. The authors introduce frameworks and methods used to conduct their evaluation. The fund reached multiple sectors and established new partners and relationships, but the lack of depth may limit opportunities to make a profound and measurable difference within any specic domain.

Strategies for Impacting Change in Communities of Color

FavoriteThe authors describe the work of the Cultures of Giving initiative funded by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation over a ve-year period. The goal of the initiative was to understand, develop, and support philanthropic giving within and among communities of color. Based on learning from evaluations, as the initiative progressed the theory of change was modied and new program components were added. Results suggest that leadership development is an important strategy. A community of practice around giving in communities of color was created, suggesting the potential for long-term impact.

Building the Bridge for Diversity and Inclusion: Testing a Regional Strategy

FavoriteThe creation of effective diverse and inclusive organizations requires leaders to embrace the role of change agent. This is a complex journey that involves leaders experimenting, learning and creating a new way to organize. This article examines the Council of Michigan Foundations’ (CMF) six-year initiative, Transforming Michigan Philanthropy through Diversity and Inclusion (TMP).

Moving Diversity Up the Agenda: Lessons and Next Steps From the Diversity in Philanthropy Project

FavoriteThe Diversity in Philanthropy Project (DPP) was a three-year voluntary effort of leading foundation trustees, senior staff, and philanthropy support organization executives committed to increasing diversity and inclusive practice across organized philanthropy’s boards, staff, grantmaking, contracting, and investing. DPP had significant achievements, but also faced its share of challenges.

Beyond the NPR Crowd: How Evaluation Influenced Grantmaking at the California Council for the Humanities

FavoriteAn initiative engaging a broad cross-section of Californians in the humanities found that book reading groups participants were predominantly white, middle-aged women. Changing the type of programming to include poetry slams, photography, and writing programs broadened participation of various ages and ethnic groups.

Youth Civic Engagement for Dialogue and Diversity at the Metropolitan Level

FavoriteThis article analyzes Youth Dialogues on Race and Ethnicity, a foundation-funded program designed to increase dialogue, challenge segregation, and create change in metropolitan Detroit. It draws on multilevel evaluation of the program and analyzes some of the lessons learned.

Engaging Diverse Communities

FavoriteThe guide shares and explains the experiences of several institutions that broadened their donor bases, services, and programs by reaching out to diverse communities. The publication focuses on the African American, Asian American, Latino, and Native American communities. This guide explores how the philanthropic field has identified, attracted, and invited participation by individuals from culturally defined communities.