Funding For Marginalized Communities

Building on our successful campaign to break up the monopoly of the United Way on workplace giving, we examine who benefits from philanthropy and encourages foundations to increase funding for lower income communities, communities of color and other underserved groups.

AA029151-smallOur current work in this area includes:

  • Demonstrating the need for philanthropy to benefit underserved communities to maximize the impact of limited grant dollars.
  • Documenting the impact of groups working for social, racial and economic justice and the foundations that support them.

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Related Initiatives


Freedom Funders: Philanthropy and The Civil Rights Movement 1955-1965

This report looks at four foundations that provided critical support to the Civil Rights Movement providing lessons to the social justice funders of today.

Criteria for Philanthropy at Its Best: Benchmarks to Assess and Enhance Grantmaker Impact
This is the first ever set of measurable guidelines for foundations and institutional grantmakers to operate ethically and maximize the impact of their dollars.
Grantmaking for Community Impact Project
Learn about the positive impact that communities have seen through funder-supported nonpartisan policy and community engagement in seven sites across the country on issues ranging from poverty and homelessness to education and environmental justice.
High Impact Strategies for Philanthropy
Grantmakers focusing on arts and culture, education, environment, health and other issues can boost their impact by thinking about who benefits from their giving and how policy and community engagement might help them address the root causes of the social problems they care about.
Philanthropy's Promise
Celebrates many of the country’s most innovative and influential grantmaking institutions that seek to maximize the effectiveness of their grants and generate the greatest impact in their communities.


Related Publications

The Philanthropic Landscape
by Niki Jagpal and Kevin Laskowski
May 2013, November 2012
The Philanthropic Landscape in an annual examination of the latest available data to bring you analyses of four key grantmaking trends in U.S. philanthropy: giving that specifically benefit underserved communities, social justice philanthropy, core support and multi-year funding.

Seizing the Moment: Frank Advice for Community Organizers Who Want to Raise More Money

by Aaron Dorfman and Marjorie Fine
November 2009
This short paper provides useful and pragmatic tips that can help community organizers dramatically increase funding from institutional grantmakers and major individual donors.

Rural Philanthropy: Building Dialogue from Within

by Rachael Swierzewski
August 2007
This report illustrates the disparity in giving between urban and rural nonprofits, and how geographical isolation and capacity-building needs greatly reduce the ability for rural nonprofits to secure funding.

Social Justice Philanthropy: The Latest Trend or a Lasting Lens for Grantmaking?

May 2005
This report defines and discusses the concept of social justice philanthropy and provides an assessment of its future in philanthropy. The report explores how grantmakers define and apply the concept of social justice to their work.

View other related publications


Statements and Testimonies

Creating a Philanthropic Sector that is More Responsive to the Needs of Diverse Communities

NCRP submitted its comments to the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight on whether the charitable organizations are serving the needs of diverse communities. The subcommittee held a hearing on September 25, 2007.

See all statements and testimonies


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