Multi-Issue Advocacy and Organizing

SmashingSilos-MedSmashing Silos in Philanthropy: Multi-Issue Advocacy And Organizing for Real Results

by Niki Jagpal and Kevin Laskowski

To address long-standing social and economic problems such as alleviating poverty, protecting our environment, improving our education systems and other complex issues, foundations must fund cross-issue grassroots organizations as part of their grantmaking strategy. Such organizations organize and mobilize multiple constituents and citizens to cultivate the power, leadership and relationships necessary to achieve lasting solutions.

As more foundations turn to "strategic" philanthropy to improve effectiveness and evaluation, more grants are directed to organizations working on grantmakers' single-issue of choice, directing resources away from multi-issue advocacy and organizing efforts. "Smashing Silos in Philanthropy: Multi-Issue Advocacy and Organizing for Real Results" encourages grantmakers to step away from the single-issue approach by:

  • Profiling organizations that engage in multi-issue work and noting the contributions this work makes to social capital and civic engagement.
  • Identifying commonly perceived challenges to funding multi-issue advocacy and organizing and offering ideas on ways grantmakers can address them.
  • Providing seven practical tips for foundations that want to effectively fund multi-issue advocacy and organizing.

"Smashing Silos in Philanthropy: Multi-Issue Advocacy and Organizing for Real Results" is the first of a two-part series.


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