Foundations and donors: Boost your impact in 2019

NCRP journal offers reflections on using power, rapid-response support and other practices to promote equity and justice.

Written by: NCRP

Date: February 13, 2019

The beginning of the year is a chance for many funders to examine what they can do better – and differently – to move justice and equity forward in communities and issues they care about.

“There are many in philanthropy who are absolutely committed to ensuring that foundations and wealthy donors do everything in their power to defend democracy and build a more just society,” wrote Aaron Dorfman, chief executive of the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP).

The newly released February edition of “Responsive Philanthropy” offers grantmakers and philanthropists examples of ways they can be more effective and strategic in their giving.

Philanthropy: Perilous times call for bold measures

Tory Gavito, president and CEO of Way to Win, invites fellow philanthropists to take more risks by giving more, breaking silos and funding local efforts. According to Gavito, doing all these will “create the groundswell of organized people, ideas and resources required to change the trajectory of history.”

How to think about power (especially if you have some)

Farhad Ebrahimi, president of Chorus Foundation, shares how understanding the “ecosystem” of power transformed his foundation’s approach to climate philanthropy. “What are the unspoken assumptions in our sector,” Ebrahimi asks. “What could it look like to challenge those assumptions?”

Lessons for foundations on rapid-response support at the front lines of democracy

Many funders have responded to these challenging times through rapid-response support. But what does it take to provide resources quickly and effectively? Shireen Zaman and Melissa Spatz, program directors at Proteus Fund, share 5 tips for funders.

What does Amazon’s HQ2 tax-grab mean for U.S. Cities?

Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First, and Ryan Schlegel, research director at NCRP, highlights 4 ways that funders can help community-led efforts to ensure that HQ2 benefits “the 99% as much as it benefits Bezos.”