Impactful Collaboration, DEI Consulting, and More – The Latest Issue of The Foundation Review
by Teri Behrens
The latest issue of The Foundation Review covers a broad range of topics related to the work of philanthropy, from ever-green challenges to emerging approaches to supporting work in communities. We hope you will find something you can use in these articles as you address challenges old and new.
Please note that the first three articles below are open access for all, while the full issue is available online only to subscribers.
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Inside this issue:
Growth of Community-Based Giving Days in the United States: The Landscape and Effects
Catherine Humphries Brown and Abhishek Bhati
One of the more recent approaches to community philanthropy has been the emergence of community giving days. Typically spear-headed by a community foundation, giving days are an opportunity to encourage philanthropy within a geographic community and raise awareness of the work of nonprofit organizations. Humphries Brown and Bhati analyzed the impact of these giving days and found that while the total amount of giving increased between 2009 and 2016, the median amount dropped and the range widened. While the number of giving days is increasing, and they may help increase the number of donors, the expectation about how much money they will raise in any given community should be modest.
Scaling Programs With Research Evidence and Effectiveness (SPREE)
Nan L. Maxwell and Scott B. Richman
How to scale successful programs is another frequent challenge in the sector. Maxwell and Richman describe a process called SPREE — Scaling Programs with Research Evidence and Effectiveness — that has been found to help grantees scale successfully. Efforts to scale programs need to assess both which interventions are likely to be successfully scaled and which organizations are ready to engage in scaling programs. Systematic use of evaluation is key to success.
Publicness and the Identity of Public Foundations
Alexandra K. Williamson and Belinda G. Luke
As critiques about philanthropy have increased in recent years, Williamson and Luke’s exploration of the ways in which a foundation is “public” raises important considerations. They investigated the ways Australia’s public ancillary funds understand their identity as public foundations, and examined how perceptions of publicness inform and influence the practice, conduct, and identity of grantmaking foundations. Two dimensions of publicness were significant: donations, or public money; and grantmaking, or public benefit. Community foundations in the U.S. are similarly situated, needing to consider both dimensions in order to achieve the goal of transparency.
Strengthening Support for Grantees: Four Lessons for Foundations
Anna J. Bettis and Susan Pepin
While funders often see a big part of their role as strengthening the nonprofits they support, Bettis and Pepin explore issues that are emerging as nonprofits are tasked with addressing systems change. Funders must take into account the dynamic social systems within which the nonprofits they fund aim to effect change. Funders that build partnerships, recognize and respond to grantee business models, ease reporting burdens, and leverage their power to convene are more likely to make significant contributions to improving the resiliency of communities.