GCRI’s recent focus on Nonprofit Resilience and Sustainability has been echoed nationwide. Deb Linnell, who has done extensive work on organizational development and sustainability with van Beuren Charitable Foundation grantees, especially from a financial perspective, sent along this resource from the Nonprofit Quarterly: Keeping It In Reserve: Grantmaking for a Rainy Day.
Spearheaded by the leaders of the Center for Effective Philanthropy and Guidestar, 22 national organizations signed on to a letter last week encouraging foundations to consider giving 1% of their annual giving to organizations that support the sector’s capacity and effectiveness. The Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers (GCRI’s national affiliate) was one of the authoring organizations, recognizing the importance of an infrastructure to enable civil society to effectively address the challenges facing our communities today.
An economy needs roads, bridges, and train stations to thrive. A community needs schools, parks, and houses of worship to ensure the flowering of human potential.
And civil society needs infrastructure to ensure that nonprofits and foundations can act with integrity and impact. Nonprofit infrastructure organizations run the training programs that support the growth of our staff and volunteers. They do the research to help us understand what works, and what doesn’t. They build the technology platforms that make communication and learning possible. They hold the conferences that gather nonprofit leaders together and provide them the resources and connections to improve their work. They advocate for new levels of excellence to push us all to do better — and for policies that create the legal environment in which we work.
In short, they make foundations and nonprofits more effective in their quest to make the world better.
For more information, you can read Jacob Harold’s blog post at Guidestar or Dave Biemesderfer’s Forum blog post, which also gives information about the Forum’s efforts to engage the philanthropic support organizations in a collaborative effort to better support the needed work in our communities.