Providence Business News recently featured an interview with Roshni Darnal, Director of Community Investments at United Way of Rhode Island, who shared about shifts in United Way’s grantmaking: Read article
GCRI partner, Funders Committee for Civic Participation (FCCP), recently hosted a webinar on Power Sharing as part of their Summer Equity and Power Sharing series.
Slides and a recording of the program are now available. Thanks to FCCP for making this available to the Forum network, and thanks to Lori Villarosa of Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (PRE) for walking funders through how philanthropy can intentionally tackle the realities of racism and connect these threads to present day grantmaking practices, as well as to Jennifer Epps-Addison with The Center for Popular Democracy, Dana Kawaoka-Chen with Justice Funders, Dimple Abichandani with General Service Foundation, and Farhad Ebrahimi with Chorus Foundation for addressing power sharing and grantmaking strategies that can change the who, what, and how of support through integrating a racial equity lens.
As a benefit of membership, GCRI members are eligible to receive legal support through United Philanthropy Forum at a reduced cost.
The Forum launched the Foundation Legal Help Desk a year ago for community foundations, and now that the pilot phase has concluded, the program is being expanded to serve private foundations as well. The Help Desk is operated by our colleagues at the Indiana Philanthropy Alliance.
The Help Desk is designed to provide foundations with access to answers to legal questions related to the operations of a foundation. The foundation world is a complex field that requires specialized legal knowledge and many foundations do not have easy access to an attorney with expertise in this field.
How Does it Work?
The service operates through a website. Participants log in with a username and password and type in their question. The software will send it to the attorney “on-call” for their topic area. The attorney will respond either with a written answer or will make arrangements for a phone conversation.
The attorneys providing this service have specialized knowledge in grantmaking, scholarships, fund management, planned giving, nonprofit law, the Pension Protection Act, UPMIFA and other laws that specifically affect the operations of a foundation.
- This service is designed to provide quick answers to questions and is limited to a maximum of one hour on any one question. The attorney will be able to advise the foundation if they need to engage counsel to assist them with a complex legal issue or gift.
- The attorney will engage directly with foundation staff or board members, and will not work directly with donors or professional advisors.
- The attorney can review documents but will not prepare any documents.
- This service is for legal questions that relate to the operation of a foundation, not legal issues facing a foundation’s grantees.
Foundations will contact IPA directly to subscribe to the service, and IPA will provide them with a subscription agreement. Once they send the agreement back to IPA with their payment, IPA will provide them with their login credentials. IPA will let you know when any of your members sign up for the service, and will provide each PSO with an annual report on usage by your members and the topic areas of questions handled.
Service Levels and Costs
Boston will play host to two valuable conferences this summer:
This is a tremendous opportunity to engage with peers, colleagues, experts and innovative practitioners working in health philanthropy today.
Presented by the Forum in partnership with Associated Grant Makers, the two-day Community Foundation Boot Camp program offers a comprehensive overview of the structure and operations of a community foundation. The program is an ideal in-depth introduction to community foundations for new community foundation staff, community foundation board members, or more experienced community foundation staff looking for a good refresher. Training is provided by Indiana Philanthropy Alliance.
Vu Le is a popular blogger and nonprofit leader, and his “Foundations, How Aggravating Is Your Grantmaking Process” checklist is a good start for funders looking to evaluate the user friendliness of their funding request processes. While some of the items are humorous, many point to important factors in determining whether nonprofits are able to complete your process in a positive way. (He also has a reverse checklist for grantseekers’ ability to aggravate funders!)
Thursday, 8 June, 2017 • noon-2:30pm
Non-profit organizations are increasingly grappling with the threat of cyberattacks– and turning to their funders for support. For most grantmakers, however, cybersecurity is not an area of expertise. Reflecting the universality of the cybersecurity threat, eight donor affinity groups offer this webinar focused on how funders can support grantees in addressing and responding to digital security concerns. Content will include:
- A debrief: Digital Security & Grantscraft Guide: An introductory guide for funders.
- Lessons learned and strategies pursued by a donor that has recently invested in digital security as an area of concern for his/her grantees.
- Discussion of the strategies and infrastructure already built and in use, particularly as related to grantmaking focused on the Global South, for rapid response/ emergency cybersecurity-related grantmaking.
Following these presentations and a general Q&A period, donors will have the opportunity to join more narrowly-focused breakout conversations via separate, but parallel, conference calls. The focus topic for each breakout conversation is currently in development and will be announced at a later date.
Sponsored by: Consultative Group on Biological Diversity, Funders’ Committee for Civic Participation, Funders Concerned About AIDS, Funders for Reproductive Equity, Global Philanthropy Project, Grantmakers Income Security Taskforce, Health and Environmental Funders Network, and International Human Rights Funders Group
The Fund for Shared Insight (FFSI) is a collaborative effort among funders that pools financial and other resources to make grants to improve philanthropy. FFSI emerged from the belief that foundations will be more effective and make an even bigger difference in the world if they are more open – if they share what they are learning and are open to what others want to share with them, including grantees and the people they seek to help.
The Fund for Shared Insight has several opportunities for your members to be involved in their Listen for Good initiative. Listen for Good (L4G) is an initiative dedicated to building the practice of listening to the people funders seek to help. They invite nonprofits and funders to join in exploring a simple but systematic and rigorous way of getting feedback from the people at the heart of their work. Listen for Good is focused on applying a semi-standard survey instrument, which includes using the Net Promoter SystemSM (NPS®) employed widely in customer feedback circles, to the nonprofit beneficiary context. Organizations implementing L4G are all customer-facing nonprofits.
In 2016, FFSI made 46 L4G grants supported by 28 nominating co-funders. 2017 grantees of L4G will receive $45,000 over two years ($30,000 from Fund for Shared Insight and $15,000 from a nominating co-funder), as well as access to technical assistance to guide their implementation efforts.
FFSI is holding a series of open conference calls on April 7 and April to answer questions from potential co-funders about how to nominate a grantee(s) for Listen for Good. FFSI created a page about Listen for Good called “Information for Funders” with details on Listen for Good and how to nominated grantees.
Revised Guide to Grants Management Software
Grants Managers Network, Idealware and Technology Affinity Group have announced the release of an update to the “Consumers Guide to Grant Management Systems.” Because vendors are constantly improving their products between editions of the report, the report will now be published every six months to reflect new information and improvements. This is a very useful resource if your organization is evaluating your current GMS or looking into new systems. Download the Update
GCRI Members Eligible for Discount on Idealware Grants Management System Webinar Series
Idealware is offering a webinar series to help funders quickly gain a baseline of knowledge about Grants Management Systems (GMS) in order to narrow down options that make sense for individual organizations. GMS is a big investment, and GCRI members can receive a $50 discount on the Idealware webinars, which will provide you with the impartial information you need to accelerate your evaluation process. The five sessions will help you think through your organization’s needs, host demos that cut the sales pitch and get right to the information that matters most, and talk you through what you’ll need to do to implement your system efficiently. More information
Those of you in the market for Grants Management Software need to take advantage of all the homework done on your behalf by the Technology Affinity Group, Grants Managers Network and Idealware. Take a look at their Consumers Guide to Grants Management Systems before you start your shopping, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time and headaches!