Voices from the Field Posts

Failure talks with TPW: A conversation with Sapphira Goradia

Posted by Devon Cohn, Sapphira Goradia and The Philanthropy Workshop on June 14, 2016

This is the first in a series of conversations with members of The Philanthropy Workshop curated by TPW member Devon Cohn. "TPW Talks Failure" examines stories about lessons learned, about the process of failing, and cautionary tales that shine a light into less explored areas or less well understood areas of the philanthropic world. This is a transcript of an interview with Sapphira Goradia, Executive Driector of The Goradia Foundation, which has been edited for clarity.

Helping others embrace the American dream: The A.C. Ratshesky Foundation celebrates 100 years

Posted by Judy Sneath on June 9, 2016

To celebrate his 50th birthday, a Boston-area banker named Abraham "Cap" Ratshesky chose to give a gift to his community by setting aside some of his wealth to create a foundation. A century later, that giving continues.

Boardroom battles: 5 ways to move beyond conflict

Posted by Kris Putnam-Walkerly on May 31, 2016

Most board members are rational, committed professionals. However, even among the most collegial boards there's always the possibility of conflict, and savvy foundation leaders I know have used the following approaches to diffuse disagreement smoothly and quickly.

To make a difference, family philanthropy must take more risks

Posted by Katherine Lorenz on May 24, 2016

Many of us in family philanthropy are driven by a grand vision of a better world. We are motivated by bold ideas, and finding ways to use our philanthropy to make a difference and leave a lasting impact. And, at the same time, we are too often hamstrung by a fear of failure.

The world belongs to our children

Posted by Alan Fox on May 17, 2016

We live in a world of growing income disparities, human rights violations, increasing environmental concerns, political instability and ongoing global threats and atrocities. We will never have an impact on these issues until we enlist the help of those who will be 60 years old in 2071. Yes, I’m talking about the five-year-olds of today.

Free legal training: Electioneering rules for private foundations and public charities

Posted by Learn Foundation Law on May 13, 2016

Learn Foundation Law is a free resource for online trainings and tools related to the basic legal rules for private foundations.

Even with complex histories, families have an opportunity to advance equity

Posted by David Neal on May 3, 2016

Racial diversity and inclusion have been central to the grant making strategy at the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation for decades. In more recent years, the Foundation has deepened its engagement with racial equity. For David L. Neal, a family member and trustee at the Winston-Salem, N.C., family foundation, this focus on equity has been a high priority. Not long ago, however, as he was researching his family’s — and the foundation’s — history, he discovered that its legacy is more complicated than he had once thought.

Giving circles: A tool for engaging youth in giving

Posted by Huong Nguyen- Yap on April 29, 2016

We often hear that young people are the leaders of tomorrow. But what if we started to think about them and support them to be leaders today? What does that mean and how would it look? Philanthropy gives us an opportunity to work with youth on developing life skills such as decision-making, collaboration and, more importantly, empowering youth as leaders in their communities. Engaging youth in philanthropy gives them the ability to make decisions that impact their lives, their communities, and society as a whole.

3 ways foundations squash risk-taking

Posted by Kris Putnam-Walkerly on April 26, 2016

There was a time not too long ago when you rarely heard the word “foundation” and “risk” in the same sentence…or paragraph…or entire document. Risk simply hasn’t been something formally and broadly associated with philanthropy over the past few decades. However, it’s become pretty obvious to many people that the traditional ways of grantmaking are not enough to make a dent in the entrenched and intertwined social challenges of poverty, inequity, education or healthcare.

10 questions to help start the values conversation

Posted by Suzanne Hammer on April 21, 2016

The way to fulfillment in philanthropy—and by and large as a family—is the degree to which you are driven by purpose and shared values. In other words, why you give matters just as much, if not more, than what you give. Whether you are talking about preserving wealth or giving it away, it’s important to be clear on the family and individual values that drive that decision. Yet, how many people have voiced their own values, less held a conversation with loved ones about the values they share? My guess? Not many.

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