When you look at the common reasons foundations give for not taking applications, they kind of fall apart. At the end of the day, it really just comes down to a choice—a barrier intentionally placed between tax-subsidized wealth, and the public that it’s legally required to benefit.
In this piece, Lenore Hanisch explores how the assumptions we make about wealth, race, gender, and family can inhibit our ability to do the work we set out to do, including connecting with others who share our vision of resourcing positive change.
Friends Focus highlights updates from members of our Friends of the Family network and their cutting edge work. This month features updates from the W. Clement and Jessie V. Stone Foundation; the Surdna Foundation; the Durfee Foundation; Lumpkin Family Foundation and the Tracy Family Foundation.
2017 was a challenging and frustrating year for many of us who work in family philanthropy. The nation’s political climate—characterized by intense partisan polarization and accompanied by a parade of troublesome public policy changes—has undone years of hard work and placed new burdens on the nonprofits we support and the communities we serve.
Transparency enhances our ability to learn, to lead, to reach consensus, and even agree to disagree. That’s because adopting a mindset of transparency encourages deeper participation and helps us stay focused on our mission. As a result, we tend to be more successful and satisfied working together because we know more about what’s going on.
How do family foundations keep the focus on family in their philanthropy? In a January webinar, three family foundation colleagues from multiple generations joined NCFP’s president Ginny Esposito to talk about families large and small, and the shared values that hold them together over time.
The Surdna Foundation recently published, “Social Justice at the Surdna Foundation,” which outlines their commitment to social justice. This has required difficult and ongoing conversations, a broad understanding of long-term systemic change, and acknowledgement that the work will never be "done."
Placemaking places people at the heart of its process—empowering individuals by giving them an active voice in shaping the spaces around them, mapping and designing their own communities. The Levitt Foundation highlights a few fascinating placemaking projects from around the globe that illustrate the beauty of people coming together and creating a shared vision for their community.