Collaboration and Partnership

About this collection: This Content Collection includes a variety of stories of funders engaged in successful collaborations, as well as tips and tools for how to make the most of your relationships with fellow funders and grantees.

Whether working in a funder collaborative or finding ways to better partner with the grantees you support, collaboration and partnership is often at the heart of effective and impactful family philanthropy. This Content Collection includes a variety of stories of funders engaged in successful collaborations, as well as tips and tools for how to make the most of your relationships with fellow funders and grantees.

Interested in learning more on this topic? Check out the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Donor Collaboratives site and Resource Hub.

Collaboration with Other Funders: Tips and Stories

Shh…Be Quiet and Listen

If there’s one thing I’m hearing in sessions and social hours at NCFP’s 20th Anniversary Forum, it’s about how important it is in family philanthropy to listen.

Donor Collaboratives: Maximizing Your Philanthropic Impact

NCFP’s 2015 Trends in Family Philanthropy study found that more than 90 percent of respondents cited the “impact of their giving” as the top motivation for their participation in family philanthropy. This same study found that just 45 percent of family foundations participate in efforts with other funders. If grant…

The Story of How the Civil Marriage Collaborative Helped America Embrace Marriage Equality

There were many forces at work in this historic change: tenacious leaders and litigators, coalitions of diverse lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) organizations, straight individual and organizational allies, elected officials, celebrities, and most important, hundreds of thousands of individuals, couples and families at the grassroots level.

Partnering with Your Grantees and Community

Hey Foundation Trustees, Come Get a Beer with Us

We nonprofits work with program officers, and despite many of them being really nice and down-to-earth people, the power differential can make them intimidating and scary. This is how we nonprofit professionals imagine a meeting of (even scarier) foundation trustees:

“Change Happens at the Speed of Trust”

We knew we had to change the dynamic. We began by changing how we show up as individuals and as an institution. The goal here was to listen with new ears – to get past our own experience, and strive to hear the lived experiences of those impacted by issues…

“Pretty Good Tools” for Collaboration, Strategy, and Partnership

If you’re a philanthropy practitioner — staff member or trustee — these tools should be useful. The Giving Practice works with foundations and philanthropy organizations of all types and sizes, and they hear common questions and dilemmas. The Giving Practice's consultants are developed Pretty Good Tools to help you with…

Walking the Talk: Striving for Authentic Partnership with Our Grantees

In November, PFF Program Officer Laura McCargar joined Michael Moody of the Johnson Center for Family Philanthropy and NCFP Fellow and Board Member Katherine Lorenz of the George and Cynthia Mitchell Foundation at the Grantmakers for Effective Organizations conference in Houston, Texas to talk about collaboration in the context of…

NCFP Webinars and Teleconferences

January 14, 2016

Collaborating Across Power Differences

Power dynamics can really get in the way when you are trying to build a healthy, strong organization. If family foundations and their grantee partners don’t see eye to eye, or if junior members of the family pose challenges to their board leaders or elders, the back-and-forth struggle isn’t just…
March 12, 2009

Building Trust to Promote Community Collaboration

Problems in a community can be hard to solve when the people involved don’t communicate with each other because of their conflicting values across religious, cultural, political, social and other divides. On this teleconference, hear how the Ruth Mott Foundation in Flint, Michigan, worked with the Public Conversations Project to…
October 2, 2008

Engaging Stakeholders for Better Grantmaking

We hear more and more these days about working with grantees as partners. But how is that really done? And does it truly make the work of your foundation more effective? Courtney Bourns, Director of Programs for Grantmakers for Effective Organizations offers strategies for authentically engaging grantees and other community…