How Do Family Foundations Typically Provide Discretionary Grants?

Q: How do family foundations typically provide discretionary grants? What about for committee members that aren’t board members?

A: According to our 2015 Trends in Family Philanthropy study, “Most family foundations (85 percent) allow individual board members to recommend discretionary grants for foundation funds.” Each family foundation ultimately has to find the balance that’s right for them! NCFP has published two issue briefs on the topic of discretionary grants: Discretionary Grants: Engaging Family… or Pandora’s Box? and Discretionary Grants: Encouraging Participation… or Dividing Families?

Additionally, NCFP offers a quite a few sample discretionary grant policies, found in Policy central: Board meetings, job descriptions, and rotation policies

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Discretionary Grants

This Content Collection includes NCFP's two timeless issue briefs on the use and possible challenges of Discretionary Grantmaking, as well as sample forms and policies related to discretionary grants.

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