Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO) is a diverse community of 500 grantmakers working to reshape the way philanthropy operates. Understanding that grantmakers are successful only to the extent that their grantees achieve meaningful results, GEO promotes strategies and practices that contribute to grantee success.

Nonprofits are successful at achieving more meaningful change in our communities when they have the resources and skills to be effective. By not adequately responding to what nonprofits say they need most to maximize impact, funders can inadvertently do harm to the organizations and causes we intend to support. Changing grantmaker practice is hard work, but our communities can’t afford for us to wait.

In 1997 a group of philanthropic leaders saw the need for a space where grantmakers could come together to share knowledge and best practices, and inspire their colleagues to act. What started out as a small gathering has grown into a movement connecting grantmakers dissatisfied with the status quo for practical conversations about the best ways to support nonprofits to achieve better results.

For more than 15 years the GEO community has advanced smarter grantmaking practices that enable nonprofits to grow stronger and more effective. As a result, GEO members consistently outpace other funders in terms of making productive changes to help nonprofits achieve more — such as providing support for grantee capacity building, engaging external voices in decision-making, giving multiyear grants, forming strategic partnerships and funding collaboration among grantees.


Reimagining Capacity Building: Navigating Culture, Systems & Power

Posted on October 3, 2021 by Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

Strengthening nonprofit organizations is not just a nice-to-have but an essential part of our work as grantmakers to ensure that nonprofits have the resources they need to address today’s most pressing social concerns. Indeed, the vast majority of staffed foundations — 86 percent — do just that, invest in organizational strengthening in areas such as leadership, fundraising, evaluation, communications and… Read More

Putting Grantees at the Center of Philanthropy (GEO and SSIR Blog Series)

Posted on July 28, 2016 by Grantmakers for Effective Organizations

Research shows that grantmakers that are more connected to their grantees—those that have an ear to the ground—are more likely to provide the support that nonprofits need to be successful; they are five times as likely to offer capacity-building support and two times as likely to offer multiyear support. We also know that tapping the knowledge and perspective of grantees… Read More