The National Center for Family Philanthropy (NCFP) promotes open inquiry and ongoing reflection to advance the practice of family philanthropy, and we value the partnerships and mutual respect that make it possible for families to discover their purpose and possibilities.
In practice, we offer a range of programs and services to both the public and our community members—Friends of the Family, Partner Subscribers, and the NCFP Community Foundations Network. As a community member, you gain access to a range of supports, tools, and benefits.
Join our community as we work to build a world that is vibrant, equitable, and resilient.
Family Philanthropy Webinars
The monthly Fundamentals of Family Philanthropy webinar series provides guidance on the core tenets of effective family philanthropy—from motivations and values to governance, grantmaking, and succession. The series equips giving families with the latest information on evergreen topics in the Family Giving Lifecycle [ through practical takeaways and diverse family stories that illustrate important practices. Designed for seasoned practitioners and newcomers alike, the series is available to all NCFP community members and is offered monthly.
Peer Networks are small-group conversations focused on a particular group, population, or topic. Members of the network can attend as they desire, and the content is peer-driven with an intent to both share resources and build community. Each Peer Network meets approximately quarterly, in addition to an annual retreat with the exception of the Community Foundations Network that convenes monthly.
Current Peer Networks:
- Community Foundations Family Philanthropy Network
- Engaging Youth Peer Network
- Emerging Family Leaders Peer Network
- Non-family Staff Peer Network
- Rural Funders Peer Network
- Strategic Lifespan Peer Network
Conferences, Workshops, and Retreats
NCFP conferences, workshops, and other events bring together a selection of attendees to learn about topics and approaches to better prepare families to lead in their philanthropy. Events are crafted to feature both emerging themes from the sector and fundamental topics in family philanthropy. A cornerstone of all NCFP events is the built-in opportunities for networking and peer engagement. These events provide a platform for donors and those who work with them to discuss their experiences and share learnings with a broader, peer-based audience. NCFP events are both in person and virtual, and serve as touchpoints for the NCFP community but also field-building convenings.
Learning and Action Networks
NCFP Learning and Action Networks (LANs) are ongoing cohorts dedicated to deep shared learning about a specific concept in family philanthropy, with an expectation of a commitment to defined action(s) after the completion of the LAN. Each LAN cohort collectively works through a curriculum with discrete learnings carried out by multiple peer learning events led by experts in the field. Learning and Action Networks provide a connected and dedicated peer community while encouraging funders to think differently and commit to learning and real action. LAN cohorts are gated (by invitation or application).
Salons are small group conversations where peers are led by an expert to discuss a concept, theme, or case study around the principles and practices of family philanthropy. The salons promote group discourse and learning in an intimate, conversational setting. Salons are designed to help participants engage deeply in the discussion at hand, without requiring a commitment to join a cohort or continued small group learning opportunity.
Community Conversations are topical webinars on issues and trends in family philanthropy and are available to the field at large. These events lift up experts in the field, challenge philanthropists in their thinking and practices, and share timely stories and strategies in the family philanthropy community. Offered quarterly.
Community Foundation Programs
Spark Sessions are designed for community foundations to exchange practical advice, tools, and tips from peers on aspects of their family philanthropy engagement. Hour-long, content rich webinars cover topics such as measuring impact, giving circles, and business models for family philanthropy. Regular topical calls are your opportunity to learn from your peers, ask questions of each other, and provide your own insights.
Personalized Staff Support
One of the most significant benefits of being a part of the community is the personalized and unlimited support you will receive from NCFP staff. Whether you are looking to find a sample policy or identify a consultant to help guide your board leadership transition, NCFP staff can help find answers to all your questions and challenges. To get started, fill out our online request for information form.
Are you interested in collaborating with funders working on similar issues? Or hearing from someone who has successfully navigated a transition? NCFP can offer you the peer support to help you navigate challenging times and share proven solutions. Contact us to build your network and find peer support.
NCFP’s Knowledge Center is home to hundreds of family philanthropy resources on topics spanning the full spectrum of the Family Giving Lifecycle. The Knowledge Center also contains Content Collections which curate the best resources on trends and topics in family philanthropy. Explore to find tips, tools, and case studies to help you be a more effective philanthropist.
Family Giving Lifecycle
Family philanthropy has many points of inflection—moments to embrace proven practices and advance momentum or to stall out due to uncertainty and lack of clarity. Rooted in intentional philanthropy, the Family Giving Lifecycle framework names these critical points and orients donors toward effective outcomes through tools and resources.
Policy Central includes sample policies and practices across the full spectrum of the donor lifecycle. From job descriptions and committee roles to budgets and grantmaking strategies, Policy Central provides a starting point so you don’t have to rework the wheel.
The best and most relevant resources on commonly searched topics are conveniently organized into content collections.
Embeddable Search Tool
NCFP’s embeddable search tool allows visitors to your website to seamlessly access the Knowledge Center directly from your site. Visitors can search for content and explore resources such as videos, blog posts, discussion papers, sample policies, assessment tools, and much more. Contact us for more information .
Our webinars are recorded so you can revisit conversations or learn something new. Some families utilize recordings as a part of onboarding their new board or staff.
Legal Referral Services
Need legal advice? NCFP has relationships with experienced legal advisors who offer complimentary initial consultations with network members on legal issues related to foundation management, grantmaking, and governance.
Consulting Services and Referrals
NCFP provides custom support to philanthropic families on issues of purpose, governance, succession, legacy, and next generation engagement. If you’re interested in pursuing a consulting engagement, please contact us. We also provide complimentary referrals to staff-screened consultants and advisors. Consultants and advisors are invited to complete our Recommend a Consultant form to be considered for our referral list.
Leverage NCFP staff expertise for presentations on family philanthropy topics. Contact us for more information.
Pursuit of Excellence: Board Self-Assessment Tool
The Pursuit of Excellence Board Self-Assessment Tool (POE) is designed to help family foundations understand their current performance as they strive for greater effectiveness. POE walks boards through a powerful self-assessment process to quickly pinpoint areas of shared interest for the group. Pursuit of Excellence is available at no cost to current Friends and for $2,500 for those that are not currently Friends of the Family.
Community Foundation Supports and Services
Community Foundations Family Philanthropy Playbook
The Family Philanthropy Playbook organizes resources into 9 training modules that focus on key issues community foundations face when planning and delivering family philanthropy services. The basic information in each module is free to the public. Webinar recordings, topical calls, and most downloadable templates and examples are only available to NCFP’s subscribers.
Community Foundations Family Philanthropy Readiness Self-assessment Tool
NCFP created the Family Philanthropy Readiness Self-Assessment in June 2017 to help community foundations assess their current level of readiness to undertake or expand services to multi-branch and/or multi-generational families. The online survey and resulting report help frame internal questions and decisions about offering family philanthropy services.
NCFP staff is committed to sharing effective practices, innovative solutions, and exciting news from our community members. Contact us to have your updates considered for amplification on social media or in our e-newsletters. Friends of the Family and Leadership Circle supporters’ news is highlighted in our monthly Friends Focus blog series.
Research & Publications
NCFP is committed to providing statistically significant research and seminal publications to advance the practice of effective family philanthropy by sharing sector trends and case studies. Explore our research and publications here.