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In Conversation: Two Community Foundations In Dialogue About Their Equitable Evaluation Framework™ Practice, Madeline Brandt, Kelly Casey, Jean-Marie Callan, Joel Hicks-Rivera, Kim Leonard, Madeline Nguyen, Elena Tamanas Ragusa, Cierra Stancil, Kimberlee Salmond, Becky Seel, Kate Szczerbacki Sep 2023

In Conversation: Two Community Foundations In Dialogue About Their Equitable Evaluation Framework™ Practice, Madeline Brandt, Kelly Casey, Jean-Marie Callan, Joel Hicks-Rivera, Kim Leonard, Madeline Nguyen, Elena Tamanas Ragusa, Cierra Stancil, Kimberlee Salmond, Becky Seel, Kate Szczerbacki

The Foundation Review

This conversation between staff at the Oregon Community Foundation and the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving shares how we are infusing the Equitable Evaluation Framework™ into our practice as we aim to be less extractive, shift power, and honor all ways of knowing and being as valid. In sharing this conversation, we want to pull the curtain back and offer a behind-the-scenes view into the conversations, realities, and challenges involved in doing this kind of work.

We sat down together for 90 minutes on a Wednesday afternoon, and the following is a rough transcript of our time together. The intention …


The Transformative Power Of The 2030 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, Anna Wasescha, Christa Otteson, Sarah Casey Dec 2021

The Transformative Power Of The 2030 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, Anna Wasescha, Christa Otteson, Sarah Casey

The Foundation Review

West Central Initiative, a mostly rural community foundation and regional development organization in Minnesota, integrated the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals into its strategic plan in 2019. This article explores how aligning the U.N. goals with the foundation’s “nested strategy” of local, regional, and global goals has aligned and energized the disparate functions of the organization.

This article describes the strategic planning process that led to adoption of the goals, articulates how they have helped evolve the interplay of economic development and philanthropy, and identifies lessons learned from the first two years of working with the goals.

Focusing on …


Regional Inclusive Growth Through Systems Philanthropy In Essex County, Massachusetts, Lisa Payne Simon, Stratton Lloyd, Beth Francis Dec 2020

Regional Inclusive Growth Through Systems Philanthropy In Essex County, Massachusetts, Lisa Payne Simon, Stratton Lloyd, Beth Francis

The Foundation Review

In 2016, the Essex County Community Foundation forged a cross-sector coalition of business, community, and civic leaders to identify the Massachusetts region’s greatest challenges and to develop a strategy for action. Income inequality was identified as the county’s most pressing issue, and the foundation and its partners launched a systems philanthropy strategy to address that issue and stimulate inclusive growth.

The strategy involves a multipronged approach aimed at amplifying the county’s strengths, launching inclusive-growth initiatives, expanding workforce training and skill development to increase a broad target population’s earning potential and net worth, incentivizing and supporting small-business resiliency and growth, and …


Capacity-Building Catalysts: A Qualitative Assessment Of Nonprofit Capacity Building By Community Foundations In Illinois, Benjamin Bingle Dec 2019

Capacity-Building Catalysts: A Qualitative Assessment Of Nonprofit Capacity Building By Community Foundations In Illinois, Benjamin Bingle

The Foundation Review

Community foundations have the potential to promote collaborative learning in a variety of ways as conveners, funders, and, in some instances, as nonprofit capacity builders. Yet little is known about what community foundations are doing to support capacity building. This article focuses specifically on nonprofit capacity building that is funded, organized, or led by community foundations in Illinois.

First, this article identifies the capacity-building efforts of those community foundations. Next, it summarizes results from a qualitative survey to share insights from leaders of the foundations that offer capacity-building opportunities. These data shed new light on our collective understanding of how …


Growth Of Community-Based Giving Days In The United States: The Landscape And Effects, Catherine Humphries Brown, Abhishek Bhati Sep 2019

Growth Of Community-Based Giving Days In The United States: The Landscape And Effects, Catherine Humphries Brown, Abhishek Bhati

The Foundation Review

Over the past decade, local and regional community foundations across the United States have adopted “giving days” as a means to build awareness, bolster community pride, and raise money for local nonprofit organizations. Despite the increasing prevalence of giving days, little scholarly research has empirically examined this phenomenon and its impact, particularly at the local and regional levels.

To address these gaps, this article shares the findings of a study that examined similarities and differences across communities’ giving days and sought to evaluate the extent to which those days led to more giving at the community level.

While the study …


Fostering Change And Fresh Voices: Vancouver Foundation’S Youth Engagement Journey, Trilby Smith Dec 2018

Fostering Change And Fresh Voices: Vancouver Foundation’S Youth Engagement Journey, Trilby Smith

The Foundation Review

Since 2011, Vancouver Foundation has invested significant time, energy, ideas, and money in bringing together immigrant and refugee youth and young people with lived experience of the foster care system in British Columbia.

Through its Fostering Change and Fresh Voices initiatives, the foundation has listened and worked in partnership with these young people to address the issues that affect their lives, and important progress has been made in the forms of meaningful policy changes and improved political engagement. The foundation is now in the process of returning these initiatives to the communities that inspired them.

This article describes the roles …


Thinking Big: Community Philanthropy And Management Of Large-Scale Assets, Mary Fifield Sep 2017

Thinking Big: Community Philanthropy And Management Of Large-Scale Assets, Mary Fifield

The Foundation Review

This article presents three case studies — from Ghana, the U.S., and Canada — to examine how community philanthropy might scale up to support community asset management and increase the power of communities to determine their own development with much greater and more complex financial investments.

Community philanthropy institutions have become increasingly popular — especially in the Global South, where they serve to harness local assets, cultivate local capacities, and build trust among diverse stakeholders. Although bilateral donors and other international development funders are beginning to recognize the power of these local organizations, they are usually considered small-scale actors.

As …


A Community Foundation’S Experience Implementing And Evaluating General Operating Support, Annemarie Riemer, Erika Frank, Hedda Rublin, Susan Merrow-Kehoe Jun 2017

A Community Foundation’S Experience Implementing And Evaluating General Operating Support, Annemarie Riemer, Erika Frank, Hedda Rublin, Susan Merrow-Kehoe

The Foundation Review

In 2013, the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving began to offer unrestricted general operating support grants in response to grantees’ expressed need. The foundation hired Technical Development Corp., a Boston consulting firm, to evaluate the process and implementation.

This article shares early indicators of the impact of the new grantmaking approach on both grantees and the foundation. Grantee outcomes include enhanced infrastructure and financial health, continued progress on strategic plan goals, and more creative thinking about programs. Beyond the adoption of a new funding option, the decision led the foundation to modify its overall grantmaking process.

The greatest challenge – …


The Boston Foundation’S Collaborate Boston Prize, Jennifer Aronson Oct 2015

The Boston Foundation’S Collaborate Boston Prize, Jennifer Aronson

The Foundation Review

This article describes how the Boston Foundation is leveraging Collaborate Boston, a competition launched in 2013, as a tool to support interorganizational and cross-sector collaboration in greater Boston to catalyze, surface, and implement ideas that have the potential to strengthen communities facing complex challenges.

After a discussion of Collaborate Boston’s theory of change and the prize design and process, the article shares early results from the inaugural 2013 competition, the foundation’s reflections, and subsequent iterations for 2014 and beyond.

The article concludes with an examination of the ways a prize can be a powerful tool for social change, and outlines …


Managing Expectations When Measuring Philanthropic Impact: A Framework Based On Experience, Frank Ridzi Jan 2012

Managing Expectations When Measuring Philanthropic Impact: A Framework Based On Experience, Frank Ridzi

The Foundation Review

· In order to achieve more targeted community change than possible in conventional grantmaking, foundations have developed a portfolio of activities ranging from capacity building to venture and catalytic philanthropy.

· Key to each of these approaches is a desire for meaningful impact. Yet, funders across the nation express dissatisfaction with their ability to prove or demonstrate impact.

· Conversations with colleagues and personal experience suggest that part of this dissatisfaction is due to a disconnect between the expectations of board members, donors, staff, and participants on one hand and what is actually feasible to measure on the other.

· …


Investigating The Roles Of Community Foundations In The Establishment And Sustainability Of Local College Access Networks In Michigan, Nathan Daun-Barnett, Haley Lamm Jan 2012

Investigating The Roles Of Community Foundations In The Establishment And Sustainability Of Local College Access Networks In Michigan, Nathan Daun-Barnett, Haley Lamm

The Foundation Review

· Community foundations have a long history of supporting college access, particularly through the management of scholarship programs. This article examines the role of community foundations in the creation and establishment of local college access networks (LCAN) across the state of Michigan.

· We use the collective impact model as a framework to examine the roles of community foundations in the creation and development of LCANs.

· Our findings illustrate that community foundations have played a variety of roles, from fundraising to convening to cheerleading.

· The success of the community-foundation approach to LCAN development is evident both in the …


Impact Investing: A 21st Century Tool To Attract And Retain Donors, Amy L. Cheney, Kathryn E. Merchant, Robert Killins Jr. Jan 2012

Impact Investing: A 21st Century Tool To Attract And Retain Donors, Amy L. Cheney, Kathryn E. Merchant, Robert Killins Jr.

The Foundation Review

· A familiar private foundation tool is being used by the Greater Cincinnati Foundation as a way to engage donor advisors to make a positive difference in the community.

· While due diligence and risk management of the financial return for these investments is crucial, the social return to be achieved is the primary consideration.

· Donors can achieve a modest financial return, which is recycled into their donor-advised fund, by investing locally in projects that make a significant difference.

· Initial donor interest in participating in impact investing has been strong and provided valuable insight into program design.

· …


Toward A High-Performance Culture: From Strategy To Strategic Human Capital At The Rhode Island Foundation, Melanie Coon Jan 2012

Toward A High-Performance Culture: From Strategy To Strategic Human Capital At The Rhode Island Foundation, Melanie Coon

The Foundation Review

· The Rhode Island Foundation successfully applied to be part of the first cohort of the Talent Initiative, enabling the foundation to engage in human resources planning in support of its strategic plan.

· The strategic plan called for a shift from responsive to proactive grantmaking, fundraising, and leadership, which required different staff roles and skills.

· The Talent Initiative focused on three areas: talent, systems, and culture.

· The changes that were implemented included adoption of a new performance review system, a road map for professional development, and a streamlined approach to operations and technology support.

· Initial results …