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What We Care About


No organization has the resources to address the complex issues facing our communities. Working together gives us an opportunity to create real change.


of grantmakers believe it is important to coordinate resources and actions with other funders

Collaboration takes place in many forms (like networks, movements, collective impact) and in many funding possibilities (such as co-funding or pooled funds). But regardless of the specific details, one thing is always true — if we want to go far, we have to go together.

Collaboration requires everyone to be honest, trusting and humble. It means being open about what our strengths are as well as what knowledge and expertise our partners bring to the table. And once we understand what role we should play, solving complex challenges together becomes possible. Funding collaboration successfully and being productive partners requires that we do the hard work to set ourselves up for success. But doing so means we’re able to make faster progress on the issues we care about most.

For us, collaboration is about joining with others to try to move the needle, whether on issues such as improving the social, emotional and physical well-being of our youth or ensuring that more kids graduate and go to college.

Cheryl Walker, board chair of the Deaconess Foundation

Helpful Tools and Resources

Stay informed of the emerging trends and promising practices from the field of philanthropy through GEO’s publications and research.

  • Member Story

    Smarter Grantmaking in Action: GHR Foundation

    How co-designing with grantees and partners from Day 1 can lead to stronger collaborations, flexible solutions and more meaningful impact.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • April 2017
  • GEOList Members Only

    GEOList Summary: Study on Regranting

    We are embarking on an exercise to consider the role and various models of regranters and intermediaries - building on internal learning as well as the various guidance that's out there. Have any members conducted a similar exercise, and if so do you have anything you're willing to share?

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • March 2017
  • Playbook

    How Can We Prepare for Collaboration?

    In recent years there has been an increased call for more collaboration in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors. The problems that we seek to address are large and complex, and a go-it-alone mentality will not result in meaningful impact.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • February 2017
  • Member Story Members Only

    Collaboration Profile: Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

    The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation takes an intentional approach to supporting networks within the field of ocean conservation by employing strategies that weave together organizations into networks and foster productive grantmaker-grantee relationships.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • October 2016
  • Member Story Members Only

    Collaboration Profile: Kaiser Permanente

    Capturing and documenting how and when to partner with others so staff have a clearer idea of the organization’s collaboration approach -- and what works.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • October 2016

Upcoming Events

  • Conferences

    2018 National Conference

    The 2018 National Conference will provide participants with the information, connections and experiences to continue improving and pursuing smarter grantmaking practices that positively impact nonprofit effectiveness.

    • April 2018
  • GEO in the Field

    The Future of Collective Impact in Turbulent Times

    How should cross-sector partnerships adapt to meet society’s most complex challenges today?

    • May 2017

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Perspectives on Philanthropy

Interesting thoughts and ideas circulating in the GEO community.

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No matter the outcome we are working toward, our institutions and systems were built to advantage some but not all — and data shows that inequities persist to this day. These inequities become more apparent when we take race into account.

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Strengthening Relationships

When we build trust and tap the knowledge and perspective of nonprofits and the communities we serve, we create better solutions.

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Stephanie Chan


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