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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: Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City

    How listening to the needs of its community inspired a foundation to develop a new capacity building program that supports civic leadership, community collaboration and more equitable outcomes.

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

    GEOList Summary: Examples of Forward Leaning Work By Intermediaries

    What is the risk position should intermediaries be taking in their respective ecosystems? How far out front on issues of equity, inclusion, and social justice should they be? What are best practices in staying in authentic integrity with the field/movement when they may be playing a resourcing role? Should intermediaries lead the way in diffusing the power dynamics of philanthropy through democratizing decision making and more?

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • June 2017
  • Member Story

    Smarter Grantmaking in Action: Native Arts and Cultures Foundation

    How empowering community members through capacity building and collaboration strengthens engagement to motivate lasting social change.

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

    GEOList: Intermediary Grant/Data Management for Corporate/Foundation Funders

    We would be interested in learning more about systems and/or process that other intermediary grant makers may have used to help streamline the communication and flow of data between their fundraising and grant making teams.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • May 2017
  • 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

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

    Foundation Leaders Roundtable: Strengthening Philanthropy’s Voice

    The session will provide an open and honest discussion among foundation CEOs about when and how the philanthropic sector, as well as individual foundations, can offer a strong and clear voice and point of view on issues facing our communities and country today.

    • July 2017

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Perspectives on Philanthropy

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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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