Members discuss smarter grantmaking practices.

What We Care About

Equity

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.

GEO has made a commitment to focus on racial equity in grantmaking with the intention of including other dimensions, such as ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation and disabilities as we move further along in this work.

The ultimate goal of grantmaking is to help nonprofits grow stronger to make faster progress on complex issues within our communities. To achieve our vision for individuals and communities, grantmakers must work to address the historic, emerging, dynamic and collective forces at work to suppress racial justice. We as grantmakers inherently do our work from a position of privilege. Actively working to responsibly use our position of privilege to address inequity is the bedrock of effective grantmaking.

We can all find more ways to close the gap between our aspirations and our daily actions. To that end, GEO is creating spaces for these conversations, highlighting resources and stories from those who are already making great strides, and incorporating diversity, equity and inclusion into all aspects of our work.

As a predominantly white organization working in a predominantly white field, GEO has made a commitment to learning and improving internally to better support our members and the field. Steps taken so far include all-staff participation in ABFE’s Responsive Philanthropy in Black Communities training, establishing an internal vision and goals for our organization, the formation of an internal working group to guide and support our work, hiring a senior advisor on racial equity to bring additional capacity and expertise, and prioritizing relationship building with colleague organizations who have long been providing leadership on racial equity for the field of philanthropy.

You don’t do equity, you be equity, and at every moment you have an opportunity to choose equity.

Raquel Gutierrez, director, strategic learning and practice, Vitalyst Health 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.

  • Perspective

    Philanthropy’s Racial Funding Gap is an Urgent Crisis

    The demand for racial justice erupting across a nation ravaged by a pandemic disproportionately impacting communities of color is a call to action: the time for grantmakers to invest in Black leaders and Black-led organizations in America is now.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • July 2020
  • Perspective

    Cross-post: We Need to End Structural Racism and Inequities. How can Data and Evidence Help?

    In this cross-post, Project Evident discusses how data and evidence can help us work to end racism and inequality.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • July 2020
  • Perspective

    Hope is Not a Strategy for Change

    Hear from GEO CEO, Marcus Walton, as he reflects on how hope alone is not a sufficient strategy for change to effectively prevent future racial atrocities and offers thoughts on what a responsive philanthropic strategy must involve.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • June 2020
  • Perspective

    The Obstacle is the Path

    Hear from GEO CEO, Marcus Walton, as he reflects on the impact of the circumstances created by COVID-19 on him personally and how the GEO community is even more important during times of uncertainty.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • April 2020
  • Perspective

    Smarter Grantmaking Practices During—and Beyond—COVID-19

    As a community of grantmakers advocating for philanthropy to put nonprofits and communities at the center of our work, we at GEO think the most important questions grantmakers should be asking center around how you can change your practices to be of greater service to your grantees and others serving communities during this time of crisis and beyond. However, these practices are not only needed during times of crisis. We can make permanent changes that shift more power to people working on the ground to strengthen communities.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • April 2020

Upcoming Events

  • Remote Learning and Webinars

    Race to Lead Revisited: Obstacles and Opportunities in Addressing the Nonprofit Racial Leadership Gap

    Earlier this year, The Building Movement Project (BMP) released Race to Lead Revisited: Obstacles and Opportunities in Addressing the Nonprofit Racial Leadership Gap. This new report, based on over 5,000 responses collected from our 2019 survey, builds upon the findings of previous reports and explores new insights on race and leadership in the nonprofit sector.

    • September 2020
  • Conferences Members Only

    Philanthropy NW Conference Session: Balancing Racial Equity Details and Vision as Senior Leaders

    We know that to be effective in our roles as philanthropic leaders, we need to balance the big with the small. We create strategies at the macro level for racial equity while we pay attention to the implementation details. This session will explore some of the challenges senior executives face when handling strategy at different altitudes - especially racial equity strategy - and offer some possible solutions. You will hear from GEO’s vice president of strategy and learning about his experience balancing the conceptual strategic work with the tactical day-to-day work of operationalizing racial equity.

    • October 2020
  • Workshops Members Only

    Partner Workshop: Building Pro-Black Institutions and Movements

    This two-part webinar for multi-racial participants aims to disrupt the ways anti-Blackness shows up in organizations and communities. The facilitated workshop will involve interactive exercises and an experiential dialogue using historical and contemporary information, self-reflection, institutional analysis, visioning, and collective action planning.

    • October 2020

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Perspectives on Philanthropy

Interesting thoughts and ideas circulating in the GEO community.

Related Topics

Collaboration

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

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Culture

Productive grantmaker culture is one that accelerates progress by supporting nonprofits to be successful.

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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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Suprotik Stotz-Ghosh

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