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What We Care About

Flexible, Reliable Funding

When we provide funding that gives nonprofits space to innovate and the security to know our support is here for the long haul, they worry less about their own survival and focus more on responding to shifts in their environment and lifting up their communities.

81 %

of funders report giving some general operating support grants

Flexible, reliable funding, such as general operating support, multiyear grants and funds that cover indirect costs, gives nonprofits the resources to strengthen their organizations, respond to changes in our communities and make real progress.. When we provide funding that gives nonprofits space to innovate and the security to know our support is here for the long haul, they worry less about their own survival and focus more on responding to shifts in their environment and lifting up their communities.

Often, offering flexible, reliable support comes down to really trusting nonprofits. But solving complex issues is hard work — and nonprofits know what they need to reach their goals and support community members. That’s why GEO’s research shows that grantmakers who are more connected to their grantees are more likely to provide the support that nonprofits need to be successful. Making a real difference on some of the most deep-rooted, systemic problems our communities face requires us to give nonprofits the support they need to grow and become stronger for the long-term.

Time is our most precious commodity. There are only so many workable hours in a week. Multiyear support gives a small agency like ours the ability to focus on our programs and what happens for people.

Dave Coplan, executive director, Human Services Center and director, Mon Valley Providers Council

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

    No More Excuses: Child and Youth Participation is the Future of Philanthropy

    How can philanthropy and civil society build the future world we want without centering the people who will be living in it?

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • March 2023
  • Perspective

    Centering Equity through Flexible, Reliable Funding: Resourcing BIPOC Leaders

    GEO’s new publication, Centering Equity through Flexible, Reliable Funding provides grantmakers with actionable tools and insights to move toward an equity-centered approach to funding nonprofits and communities.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • June 2022
  • Perspective

    Funding Movement Building is Critical to Criminal Justice Reform

    A broad ecosystem of nonprofits, coalitions and leaders of color are working across the United States to transform the criminal legal system to one that is just and equitable.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • June 2022
  • Publication

    Centering Equity through Flexible, Reliable Funding

    With this guide, GEO seeks to reassert the value of flexible, reliable funding with an updated analysis and set of examples to illustrate how a commitment to flexible, reliable funding can support the sector to be more equitable and community driven in its practice.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • May 2022
  • GEOList Members Only

    GEOList Summary: Are any community foundations working with local governments to regrant ARP funds?

    Good morning! I’m reaching out to see if there are any community foundations working with their local governments to re-grant ARPA funds to nonprofit organizations in their service area? We have been approached by a county government in our region to manage the distribution of the ARP (American Rescue Plan) funding they have allocated to nonprofit organizations. We could see how this would fit within our purview as the region’s community foundation but have some questions about the financial and legal implications of receiving federal à county funding. Are there any community foundations in this network that have worked with their local governments in general, or more specifically, around ARP funding that could share their experience related to these questions? Thank you!

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • April 2022

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    Save the Date for GEO's 2024 National Conference held in partnership with Southern California Grantmakers from June 3 - 5, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

    • June 2024

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Perspectives on Philanthropy

Interesting thoughts and ideas circulating in the GEO community.

  • To break the nonprofit starvation cycle, funders must take the lead.

  • Article Photo

    PEAK Grantmaking

    Project Streamline

    Project Streamline focuses on helping grantmakers get the information they need, while reducing the burden of application and reporting practices on nonprofit grantseekers.

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    Philanthropy California

    Full Cost Project

    Created by funders for funders, the Full Cost Project explores what it takes for funders to develop new grantmaking practices based on what it really costs to deliver outcomes.

Related Topics

Capacity Building

Grantmakers who put the work in to provide effective capacity-building support help ensure that nonprofits have what they need to deliver on their missions over the long term.

Learn More

Strengthening Relationships

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

Learn More
Margie Obeng, Program Assistant, GEO


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