The Most Important Lesson I’ve Learned in 25 Years of Grantmaking

It’s a strange job…giving away money. Sure, it sounds simple. People come to funders for support, we decide if the idea fits with our foundation’s mission, we vet it, perhaps we write a recommendation for our board, and our trustees then make a determination. Pretty straightforward. Pretty clear. Pretty formulaic — at least on the surface.

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Why we are Suspending Unsolicited Applications

From 30 April 2018, we will be suspending the receipt of unsolicited proposals for an initial test period of six months. We will be replacing them with an in-depth focus on one country, desk-based research and visits to meet potential grantees.

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The Dilemmas, Contradictions, and Excitements of Being a Foundation Program Officer

Let me begin by stating the obvious. I love being a foundation program officer. I’ve worked for private foundations for almost 13 years, and it has been a blast. Not only has it given me the privilege to support some of the best, brightest, and committed people in the social change space, but it has taught me humility, patience, and the ability to see the bigger picture.

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