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PEAK Grantmaking

Weekly Reads – December 19, 2019

A roundup of timely insight from the grantmaking community and beyond.

“Generosity can feel comfortable, and to me, moving toward justice means questioning and troubling that comfort in very specific and strategic ways. It means expanding what we’re comfortable doing as leaders and institutions, like finding new ways to lift up and listen to and partner with the people we fund beyond just writing a check. And in cases where we’re starting or drawn into tough conversations about injustice and inequality, it means working through them rigorously with our partners.”  [more]
—By Elizabeth Alexander, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, in Chronicle of Philanthropy

The scale and momentum of the #MeToo movement compelled the Ford Foundation to take a long, hard look in the mirror. What should be our role in responding to abuses of power within the organizations we support? In preventing them? Had we been doing enough? To provide more specific advice and insight to our program staff and grantees, we developed a body of institutional-level guidance, case studies and tools that reflect a reassessment of our efforts, both in responding to cases of discrimination, harassment, and abuse, and in taking steps to prevent these cases from happening in the first place.”  [more]
—Bess Rothenberg, Ford Foundation, in SSIR

Like monarchies, philanthropy holds power in a context in which there are very few measures of accountability. Yet, accountability and power work together to advance social transformation. Relationships of mutual accountability focus power to create a more equitable society. So philanthropy must choose whether to take the path of equity or the path of tyranny.”  [more]
—Jeanne Lewis, NCRP blog