Leveraging Limited Dollars: How Grantmakers Achieve Tangible Results by Funding Policy and Community Engagement

by Lisa Ranghelli

Jan 11, 2012

The paper provides solid evidence of the impacts of foundation-funded policy advocacy, community organizing and civic engagement. It explains how these strategies create stronger communities and why they are successful. It provides a profile of many grantmakers who currently fund these types of strategies, and it offers suggestions for funders who want to start leveraging their grant dollars for maximum results.

  • Fostering effective coalitions takes time, resources and leadership in order to build organic, trusting relationships among participating organizations, establish common objectives, reach agreement on tactics and roles, and determine how decisions will be made and conflicts resolved
  • Funders can help level the playing ground so that grassroots organizing groups can act as equal partners with professional advocates
  • Granters can convene stakeholders, provide staff support to nascent efforts, and leverage relationships with donors
  • Granters taking on a convening role should be aware of inherent power dynamics
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