How to Make Grants to Fiscally Sponsored Projects

Many private foundations and government agencies have become comfortable making grants to support fiscally sponsored projects (FSPs). Over the past decade, fiscal sponsorship has become an increasingly familiar structure and more widely recognized as a legitimate option for supporting charitable projects. But there are still many misconceptions about how fiscal sponsorship works and how funders […]

Affirmative Action Plans—A Potentially Important Safeguard for Race-Based Grantmaking

Anti-discrimination laws such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866 preclude organizations from making decisions on the basis of race or other protected characteristics in a variety of situations such as funding, programming and employment. See our previous posts on Title VII and Section 1981. […]

Anti-Discrimination Laws – Section 1981

Nonprofits must be aware of and compliant with applicable anti-discrimination laws. In an earlier post, we discussed Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This post focuses on Section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, codified in Title 42 of the U.S. Code. Contrast to Title VII Like Title VII, Section 1981 […]

Traditional Grantmaking Procedures: Are They Really All That Necessary?

I attended a seminar hosted by Exponent Philanthropy where the presenters discussed a unique approach to grantmaking that they referred to as “Catalytic Grantmaking.” The presenters suggested that many of the steps in what they identified as the “traditional grantmaking” process could be ignored to produce a quicker and more dynamic grantmaking style, but as […]

Grantmaking by Public Charities

Despite many people’s belief that grantmaking is restricted to entities known as foundations, public charities can and many do engage in grantmaking. This post focuses on grantmaking by public charities and generally does not address the more restrictive rules applicable to private foundations. Terminology Part of the confusion lies with how we colloquially refer to […]

Lobbying & Grants to Non-501(c)(3) Entities: Know The Rules

Although many people think otherwise, 501(c)(3) public charities are in fact permitted to engage to lobbying activities, provided such activities are an insubstantial amount of their overall activities. They are also generally permitted to fund any work of other entities, including non-public charities, that they could engage in themselves, including lobbying activities.  However, when a […]

Foundations for the Common Good

Caring to Change, an independent project conducted in collaboration with the Aspen Institute's Program on Philanthropy and Social Innovation, earlier this year released Foundations for the Common Good, a report written by Mark Rosenman on how grantmaking can be more effective if focused on the broader goal of advancing the "Common Good."  Dr. Rosenman sought the input of […]