Participatory Grantmaking 101

What is Participatory Grantmaking?

Participatory grantmaking cedes decision-making power about funding— including the strategy and criteria behind those decisions—to the very communities that funders aim to serve.

There is growing consensus that this process needs to also include monitoring and evaluation, and ultimately should expand beyond grantmaking into all aspects of funder organizations including governance, operations and finance.

Materials for Beginners

Foundational Resources

Adjacent Movements

There are many movements within philanthropy that overlap and intersect with participatory grantmaking. We find that when communities make decisions they often utilize trust based processes and deploy flexible funding because they understand the benefits of using these methods.

Trust Based Philanthropy

This movement believes philanthropy will be more strategic, rewarding, and impactful if funders approach their relationships with grantee partners from a place of trust and collaboration rather than compliance and control. They are working to create mutual accountability between funders and nonprofits.

Learn more on their website

Funding for Real Change

Advocating for multi-year, unrestricted and flexible funding practices, this website offers a spectrum of practices and resources that vary in flexibility: starting with increasing indirect cost coverage, all the way to multi-year flexible funding. Their goal is to move grantmaking further towards equitable and impactful practices that disrupt the nonprofit starvation cycle.

Learn more on their website

Community Centric Fundraising

Community-Centric Fundraising is a movement to evolve how fundraising is done in the nonprofit sector. Its goal is to support fundraisers and other nonprofit professionals to re-examine every fundraising philosophy and practice they have been taught, engage in vigorous ongoing conversations, and explore doing fundraising in ways that reduce harm and further social justice.

Learn more on their website

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