Go to Top

Blog

Creating a Culture of Learning through Evaluation

By Rachel Mosher-Williams, Mariam Mansury and Raffie Parke

All too often, the phrase “measurement and evaluation” elicits fear in the social sector. Evaluation is often done only when stakes are high, such as when a grantmaker uses results to decide whether to continue funding an initiative or when a funder requires “evidence of impact” before making or increasing grant funding. As a result, organizations often focus evaluations on binary

Read More

Strategies for Sustainability in Uncertain Times

By Megan Coolidge, John Kern and Amy Farley

In a year filled with uncertainty, many social sector organizations are asking how they might successfully sustain their impact in the coming years. Changes to the federal budget are expected to increase need among vulnerable populations in the U.S. while simultaneously reducing federal funding for nonprofits delivering critical services. At the same time, individual activism is rising and the line between donor,

Read More

A Bolder Role

Photo, courtesy of Change Philanthropy Facebook page, depicts a plenary discussion at the 2017 Unity Summit.

While many stories from the Unity Summit in New Orleans affected me, the ones that most stuck with me were from Dr. Denese Shervington, a psychiatrist who works with kids in the New Orleans juvenile justice system. She talked about the trauma experienced by the kids, mostly black and brown, in the system, and the need for us as individuals and as a society to see the hurt and

Read More

Small Acts from the Field

As we embark on another school year, I am reminded that my kids will take countless small acts this year that will help shape who they are and who they become. Like the process of learning, our social change work is a lifelong journey made of hundreds of small acts that shape the kind of change we make—incremental or transformational—and ultimately propel us forward to make big progress.

Small

Read More

In Collaboration, the Means Matter

How we collaborate matters greatly. A few years ago, I supported a national foundation in bringing together a group of state-based funders to address educational inequities in their state. Though the goal was clear, the national foundation’s intentions and agenda were not as transparent. After a few intimate convenings, one brave regional funder asked the national foundation the question many had been wondering: “Why did you bring us together?”

Read More