News and Insights

Funders: How Will You Lead on Leadership?

05/11/2016

Danielle Garbe, Sherwood Trust & Caroline Miceli, Satterberg Foundation | The greatest assets the social sector has are its people. Human capital is one of the most important — yet often underfunded — investments that foundations can make to ensure the success and vitality of nonprofit organizations and our communities. To understand how to make smarter investments in organizational leadership, 10 foundations committed to strengthening Washington's nonprofit sector through a Statewide Capacity Collaborative spent months asking nonprofit leaders about what's needed to further develop the skills required to lead the teams, organizations and movements making positive change in our communities. The resulting Washington State Leadership Scan is a tool for funders, in any region, to consider the needs and opportunities for investing in leadership capacity. more »

Philanthropist Forum Takes First Collective Policy Stand

03/31/2016

Ted Lord, The Giving Practice | Engaging foundations in policy and advocacy work has been a leading theme and learning edge in philanthropy for a decade. Part of the difficulty in moving these efforts forward is the level of abstraction in many of the discussions and lack of concrete examples. This month, our field gained a new example from a group of Washington and California funders focused on child welfare and juvenile justice issues. As trust and understanding has developed, they have asked each other and The Giving Practice how they might use their other forms of capital — influence, relationships, partnerships — on behalf of our most vulnerable children and families. Within 72 hours, nine members were able to sign onto a letter to Washington Gov. Jay Inslee. more »

The Secret Sauce of Building Community Philanthropy

02/08/2016

Audrey Haberman, The Giving Practice | Over the course of four years, the Building Community Philanthropy (BCP) initiative of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Pacific Northwest team has brought together 20 partners — United Ways, identity-based funds, tribal governments and community foundations — to learn together, challenge each other and shift the way they see their role in their communities. In short, to participate in a peer network that rewards honesty and authenticity while also receiving funding to test new ways of working, and transform their work in positive and meaningful ways. Ted Lord and I recently facilitated a two-day convening for this learning cohort.  We’ve noticed three key shifts that BCP has helped unlock: more »

Health, Families and Innovative Collaboration: A Field Trip to Spokane

06/15/2015

Ted Lord and Leslie Silverman, The Giving Practice | Members of the Philanthropist Forum, a collaborative of Washington and California funders focusing on child welfare issues and staffed by The Giving Practice, spent Wednesday, May 27 on an all-day site visit to Spokane hosted by Empire Health Foundation. Here's what they heard and saw. more »

Matt Krzycki (Good Side Studio)

Partnership in Action: Philanthropy Responds to the SR530 Mudslide

03/20/2015

Marie Sauter & Audrey Haberman | One year ago, on March 22, 2014, a devastating landslide hit near the town of Oso, Washington. On this somber anniversary, Philanthropy Northwest and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation would like to share a story of tremendous community resilience. We were honored to observe first-hand the roles of three of the many agencies and community members that worked closely together to meet the needs of people affected by the mudslide. more »