Participatory grantmaking encompasses a range of models, methods, challenges, and insights. At its core, this approach to funding cedes decision-making power about grants to the very communities impacted by funding decisions. This special collection gathers the experience and insights of funders who have shifted power and builds on the wisdom explored in the GrantCraft guide "Deciding Together: Shifting Power and Resources through Participatory Grantmaking".

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How Youth-Led Grantmaking Benefits Young People, Their Communities, and the Philanthropic Sector

November 1, 2017

In this brief, we explore Youth Philanthropy as a model with the potential to make grantmaking more democratic, inclusive, and responsive to the needs of underserved communities. It is also a model that, if more widely supported and expanded, could contribute significantly to the preparation of sophisticated future grantmakers who share social justice values. This brief explores the landscape of youth philanthropy in the United States, providing concrete examples of best practices in youth philanthropy, particularly for teenagers. We review youth philanthropy's potential benefits for both communities and for young grantmakers themselves. We also offer recommendations to funders for how to best support youth philanthropy or how to expand and deepen their support for this growing practice. 

Supporting Inclusive Movements: Funding the Rights of Women with Disabilities

November 1, 2015

Leading advocates and women's rights donors agree that much more can and needs to be done to include women with disabilities in women's rights activism, agenda setting, and funding. This brief explores funding at the intersection of women's rights and disability rights and offers steps donors can take to ensure that their grantmaking is more inclusive of women with disabilities and to support this emerging movement.

International Scholarships for Equity in Higher Education

April 1, 2015

Discussions about achieving access and equity in higher education are often centered on debates about university admissions policies. While this focus is to be expected given the direct bearing that admissions policies have on who gains access, there are initiatives beyond the university sphere that seek to increase equity in higher education. Scholarship and fellowship programs, both public and private, impact the lives of countless individuals pursuing tertiary education, and many of these programs seek not just to provide financial support, but to achieve broader aims for the greater public good.The Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP) is one such program that sought to address educational inequality on a large scale by providing over 4,300 graduate fellowships to individuals from some of the most marginalized populations worldwide. The Institute of International Education (IIE) is carrying out a 10-year IFP Alumni Tracking Study that examines the broader impacts of IFP on its fellows and their home communities. This issue brief analyzes the role that such programs can play in promoting equity in higher education.Researchers and practitioners alike can use this brief to consider different conceptual and programmatic approaches to advancing equity in higher education using IFP as an example. The brief draws upon the work of Michele S. Moses, a philosopher of education who identifies four salient types of justification for affirmative action policies at universities. These rationales provide a conceptual framework for understanding different approaches to achieving educational equity, including those employed by IFP.