RE: Philanthropy Blog

Monday, February 25, 2013 - 8:06am

I attended a great panel this morning. It was called “The Future of Philanthropy and Development in the Pursuit of the Human Well-Being: An Update on the Bellagio Initiative.” The presenters were Asif Saleh, director of the BRAC Centre; Fabrice Serfati, managing director and CFO of IGNIA; Neelam Makhijani, chief executive of Resource Alliance; and Pesh Framjee; head of National Not for Profit Group, Crowe Clark Whitehill. It was moderated by Heather Grady, vice president of foundation initiatives at The Rockefeller Foundation.

Friday, February 22, 2013 - 5:13pm

In mid-March, following the news that Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, a warlord from the DRC, had been convicted of war crimes by the International Criminal Court (ICC), activists lauded the long-awaited verdict, calling on the ICC and the Congolese government to implement the arrest warrants of others who are also suspected of serious war crimes committed in the DRC. These calls for justice were met with hostility by warlords and their supporters, including some from within the DRC’s armed forces. Activists who have long worked on campaigns to bring justice to their communities received messages to stop meddling—and veiled threats of violence—from powerful actors.

Friday, February 22, 2013 - 4:59pm

There’s an African proverb that says “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” That’s true in life and true in philanthropy. Grantmakers are dedicated to working with nonprofits and community organizations to address the toughest challenges. There’s no doubt that the past several years have required grantees to be creative and nimble to stay afloat, and effectively serve the growing need in their communities. Grantmaker behavior has a tremendous impact on an organization’s ability to respond, adapt, and thrive.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - 4:04pm

Did you know illnesses resulting from water contamination are the leading cause of human sickness and death worldwide? In just the past decade, more children have died due to a lack of access to safe drinking water than all the people who have died in battle since World War II.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - 3:26pm

I landed in Cairo earlier today a few hours ago expecting to see significant changes. In many ways everything has changed yet on the drive from the airport to the hotel in Zamalek to across the Nile, Cairo is still the same. The wonderful energy, the crazy traffic with cars moving in a slow dance – it was Friday evening after all and people were out and about enjoying the beautiful evening. Traffic was snarled in some places with the Presidential campaign in full swing and supporters out in the streets waving signs and banners in support of their candidates. For life in a very big city it seems very normal. Yet for many their whole world has been changed completely. Many of us hope for the better but not everyone is that sure.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - 2:58pm

The International Youth Foundation recently released a report that looks at the growing education and social challenges facing youth around the world. Commissioned by Microsoft, it underlines the emergence of an worldwide opportunity divide among young people.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - 2:53pm

At the Council on Foundations Global Grantmaking Institute (GGI), participants grappled with the fact that wicked problems do not have single-sourced solutions, nor is there a clearly demarcated path leading to success in overcoming these problems. Our esteemed faculty gently but ever so consistently prodded us to accept that despite our best intentions as grantmakers, we will fail. This was no easy task in a room full of determined individuals representing foundations with mission statements that express the intention to end poverty and alleviate suffering.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 4:28pm

A few years ago, a Guatemalan organization called the Women’s Association for the Development of Sacatepéquez (AFEDES), an International Development Exchange (IDEX) grant partner since 2005, discovered something troubling: Its programs were not making much of an impact.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 4:23pm

At the Council on Foundations’ Global Grantmaking Institute (GGI) this week, participants are examining the essentials in the effective global grantmaker’s toolkit: our hearts, minds, stomachs, and ears.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 - 2:06pm

Roughly 80 percent of the coastal mangroves around the coastal Colombian town of Tumaco have been lost through deforestation, urban development, and contamination from frequent oil spills. The area is a hub for industrial storage and transportation of petroleum, and during most of the last 15 years, the remaining mangroves were preferred hideaways for armed groups to stash drugs or even bodies.