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What We Care About


No organization has the resources to address the complex issues facing our communities. Working together gives us an opportunity to create real change.


of grantmakers believe it is important to coordinate resources and actions with other funders

Collaboration takes place in many forms (like networks, movements, collective impact) and in many funding possibilities (such as co-funding or pooled funds). But regardless of the specific details, one thing is always true — if we want to go far, we have to go together.

Collaboration requires everyone to be honest, trusting and humble. It means being open about what our strengths are as well as what knowledge and expertise our partners bring to the table. And once we understand what role we should play, solving complex challenges together becomes possible. Funding collaboration successfully and being productive partners requires that we do the hard work to set ourselves up for success. But doing so means we’re able to make faster progress on the issues we care about most.

For us, collaboration is about joining with others to try to move the needle, whether on issues such as improving the social, emotional and physical well-being of our youth or ensuring that more kids graduate and go to college.

Cheryl Walker, board chair of the Deaconess Foundation

Helpful Tools and Resources

Stay informed of the emerging trends and promising practices from the field of philanthropy through GEO’s publications and research.

  • Perspective

    What makes collaboration effective? And what doesn’t?

    CLIPF is a supportive community where grantmakers can identify best practices and recommendations for creating the organizational conditions that support nonprofit success – in collaboration with like-minded peers. Shari Silberstein offers reflections on why connection and community are important to grantmaking effectiveness.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • September 2023
  • Perspective

    No More Excuses: Child and Youth Participation is the Future of Philanthropy

    How can philanthropy and civil society build the future world we want without centering the people who will be living in it?

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • March 2023
  • GEOList Members Only

    GEOList Summary: Are any community foundations working with local governments to regrant ARP funds?

    Good morning! I’m reaching out to see if there are any community foundations working with their local governments to re-grant ARPA funds to nonprofit organizations in their service area? We have been approached by a county government in our region to manage the distribution of the ARP (American Rescue Plan) funding they have allocated to nonprofit organizations. We could see how this would fit within our purview as the region’s community foundation but have some questions about the financial and legal implications of receiving federal à county funding. Are there any community foundations in this network that have worked with their local governments in general, or more specifically, around ARP funding that could share their experience related to these questions? Thank you!

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • April 2022
  • Perspective

    Humility, Listening and Connectedness: How to Build Partner Relationships Rooted in Equity

    In this second, follow-up piece of Humility, Listening and Connectedness: Building Partner Relationships that Drive Equitable Practice, we’ll explore how humility, listening and connectedness play key roles in building new partnerships that center equity.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • February 2022
  • Perspective

    Humility, Listening and Connectedness: Building Partner Relationships that Drive Equitable Practice

    Maria Azuri unpacks how humility, listening and connectedness are central to building partner relationships that drive equitable grantmaking practice.

    • Grantmakers for Effective Organizations
    • September 2021

Upcoming Events

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    2024 National Conference

    Save the Date for GEO's 2024 National Conference held in partnership with Philanthropy California from May 20 - 22, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.

    • May 2024

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No matter the outcome we are working toward, our institutions and systems were built to advantage some but not all — and data shows that inequities persist to this day. These inequities become more apparent when we take race into account.

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Strengthening Relationships

When we build trust and tap the knowledge and perspective of nonprofits and the communities we serve, we create better solutions.

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