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Grassroots Grantmakers

Grassroots Grantmakers
We strengthen and connect funders who strengthen and connect residents where they live.

Grassroots Grantmakers is a network of place-based funders in the United States and Canada who are working from a “we begin with residents” perspective – supporting active citizenship and building civic capacity at the block level in their communities with scale-appropriate grants, a highly relational style of grantmaking, and a learning orientation. Funders in our network are working to strengthen resident-controlled associations, and help people that come together because of a shared interest in improving their block, their neighborhood, or their community to be a stronger voice for change and community vitality.

Grassroots Grantmakers serves as a locus for learning and a community of practice – serving to strengthen and connect funders who strengthen and connect residents where they live. Our work is made possible by the generous support of a growing number of contributing members and grants from funders who believe in grassroots grantmaking as an essential component of effective place-based philanthropy.

Learning how funders can effectively utilize small grants as a tool for grassroots grantmaking is a cornerstone of our work, but not our only interest. We are also interested in learning about how funders utilize other tools such as convening, technical assistance, training, and leadership development to support bottom-up community building. We are particularly interested in how funders are connecting their grassroots grantmaking to a larger community building or social change agenda.

Participants in our network support social change at the grassroots by:
  • Addressing local priorities – helping residents tackle the challenges they define as most important
  • Valuing civic engagement – helping people practice and grow the habit of citizen involvement
  • Building community – helping individuals come together to improve the quality of life where they live
We work to support our members in this mission via:
  • Information – case studies, program descriptions and success factors, sample guidelines and templates, the latest knowledge as well as news from the field
  • Relationships – peer learning and contact with leaders in this practice area
  • Assistance – timely topical calls on hot issues and shared interests, as well as individual advice for start-up and established programs