NNCG Knowledge Center

Inform Your Practice. Increase Your Impact.

Welcome to NNCG's Knowledge Center -- a searchable, online database of resources for and about grantmaking, produced by highly qualified and experienced philanthropy consultants. NNCG's Knowledge Center contains a wealth of reports, case studies, infographics, issue briefs, videos and more that offer ideas, research and helpful information about almost every aspect of philanthropy. Each item was authored or published by an NNCG member. NNCG constructed the Knowledge Center in partnership with Candid -- one of the most respected and trusted sources of information in the philanthropic field.
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"Yellen" from the Mountaintops

April 17, 2014

As a fan of the smart work of UltraViolet and a bridge builder across generations, I was pleased to hear how some baby boomers helped make the start-up investment to mobilize this unique internet platform. Ultraviolet has been a critical new leader addressing and mobilizing women's rights issues with fact-based online activism. Many were energized in reading the Huffintonpost.com article, "How Women Spiked Larry Summers and Made Janet Yellen the Most Powerful Person in the World,". This case study is a good example of how UltraViolet, the National Organization of Women, the Women Donors Network and a number of other invested people banded together to support women's leadership at the highest leve. The theme of women supporting each other needs a bigger spotlight and stage. This particular movement focused on creating the conditions for Janet Yellen to be nominated and then approved by Congress as the Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. This accomplishment is a testament to the ability of collaborative advocacy to cause great shifts in the dominant paradigm of our society.

Philanthropy with a Gendered Voice

February 13, 2014

Women's funds, the pillars and webbing of women's philanthropy, have been mobilizing resources by women and for women, as well as advocating and funding the pursuit of gender equity, since the mid-1990s. Recently, the women's philanthropic movement (women and smart men giving to women's rights or with a human security frame) has been more visible as Davos, the Clinton Global Initiative, The Gates Foundation annual report, among others, continue to showcase the value of "investing" in women. These conferences and organizations study and generally talk about the impact on social ills and economic indicators that result by investing in women. It may be both of interest and instructive to study the specific practices and inherent values that the women's funds have developed, collaborated around, and mobilized resources around this work.

Movement Building - What Can We Learn from Sports?

October 17, 2013

Few can deny the success of the women's sports movement. Since the passage of Title IX in 1972, the growth of girls' and women's participation in sports has been simply phenomenal. Within this movement are valuable lessons for those of us still working on issues such as reproductive justice, pay equity, legislative leadership, etc. Consider the following metaphors and practices for success.

High Functioning Teams

February 20, 2013

A high functioning staff has the consciousness, will, and integrity to act sustainably. Leaders and all team members must create the safety for people to say, "Is this the most efficient way for us to work? Are we respecting our own time and the time of our colleagues? Are we treating ourselves well so we can be vibrant ambassadors for this work?" Consider the following ideas to embrace with your team and see what changes occur in your work and your organization.

Top 10 Characteristics of an Effective Board of Directors

January 1, 2006

Details the characteristics of effective board members.

Connecting Your Vision and Values to Your Grantmaking

January 1, 2006

Being a thoughtful and wise grantmaking partner is a deliberate process. There are many important components to creating the change you want to see in the world and making the vision of your organization come to life. The eight steps presented are part of the work for any size organization to consider when embarking on grantmaking as a tool to fulfill their vision. These steps can be modified to address the organization's level of development. Smaller volunteer run or family foundations can perform the steps while utilizing many on line samples or existing tools of other organizations. Mature staffed organizations with large portfolios can either contract for some of the steps or have program staff administer and manage the process. Regardless, a review of the steps with the intent to bring the organization's values and vision to life throughout the process is always helpful. Ultimately, building a collaborative relationship between the organization and the grantee will ensure the greatest impact and success in the form of social change.

Gender Lens Investing

January 1, 2006

For years, the women's funding movement and women's funds have been creating social change by investing in women. People have been energized by the profound impact of investing in women and girls. Funders across the philanthropic spectrum including Women Moving Millions, global giants such as Nike and Goldman Sachs, and the World Bank are investing in girls and women. We know that women are key assets in building their communities and creating new pathways to a more just and sustainable world. Investing in women's education, economic welfare, health and overall well being produces powerful results that benefit families, communities and entire societies. When women become economic agents and leaders, social change accelerates and returns multiply. This is the woman effect.

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