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Funder Collaboratives across the Country

Publication date: 
June, 2011

We are in the process of researching “excellent” examples of funder collaboratives taking place across the states that we can share with our members. We are looking for innovative and/or successful examples that we can use to help our members explore options within Arizona. If you have an example or two, please send me some information regarding the collaboration (pdf files, links to info, etc).

~Tom Torretta, Arizona Grantmakers Forum



Workforce Development Collaboratives

The National Fund for Workforce Solutions has a unique approach to workforce development. They provide grants to regional funder collaboratives that organize public-private partnerships to prepare workers and job seekers for careers and they do it with the deep involvement of employers. The model they've created is locally driven. To learn more about where the National Fund is working, click here.

Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers

Neighborhood Collaboratives

Baltimore Neighborhood Collaborative

Since 1996, the Baltimore Neighborhood Collaborative (BNC) has invested over $7,000,000 through grantmaking and other activities to support the revitalization of Baltimore neighborhoods. Click here to read the tenth anniversary report.

Arizona Grantmakers Forum

Educare Arizona

Each Educare center is a private-public collaboration that brings together a philanthropic leader or leaders to spearhead the capital campaign, a programmatic provider of Head Start and Early Head Start services to implement the core components of the Educare model, and a public school or district to provide land and other supports. Educare Arizona is supported by a collaboration of stakeholders and visionary leaders working together to ensure healthy development for all of Arizona's children. 

Homelessness and Hunger Funders Collaborative - 2011

The goal of the Homelessness and Hunger Funders Collaborative is to create a collaboration amongst funders to provide resources in an accelerated manner to key agencies/programs and activities that primarily serve those in need of emergency shelter and/or food. In March of 2011, funders in the collaborative pooled together a total of $1,025,000 that was distributed to 15 Arizona nonprofits.

Neighborhood Development Collaborative - Place-Based Funding

The Phoenix Neighborhood Development Collaborative (PNDC) is a collaboration of private foundations, local corporations and government agencies who share a common purpose of improving economic and social conditions in Phoenix's low income neighborhoods.

The Summer Youth Program Fund

The Summer Youth Program Fund is a collaborative grantmaking effort among local funders who support, or are interested in supporting, agencies that provide summer programming for Maricopa County youth. The purpose of the SYPF is to supplement existing programs in order to enrich, enhance and expand summer programs for children and youth.

The Arizona Cultural Data Project

The Arizona Cultural Data Project (Arizona CDP) is a powerful online management tool designed to strengthen arts and cultural organizations. Arts and cultural organizations enter financial, programmatic and operational data into a standardized online form and can then use the CDP to produce a variety of reports designed to help increase management capacity, identify strengths and challenges and inform decision-making. They can also generate reports to be included as part of the application processes to participating grantmakers.

Colorado Association of Funders

Homelessness Collaboratives

The Denver's Road Home Funder Collaborative is a network of more than 20 foundations and corporations in Colorado that have co-invested in the Denver's Road Home Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness. Activities include:

  • Knowledge sharing
  • Co-investment on housing first programs in the metro Denver area
  • Support the implementation of Denver's plan to end homelessness by 2015

Council of New Jersey Grantmakers

Public Policy/Advocacy Collaboratives

Facing Our Future

New Jersey government at all levels (state, county, local and school districts) is in crisis. The way it raises and spends money cannot be sustained. These are key findings of an effort called Facing Our Future, which was coordinated by the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers and spearheaded by a Leadership Group composed of former government executives and public servants representing all sides of the political spectrum.

Donors Forum

Council on Foundations and Donors Forum Symposium on Public-Philanthropic Partnerships: Examples of Collaboration and Leadership (PDF below)

The Donors Forum and Council on Foundations created this document that offers 12 examples of collaboration and leadership in the Chicago area.

The collaboratives include:

  • Child Development and Education
  • Foundation of Learning Climate Change
  • Chicago Climate Action Plan Workforce Development
  • Chicago LEADS (Leading Economic Advancement, Development, and Sustainability Teacher Preparation Reform
  • Chicago Teacher Pipeline Partnership 2010 Census
  • Count Me In Transformation of Food Production and Distribution
  • Fresh Taste Public Housing and Workforce Development
  • Opportunity Chicago Addressing the Foreclosure Crisis
  • Regional Homeownership Preservation Initiative (RHOPI) Water Quality and Ecosystem Restoration
  • Great Lakes Healing Our Waters Coalition Climate Change, Workforce Development, and Economic Development
  • Chicagoland Green Collar Jobs Initiative Public Housing Transformation
  • The Partnership for New Communities Arts Education
  • Chicago Arts Education Collaborative

Donors Forum of Wisconsin

Child Welfare Collaboratives

The Child Welfare Philanthropy Group

The Child Welfare Philanthropy Group (CWPG) was formed in response to concerns by funders and nonprofits for more transparency, accountability, advocacy and support of the various systems serving children and families. Since its inception in 2000, CWPG has funded projects addressing policy issues and needs in health, education, early childhood and workforce development.

Workforce Development Collaboratives

Milwaukee Area Workforce Funding Alliance (MAWFA) - Donors Forum of Wisconsin

MAWFA has supported over 2,500 individuals in training and services engaging over 120 employers that have aligned over $16 million annually with 25 public and private funders.

Maine Philanthropy Center

Environmental Collaboratives

Environmental Funders Network

The Environmental Funders Network (EFN) is a joint program between the Maine Community Foundation and Maine Philanthropy Center that helps to sustain Maine's natural environment and strengthen its connection to Maine's people, communities, and quality of place.

Ohio Grantmakers Forum

Education Collaboratives

Education Initiative

OGF launched its education initiative in 2005 to help members become more effective education grantmakers by better understanding public education in the state. Read the report “Beyond Tinkering: Creating Real Opportunities for Today's Learners and for Generations of Ohioans to Come” (see below).

Human Services and Healthcare Collaboratives

Strategic Restructuring of Human Services Nonprofits

The Human Services Strategic Restructuring Pilot Project in Cuyahoga County brought together a group of 18 grantmaker organizations motivated by a common desire to offer struggling nonprofits with support "beyond a grant check." Read the summary report "The Human Services Strategic Restructuring Pilot Project: Transforming Nonprofits in Cuyahoga County, Ohio".

OGF Members Form Coalition to Help State Implement ACA

To aid foundations active or interested in health reform-related grantmaking, understand the new law and explore collaboration on implementation, the Saint Luke's Foundation and The George Gund Foundation joined forces to convene with funders from around the state.

Philanthropy Northwest

Education Collaboratives

Chalkboard Project

Launched in early 2004, the Chalkboard Project is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit organization with the goal of helping to unite Oregonians to make our K-12 public schools among the nation's best.

San Diego Grantmakers

Child Welfare Collaboratives

Child Welfare Funders

The Child Welfare Funders (CWF) has been meeting since 2006 to learn more about the child welfare system and issues facing the children and families it serves. Read more.

Homelessness Collaboratives

Homelessness Working Group

Since 2003, the Homelessness Working Group (HWG) has focused on addressing the causes and solutions to homelessness in San Diego County. The purpose of HWG is to prevent and reduce homelessness throughout the county by enabling funders and other stakeholders to have greater impact through advocacy, collaboration and education.

Neighborhood Collaboratives

Neighborhood Funders Collaborative

In 2001, several members of San Diego Grantmakers interested in pursuing place-based funding formed the San Diego Neighborhood Funders (SDNF) collaboration. They decided to focus their work in the Diamond community, an area comprised of 10 neighborhoods in southeast San Diego that has among the lowest average household income and for decades lacked sustainable private sector investment.

Parolee Assistance Collaboratives

Coming Home to Stay

In 2006, several San Diego Grantmakers members formed a learning group that spent more than a year working with law enforcement and corrections officials to research prisoner rehabilitation and reentry. The group decided to focus their efforts in City Heights and the Diamond, and dubbed the effort “Coming Home to Stay” (CHTS).

Workforce Development Collaboratives

Workforce Funders Collaborative

The San Diego Workforce Funders Collaborative (SDWFC) was founded in 2006 as a public/private partnership of philanthropic foundations, employers, and public workforce development agencies to identify the region's workforce needs, create coordinated and financed solutions, and monitor regional success.