Study Indicates Slowdown in Social Justice Philanthropy
|February 15, 2012||Posted by M. P. under Management, Philanthropy||
A new report on grantmaking and the recession, The Impact of the 2008 Financial Crisis on the Field of Social Justice Philanthropy, by Sara K. Gould, an Atlantic Philanthropies Senior Fellow at the Foundation Center, warns of increasingly difficulty in securing funding for social justice causes and organizations.
The researchers examined giving data from foundations across the United States with histories of philanthropy in the area of social justice; the sample represented over $760 million in giving, or 25 percent of all social justice philanthropy in 2009. Highlights of the study include:
- The majority of foundations responded that they faced the economic downtown with plans to maintain their levels of grantmaking, even in the face of shrinking assets. Still, in 2009, grantmaking decreased to below 2007 levels, with small foundations experiencing the largest drop.
- Foundations with less than $50 million in assets have been the most seriously depleted by the downturn and will continue to struggle for the next few years. Nonprofits that may rely heavily on these smaller, local funders for support may be greatly affected by this development.
- Barring high performance in investment returns, social justice grants and funding will likely not return to 2008 levels before (or by) 2015.
This report is full of valuable information on social justice giving trends and the strategic maneuverings of foundations as the recession hit, and is available for download at the Foundation Center website.