From Big Bird to Big Grants: How Sesame Workshop Became a Fundraising Juggernaut

From Big Bird to Big Grants: How Sesame Workshop Became a Fundraising Juggernaut

The 50-year-old story of Sesame Workshop is about a singular focus manifested through an array of evolving approaches. Judging by the two $100 million gifts it’s landed in recent years, the organization’s not-so-secret sauce is really working.

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Think Big: Behind a Push to Unlock Billions in New “Catalytic” Capital for Global Development

Think Big: Behind a Push to Unlock Billions in New “Catalytic” Capital for Global Development

Achieving the U.N.’s ambitious Sustainable Development Goals requires unlocking vast amounts of private capital. MacArthur and two other funders have a plan to do exactly that—and take impact investing to a whole new level.

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Billionaires vs. the Blob. Behind a Challenge to the "Forever War" Foreign Policy Consensus

Billionaires vs. the Blob. Behind a Challenge to the "Forever War" Foreign Policy Consensus

Philanthropy has been largely passive as endless wars and soaring defense spending have diverted resources away from pressing domestic challenges. Now, in a striking collaboration, George Soros and Charles Koch aim to disrupt the status quo.

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The Personal Journey That Moved the Gates Foundation to Focus on Gender Equality

The Personal Journey That Moved the Gates Foundation to Focus on Gender Equality

In recent years, the Gates Foundation has emerged as one of the most important funders of women’s empowerment. Melinda Gates has driven that dramatically stepped-up giving, motivated by experiences she describes in her moving new book.

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Data Drive: Behind the Gates Foundation's Latest Big Investment to Reduce Child Mortality

Data Drive: Behind the Gates Foundation's Latest Big Investment to Reduce Child Mortality

More than 5 million children under age five die every year, and Gates is hungry for better data on what’s killing them—and how to save lives. It’s now given over $250 million to an NGO on the forefront of this quest. But is more data really needed?

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To Bolster Access to Water and Sanitation, These Funders Are Betting on a Systems Approach

To Bolster Access to Water and Sanitation, These Funders Are Betting on a Systems Approach

Water and sanitation have long been a focus for global grantmakers, but the approach has often been piecemeal, with projects failing after donors have moved on. In an interview, two leading WASH funders discuss their quest for a better approach.

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Beyond Band-Aids: For a Funder Collaborative Taking on Global Poverty, It's All About Changing Systems

Beyond Band-Aids: For a Funder Collaborative Taking on Global Poverty, It's All About Changing Systems

Backed by billionaire donors and the Rockefeller Foundation, Co-Impact launched in 2017 aiming to take a collaborative and systemic approach to global development. With grantmaking now underway, how are these lofty ambitions playing out?

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Dept. of Fine Print: Who Benefits Most When Pharmaceutical Companies Donate Product?

Dept. of Fine Print: Who Benefits Most When Pharmaceutical Companies Donate Product?

Pharma companies donate billions in drugs, with benefits to poor people at home and abroad—but at a substantial cost to the U.S. Treasury. We dig into the tax rules and economics that surround this kind of giving to see who’s really coming out ahead.

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To Guide Hilton's Global Giving, CEO Peter Laugharn is Drawing on Lessons He Learned in Mali

To Guide Hilton's Global Giving, CEO Peter Laugharn is Drawing on Lessons He Learned in Mali

Since taking the helm of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Peter Laugharn has streamlined its global programs and also sought to send more grants to community-based nonprofits in Africa. We talk to Laugharn about his vision for “localizing philanthropy.”

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As a Key Leader Exits, What is Next for the Hewlett Foundation’s Global Grantmaking?

As a Key Leader Exits, What is Next for the Hewlett Foundation’s Global Grantmaking?

Hewlett is among the top U.S. funders of global development, and its director of this work, Ruth Levine, has been an influential advocate for women’s empowerment. With Levine moving on, we take stock of the global program’s hits and misses—and what may lie ahead.

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Top Funders and NGOs Think Empowering Women Farmers Can Reduce Hunger. Are They Right?

Top Funders and NGOs Think Empowering Women Farmers Can Reduce Hunger. Are They Right?

CARE’s ambitious initiative to boost women in agriculture in developing countries, backed by the PepsiCo Foundation, is based on an unproven theory of change. It’s the latest example of a funder making a big, risky bet on the potential of gender equity.

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India’s Billionaires are Embracing Philanthropy. But Will They Address its Deepest Problems?

India’s Billionaires are Embracing Philanthropy. But Will They Address its Deepest Problems?

India’s robust economic growth has created a new era of philanthropy that’s becoming more structured and collaborative. But top billionaire donors still tend to play it safe and avoid tackling the systemic drivers of poverty and injustice.

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How This Foundation Got Behind a Push to Bring Soccer Fields to Poor Kids Around the World

How This Foundation Got Behind a Push to Bring Soccer Fields to Poor Kids Around the World

Global nonprofit love.fútbol engages communities to create soccer pitches, and recently received its first-ever major gift from a foundation. Here’s how the two organizations got in sync to advance their shared mission of helping children.

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Inside a Nonprofit That Supports Environmental Journalists Around the World

Inside a Nonprofit That Supports Environmental Journalists Around the World

In countries struggling with environmental threats like deforestation, the news media—and robust, reliable local reporting—can be the only way to draw attention to what’s happening. Backing such work in the mission of the Earth Journalism Network.

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Who Is Funding Solutions to the Root Causes of Mexican and Central American Migration?

Who Is Funding Solutions to the Root Causes of Mexican and Central American Migration?

Crime, violence, and deep poverty continue to push Mexicans and Central Americans to flee northward. Several top U.S. foundations have been working on these challenges for years. What are they doing? And what’s been the impact?

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When Men Are Advocates: An Energy Giant Funds Training in Gender Equity

When Men Are Advocates: An Energy Giant Funds Training in Gender Equity

More funders are getting behind the idea that men need to champion and support gender equity. A recent grant from the Chevron Corp. will fund a top nonprofit’s growing work to engage “men as change agents” in the workplace.

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Ten Considerations for Human Rights Funders Engaging with Social Movements in 2019

Ten Considerations for Human Rights Funders Engaging with Social Movements in 2019

In the face of rising attacks on democratic institutions and civil organizations worldwide, it’s becoming more important than ever to support social movements. But according to two veterans in this space, funders need to change how they provide such support.

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As China Rises, its New Billionaire Class is Turning to Philanthropy

As China Rises, its New Billionaire Class is Turning to Philanthropy

After a historic surge in wealth and sweeping legal changes, some of China’s wealthiest business leaders are turning to large-scale giving. But figuring out what donors are up to isn’t easy given a lack of reliable information on Chinese philanthropy.

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