With Momentum Building, a Foundation Zeroes in on Criminal Justice Reform

With Momentum Building, a Foundation Zeroes in on Criminal Justice Reform

Justice reform has long been part of the Public Welfare Foundation’s portfolio. But with political winds shifting and new openings for progress, it plans to focus most of its grantmaking in this area, starting with new local-level work in Washington D.C.

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When Eagles Hatch: Native Americans in Philanthropy and Native Youth Activism

When Eagles Hatch: Native Americans in Philanthropy and Native Youth Activism

A small cadre of foundations and nonprofits has been expanding efforts to improve understanding and funding for Native -related causes. One important focus is fueling Native youth activism, work that has been been picking up steam in recent years.

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Presumed Innocent? A Funder Steps Up Its Push Against a Deeply Unfair Pretrial Justice System

Presumed Innocent? A Funder Steps Up Its Push Against a Deeply Unfair Pretrial Justice System

Much of America has a two-tiered system that allows affluent defendants to buy their freedom before trial, while poorer people often languish in jail. In its latest move to change that, Arnold Ventures just launched an ambitious new partnership for pretrial justice reform.

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Why Not You? A Star NFL Quarterback Aims to Empower Youth

Why Not You? A Star NFL Quarterback Aims to Empower Youth

Star NFL quarterback Russell Wilson has emerged as a philanthropist in recent years with a focus on expanding the horizons of youth, and is now steering his foundation with his wife, singer Ciara. What’s next for the young celebrity couple’s giving?

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Coding Behind Bars: How Some Funders Want to Prepare Inmates for Life on the Outside

Coding Behind Bars: How Some Funders Want to Prepare Inmates for Life on the Outside

With over 600,000 people released from prison every year, reentry challenges are drawing more attention from philanthropy. One nonprofit in this space that’s teaching coding to inmates has found some powerful allies, including the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.

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Getting Proactive: A Tech Giver’s Journey to More Strategic Giving

Getting Proactive: A Tech Giver’s Journey to More Strategic Giving

Tech entrepreneur Mark Vadon’s foundation once gave reactively to local causes in the Seattle area. Now, it’s laser-focused on empowering Native American communities. We get the inside story of how this grantmaker stepped up its game.

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Focusing on Pivotal Moments, a Foundation Works to Help Girls and Women Avoid the Sex Trade

Focusing on Pivotal Moments, a Foundation Works to Help Girls and Women Avoid the Sex Trade

NoVo has long been a leader in the fight against sex trafficking. Now, with a new grantmaking program, the foundation is looking to close on-ramps and create exit ramps for the girls and women involved in trafficking and the sex trade within the U.S.

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In an Era of Both Gains and Fear for LGBTQ Communities, Arcus Embraces a New Strategy

In an Era of Both Gains and Fear for LGBTQ Communities, Arcus Embraces a New Strategy

The movement for LGBTQ rights has evolved dramatically in recent years, in ways good and bad. To keep up with these shifts, a top funder in this space is taking a new approach. We get an inside look at where Arcus’ grantmaking is heading.

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“Space to Lead.” Behind a Historic Gift for Jewish Girls’ Leadership

“Space to Lead.” Behind a Historic Gift for Jewish Girls’ Leadership

The international Jewish teen organization BBYO recently landed its largest gift ever from the Chicago industrialist Ted Perlman and his wife Harriette. The donation is another sign of rising interest in empowering girls and the backstory here goes back decades.

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Closing the Gap: Behind a Longtime Corporate STEM Funder’s New Work on Women and Girls

Closing the Gap: Behind a Longtime Corporate STEM Funder’s New Work on Women and Girls

The IT company Cognizant launched a foundation last year as part of its efforts to bolster STEM skills in the U.S. It recently started grantmaking and appointed an executive director. A focus on girls and women has figured prominently in its early moves.

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Changing the Narrative and Building Power: A Muslim American Fund Takes the Long View

Changing the Narrative and Building Power: A Muslim American Fund Takes the Long View

Rapid response funding will always be necessary for a community that often finds itself under political attack. But the Pillars Fund wants to go beyond that, changing how American Muslims are seen and building capacity from the ground up.

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Universal Representation: Behind a Public-Private Partnership Effort to Defend Immigrants

Universal Representation: Behind a Public-Private Partnership Effort to Defend Immigrants

Providing vulnerable immigrants with legal representation dramatically decreases their chances of deportation. With the support of top funders, the Vera Institute’s Safety and Fairness for Everyone Network cultivates local jurisdictions to make that a reality in more places.

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An Actress Looks to Break the Silence on Black Mental Health With a New Foundation

An Actress Looks to Break the Silence on Black Mental Health With a New Foundation

Negative perceptions around mental illness and a lack of quality mental healthcare are major problems in black communities. Taraji P. Henson, an acclaimed actress with family experience in this realm, recently launched a foundation to take on these issues.

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Among Regional Foundations, Early Childhood Commands Growing Attention

Among Regional Foundations, Early Childhood Commands Growing Attention

Even as national funders step up their giving for child development and learning, a lot of the new action is happening locally, with regional foundations focusing more resources on the very youngest kids. We look at emerging initiatives in Texas and Montana.

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A Closer Look at a New Women-Led, Black-Focused Giving Circle in Chicago

A Closer Look at a New Women-Led, Black-Focused Giving Circle in Chicago

The giving circle movement has been growing fast in recent years, drawing in new kinds of donors. A case in point is an effort on the South Side of Chicago that describes itself as a “fierce group of women paving a path of investment into women-of-color-led community initiatives.”

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Behind a New Initiative to Reform Parole and Probation Nationwide

Behind a New Initiative to Reform Parole and Probation Nationwide

Too often, the gains made by former prisoners in creating new lives for themselves risk being washed away by inflexible systems of parole and probation. With 4.5 million Americans under such supervision, we look at what two foundations are doing to advance reform.

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Stand Together: The Koch-Backed Anti-Poverty Group Starting off 2019 with a Bang

Stand Together: The Koch-Backed Anti-Poverty Group Starting off 2019 with a Bang

Stand Together, an anti-poverty organization backed by the conservative Koch network, plans to release $10 to $15 million in grants this month. What’s driving this giving by leading donors on the right and where have grants gone so far?

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What Went Wrong With This Foundation-Backed Effort to Lower Jail Populations?

What Went Wrong With This Foundation-Backed Effort to Lower Jail Populations?

While there’s a lot of funding action around criminal justice reform, grantmaking efforts don’t always go as planned. A bail reform push that misfired in Washington State provides some important lessons for foundations and government agencies alike.

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