Surdna Foundation Announces Refined Program Strategies

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Surdna Foundation Announces Refined Program Strategies

The Surdna Foundation announced today refined strategies for its grantmaking programs, intended to reflect the Foundation’s belief that racial justice must underpin social justice. 

These refined strategies are the culmination of a yearlong process of introspection to ensure the Foundation’s work is as relevant and effective as possible, and they explicitly articulate the changes the Foundation seeks to achieve.

As one of the oldest family foundations in the country, Surdna is dedicated to ensuring its strategies foster a culture of learning and reflect the Foundation’s deep commitment to the values of justice, equity, and inclusion. 

“Our ongoing commitment to learning requires constantly examining our own assumptions and having continuous conversations with organizations on the frontlines tackling society’s biggest challenges,” said Don Chen, incoming president of the Surdna Foundation.

These shifts come at an important moment in the Foundation’s journey – 10 years after announcing its shift to an explicitly social justice approach to philanthropy, and six years after launching its current program strategies. Surdna sees this as an opportunity to further the Foundation’s commitment to working together with its partners to amplify the power that exists within communities to drive change.

“We understand that our dollars are limited and the needs of marginalized communities are great, and it is out of deep respect for those communities that we are resolved to spending our funds in ways we believe they can have the most impact,” said Peter Benedict II, board chair.

Surdna believes it can have the greatest impact in achieving a more just and sustainable society by addressing the historical and structural racial inequities at the root of the deeply embedded challenges that communities face across America.

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