Trust-Based Philanthropy Cohort

Trust-Based Philanthropy Cohort

Is your organization working to embed more trust-based, racially equitable practices in your grantmaking? Are you looking for tools and skills to model a culture of openness, transparency, and equity within your organization? Are you seeking peer connections with colleagues who are committed to sharing learnings and exploring more racially-equitable and trust-based philanthropic practices, structures, and culture?

The Trust-Based Philanthropy Cohort is a three-month learning and action cohort, offered in collaboration with Philanthropy Network Greater Philadelphia and the Trust-Based Philanthropy Project, advised by CHANGE Philanthropy. 

At its core, trust-based philanthropy begins with understanding power - and acknowledging how race, gender, and other factors of positionality shape our lived experiences and our relationship to power. As grantmakers, we have a responsibility to recognize that we're operating within an inequitable system that has perpetuated a racial wealth gap. Meanwhile, white dominant norms and perspectives have informed and influenced perceptions of who is deemed trustworthy and who is not. Being a trust-based funder requires constant and continuous examination of the implications of such biases in our day-to-day decision-making, as well as our culture, structures, leadership, and practices.

This cohort is specifically designed for senior leaders of grantmaking organizations that are ready to embrace and/or deepen their commitment to trust-based philanthropy with a particular focus on advancing racial equity. Participants will walk away with new peer connections, tools, and clear action steps that they can implement in leading organizational change toward trust-based, racial-equity focused philanthropy.

Intended Outcomes

Participants will be able to:

  • Articulate examples of how systemic inequity shows up in traditional philanthropy and a plan to identify areas of focus within their organizations that need to be more explicitly addressed
  • Identify tangible aspects of their organizational culture that they want to work on; and ideas for integrating values more intentionally into their organizational culture
  • Have a deeper self-awareness about their power and limitations, tips on how to take a coaching stance in their management approach, and a stronger sense of connection with one another as fellow leaders in philanthropy
  • Identify at least one structural component of their organization that needs to be changed and a plan of action in partnership with a peer accountability partner
  • Understand of how the six grantmaking practices of trust-based philanthropy require a racial equity lens in order to prevent potential harm
  • Have a deeper sense of commitment to their work in trust-based and racially equitable philanthropy, and a workplan for how they'll activate that commitment with a dedicated accountability partner for peer coaching

The lead faculty for this program will be Pia Infante, Co-Executive Director at The Whitman Institute, with additional perspectives from other philanthropy leaders brought in throughout the series. The sessions will be co-facilitated by Mariah Casias, Vice President of Learning and Evaluation at Philanthropy Network Greater Philadelphia and Yi-Ching Lin, Vice President of Learning at Philanthropy New York. 

Who Should Apply to the Trust-Based Philanthropy Cohort?

The group is open to Philanthropy New York and Philanthropy Network Greater Philadelphia members, any size (assets/staff), who meet the following criteria. 

  • Your organization has a commitment - or intends to commit - to policies or practices that build racial equity in your grantmaking while institutionalizing trust-based practices. 
  • Participants should demonstrate that they hold an organizational position with a significant influence on organizational outcomes. This can mean an executive, senior leadership role, or another role in which you have decision-making power on grantmaking practices and organizational outcomes. 
  • Participants have a basic understanding of equity vs. equality, racial equity, and the dimensions of racism. These workshops are not intended for those who are relatively new to racial equity work and trust-based philanthropy.

Priority will be given to pairs. Members in both operational and grantmaking roles within their organization may apply for this program. We strongly encourage more than one person per foundation to attend because change happens on different levels and in different ways within an organization. We hope for cross-departmental teams to attend and work as pairs during this process. The workshops are designed to support participants in incorporating this learning into changes in their internal and external practices.

What is the Expected Commitment?

Participants should demonstrate that they can:

  • Commit to attending all 6 VIRTUAL sessions across 3 months, as well as complete assignments given in between sessions:
    • Session 1:  Thursday, April 7, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
    • Session 2:  Thursday, April 28, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
    • Session 3:  Thursday, May 12, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
    • Session 4:  Thursday, May 26, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
    • Session 5:  Thursday, June 16, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
    • Session 6:  Thursday, June 30, 1:00-4:00 PM, ET
  • Have a willingness and commitment to examining and working toward racial justice, including a commitment to adopting a systems framework, and institutionalizing trust-based practices within their organizations, with the explicit goal of alleviating power imbalances and building more trusting relationships with grantee partners
  • Commit to learning new principles, equity approaches and tools, and to share successes and challenges with their peers in order to be part of advancing racial equity and trust-based practices

What are the Costs?

  • $800 per individual
  • $1200 for two individuals in one organization

To learn more about PNY program fees, click here.

What is the Application and Selection Process? 

We are building a cohort of 25 – 30 members that is racially diverse and committed to creating a community that enhances and supports each other and the greater goal of equity in the sector. We will build the cohort with intention around collective knowledge capacity to advance racial equity work both internally and externally.

We encourage applicants from both the operational and grantmaking sides of the foundation. We encourage cross-departmental teams to attend and work as pairs during this process. Greater consideration will be given to pairs or teams who influence and oversee to effect some level of change within an organization’s culture or grantmaking portfolio.

PNY invites members to apply here. Once your application is submitted, we will be in touch with the next steps. 

Key Dates (These dates are approximate; the schedule may shift as the process proceeds.) 

  • January 12, 2022: Applications Open 
  • February 11, 2022, 5 PM: Deadline for submission of applications  
  • March 7, 2022: Cohort selection and outreach
  • April 7, 2022: Launch of Trust-Based Philanthropy Cohort

Should you have any questions, feel free to contact Yi-Ching Lin, Vice President of Learning.