In 2021, individual donors gave two-thirds of the total philanthropic dollars in the U.S. Our Impact-Driven Philanthropy Initiative is designed to support them in distributing more money with fewer restrictions to organizations working to dismantle the root causes of inequity and transform the systems that created them.
- 484.85 BillionIndividuals, foundations, and corporations gave an estimated $484.85 billion to causes in the U.S. in 2021.
- 67%Individuals give 67% of total annual philanthropic dollars in the U.S.
- 9%9% of donors do comparative research before giving.
Redirecting resources to changemakers
Wealth inequality has dramatically increased in recent decades, yet philanthropic support for Black communities after 2020 has been a shocking 1.8 percent of total giving. Our work prioritizes investing in organizations working to change how donors give. These groups are led by communities that have been historically underrepresented and underserved by the philanthropic sector and marginalized by the social, political, and economic systems in which we live. Redirecting more money, with fewer restrictions, to changemakers is one of the best ways to transform our society for the better.
- Participant, Impact Driven Philanthropy Collaborative
We recognize that the ecosystem developed to support donors to give is underdeveloped and relatively new. Drawing upon network and organizing theory, we seek to build alignment, connectivity, and develop trusting relationships within this ecosystem in order to accelerate the pace of progress in moving resources toward justice. Change happens at the speed of trust, and trusting relationships support knowledge sharing, collaboration, and a faster spread of best practices and innovations by, for, and with our donor networks.
The Raikes Foundation incubated and launched Giving Compass in order to connect more donors to resources and knowledge that can guide them toward giving in ways more likely to make a difference. Now an independent 501c3, Giving Compass is reaching over 100,000 users each month and connecting givers to personalized learning resources and giving opportunities.
Our grantmaking dollars focus on creating a philanthropic environment that makes it easier for donors to make the most impact in the causes they care about. We invest in promising new models of donor support that influence giving toward equity, effectiveness, and systems-level change; fund research that explores how we understand the donor landscape, behavior, and support systems; and seek to uplift organizations and leaders who have historically been least well-served by philanthropy and have had less access to funding. We also boost innovations that support donors in meeting community priorities in direct, new ways.
Amplifying impact through collaboration
Building connections is core to our strategy: if you want to shift a system, you need to get the system in the room. We supported the launch of the Impact-Driven Philanthropy Collaborative, which brings together organizations and individuals committed to shifting how high-capacity donors give, with a goal to move resources and power to those on the frontlines working to change inequitable systems. It’s time to level the playing field for all Americans.
See our other strategies
All students deserve educational experiences that affirm who they are and prepare them to thrive. We support youth, educators, and policymakers to reimagine and redesign our public education system so that all young people have an excellent education, no matter who they are or where they live.
Housing Stability for Youth
Every young person deserves a safe and stable place to call home. The Raikes Foundation works with young people, multi-sector coalitions, and policymakers to not only respond to youth and young adult homelessness in Washington State and across the U.S. but also to prevent it from happening in the first place.
Resourcing Equity & Democracy
A well-functioning democracy for all requires a thriving multiracial society. The Resourcing Equity and Democracy portfolio at the Raikes Foundation strives to build capacity for democratic life by investing in organizing that builds the power of communities who have not had equal voice in our country’s institutions.
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