Philanthropedia Blog

Announcing New Grant from the Hewlett Foundation’s Philanthropy Program

April 9th, 2010 by Deyan Leave a reply »

I am incredibly excited to announce that Philanthropedia is the proud recipient of another grant from the Hewlett Foundation’s philanthropy program, headed by Paul Brest and Jacob Harold. This follow-up grant will allow Philanthropedia to continue improving its research to identify high-impact nonprofits and inspire donors to give strategically. In addition, we believe this new round of funding is another testament to the Hewlett Foundation’s firm commitment to improving the effectiveness of the nonprofit sector.

What is particularly noteworthy here is that the Hewlett Foundation has continued its philanthropy program as other major foundations have either discontinued funding the philanthropy sector or at least shifted their focus to supporting only their past grantees. We congratulate Paul and Jacob for their persistence and commitment  and believe their efforts have already proven fruitful, not just because of the progress we have made, but also because groundbreaking initiatives such as TakeAction@GuideStar are now becoming a reality.

For us, the Hewlett Foundation’s support has been more than just financial. Philanthropedia has had the privilege of being incubated for the past several months in the foundation’s offices in Menlo Park, CA. Sharing a physical space with so many outstanding program officers has helped the Philanthropedia team learn about different social causes, jumpstart the process of recruiting experts, and ultimately carry out our research successfully. In addition, we have benefited tremendously from the advice of the entire foundation staff– colleagues in facilities, legal, communications, and so on – whose support has been crucial as we have been building Philanthropedia as an organization for the past 9 months.

Most importantly, I want to personally thank both Paul Brest and Jacob Harold for generously offering their time and advice. Without their help, Philanthropedia would certainly not exist. In particular, Jacob has spent countless hours with us on a wide range of issues, from the very tactical (e.g. how to phrase questions in our survey) to the very strategic (e.g. what is a compelling vision for philanthropy?). We have also benefitted tremendously from Paul’s advice, who has the gift of being incredibly rigorous in thinking about methodologies and theories of change while at the same time being very pragmatic and understanding of the need for incremental improvement and the risks associated with innovation. This is a remarkable and very rare combination that I have hardly ever encountered.

For all of the above, as well as for the other countless cases of support, the entire Philanthropedia team would like to thank the Hewlett Foundation and in particular the philanthropy program headed by Paul and Jacob. We aspire to realize Philanthropedia’s potential and do our part to contribute to the philanthropy sector as a whole.

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