Grantmaking Priorities & Practices

Grantmaking Priorities

The Daphne Foundation is committed to supporting Organizations that:

Are Community Based Organizations in New York City. Groups we support operate within the five boroughs of New York City. They are registered as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization or have a fiscal sponsor that is a 501(c)3. Groups are community based, which may be defined by geography, shared interest, and/or shared racial, ethnic, gender, or sexual orientation. 

Are Dedicated to Community Leaders. Groups we supportare dedicated to building community leadership by engaging residents in developing solutions to solve local problems, thus enhancing the quality of life for all New Yorkers. Community members have the ability to influence organizational decisions by serving as staff members, board members or are on the organizational leadership team.

Address Community Concerns as Defined by the Community Members. groups we support seek gender, racial, economic, and/or social justice, working with low-income communities, women, children and families, communities of color, and immigrant communities. Daphne Foundation grantees work on a diverse range of interlocking community concerns including but not limited to: sustainable economies, community development, employment opportunities, access to public benefits, criminal justice reform, housing affordability, income inequality, public education, and related governance policies that increase the democratic participation and leadership of affected communities. 

Promote Strategies for Systemic or Institutional Change. Groups we support emphasize community organizing and/advocacy strategies in order to create meaningful institutional change in their communities. The Daphne Foundation will give preference to advocacy efforts that involve community members who are genuinely integrated in an organization’s decision-making process. 

  • We define “community organizing” as bringing people together to identify issues and take joint action to bring about change. drawing on a broad constituency that shapes and guides their agenda, community organizing groups develop and train leaders, work to promote accountability, and bring about both personal transformation and systemic change.
  • We define “advocacy strategies” as strategies that raise public attention or rally public action in order to bring issues into the realm of public concern and effect policy change. Advocacy may be carried out by those directly affected or by others working on behalf of its constituency. We have a preference  for advocacy efforts that involve community residents 

Work as Active Collaborators. Groups we support actively  collaborate with local, regional, statewide, and national partners

Are Committed to Organizational Health and Sustainability. Groups we support are committed to deepening their impact by strengthening their  organizational health and sustainability including human talent and/or capital.

Grantmaking Practices

  1. Provide funding for general operating and capacity building;
  2. Provide multi-year funding for five years;
  3. Support organizations that prioritize the leadership of communities directly affected by systems of injustice and inequality.
  4. Fund intersectional issues and approaches, which supports solidarity within and across issues, communities and social justice movements;
  5. Minimize and/or streamline administrative requirements; 
  6. Fund systems change that is based in a radical justice, gender justice, social justice and/or human rights values;
  7. Trust grantees’ vision knowing the difficulty and longer-term nature of systems change efforts because having a bold vision and raising critical issues is part of a longer-term process of social transformation;
  8. Fund issues that grantee organizations deem critical, even when it may prove harder to demonstrate the impact (e.g., challenging power structures)
  9. Practice a commitment to learning from grantees and other partners, which inform the Daphne Foundation strategies; and 
  10. Engage in advocacy within the broader philanthropic landscape to demonstrate the impact of investing in systems change organizations with longer-term general support.