GSF’s approach to grantmaking has deep roots in the foundation’s original policies. In 1946, the founder encouraged us to “…Pioneer new fields, where support from other sources is not readily available, and where the possibility of major gains exists, but also complete losses.” He understood the importance of experimenting, and of being patient enough to move through problems that arise.
As GSF has evolved, the values of patience and experimentation have led us to invest early in emerging organizations and their leaders, sustain long-term relationships as grantees take thoughtful risks, and stand with them through both failure and success. These principles guide our grantmaking strategies:
- Prioritize gender, racial and income equity
- Respect and follow the people most affected by an issue as our primary guides
- Seek change that reaches across social justice issues
- Build power, amplify voices and elevate local community leaders
- Connect grassroots power to a full span of action, from base-building and organizing to advocacy and policy implementation
- Go beyond grantmaking to partnerships by “looking around the corner” with grantees, listening, and responding to their assessment of needs
GSF is open to making multi-year, general operating grants in order to ease the burden of fundraising. We do not fund capital campaigns, direct services, or conferences and special events.