Someone once told us that a software implementation was akin to building a house. Sure, anyone can put up four walls, a few doors, and a roof and call it a house, but then it’s no more than just a shell. Building a house requires planning, layout, experts in multiple areas, and feng shui (if you’re into that sort of thing).
Pillar leverages Fluxx grants management solution to scale their operation while improving communication and collaboration
Fluxx’s Community Manager Shawn Garrison met with Tiffany Ramos, Director of Operations at Pillar to discuss their mission, and how Fluxx has been an integral part of their operation.
Pillar was conceived out of the hardships realized by business from the COVID pandemic. Pillar saw a need to help small businesses survive during the tumultuous economic times by providing grants and loans to the small businesses within the Rainier Valley and Greater Seattle area in Washington state. As a result of their work, hundreds of small businesses are thriving today and continue to be a vital part of their communities.
The Need for Efficiency and Transparency
As the pandemic continued to impact small businesses, Pillar saw an increase in their grantmaking to ensure they kept to their mission within the community. They wanted to find a solution to help fill in some process gaps and be more efficient in their grantmaking. Additionally, they wanted to have greater visibility and control into how they were collaborating on grants and ensuring the right people reviewed the grants at the right time in the process. These needs ultimately led them to Fluxx.
The grants management process can vary depending on the size and scope of your organization. It is not uncommon to start with a simple approach involving simple tools, a combination of systems that are either stitched together or siloed (or for some, no system at all).
It’s impossible to discuss the giving landscape in India today without acknowledging the drastic economic reforms that made it possible. In 1991, India adopted a new industrial policy to liberalize the economy, increase employment opportunities, boost production and productivity, and encourage foreign investments. The policy substantially deregulated the industrial sector. Today, India’s economy is one of the fastest growing in the world. And the profitability of the last 30 years has led to immense new wealth creation. Now, much of that new wealth is looking to give back, and India has seen a sharp rise in new philanthropists and donors. One organization looking to support these donors (and communities across the country) is Dasra.
Dasra is an intermediary and strategic philanthropy foundation in India's multi-stakeholder development ecosystem. Its goal is to help India achieve its sustainable development goals by 2023 by helping funders give more strategically to vulnerable communities. When the pandemic struck India, the team led by this week’s podcast guest and Dasra co-founder and Partner, Deval Sanghavi, sprang into action and employed swift and effective trust-based philanthropy practices to support communities throughout India.
Most of us working in tech are familiar with the term ‘fail fast.’ It’s a philosophy that values extensive testing and incremental development of an idea or process. Those who are told to fail fast are also instructed to cut losses the second testing reveals something isn't working, keep working, and pivot to a new idea.
The core belief is that if you’re willing to fail, you are willing to learn. Why? Because, in many instances, we learn more from our failures than our successes. Startups have committed to this philosophy fully. This process has propelled many companies to unicorn status far faster than previous incumbents. But can the same concept apply to philanthropy — an industry rife with multi-year studies, detailed reporting, and methodical approaches?
Have you recently wondered how to scale to support a new infusion of funding? Started issuing new types of grants or investments? Onboarding more people or new departments to collaborate on your grantmaking process?
Feminist movements are under immense pressure. On June 24th, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, ending the right to an abortion that had been upheld for decades.
Many advocates and feminist leaders weren’t surprised by the decision and have warned that additional restrictive policies and laws will likely be passed. These restrictive laws threatening the health and safety of birthing people correspond with a spike in misogynistic content distributed across TikTok and other social platforms. The superior algorithms of these platforms compiled with a younger, more digitally savvy audience has made it possible for these videos to spread (billions of views within days) at an alarmingly fast rate.
But this rise in hateful vitriol has led to pushback and progress as well. Self-proclaimed misogynist Andrew Tate was recently banned from Meta platforms, Twitter, and TikTok. Scotland became the first country to offer feminine sanitary products for free nationwide. According to NPR, “New Zealand and Kenya distribute products for free in public schools” as well.
What’s #FixtheForm? And why did this international Grant Advisor campaign gain so much traction in a few short months? All this and more is revealed in this month's Untapped Philanthropy episode!
Untapped Philanthropy Season 2, Episode 6: What can we do to Fix the Form?
It’s no secret that millions of mission-related hours are lost every year navigating cumbersome grant application processes. To identify the needed top changes, a survey was launched by Laura Solomons, a fundraiser for a social mobility charity and former Trustee and Chair of a grant-giving foundation, and Kari Aanestad, the Co-Director of GrantAdvisor.org and the Associate Director at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits. In less than four weeks it received 500 responses from grantseekers across nine countries, “representing every shape, size, and activity area of the nonprofit sector.”
The Human Genome Project was an international scientific research project working to determine the base pairs that make up human DNA in order to sequence all of the human genome. And no, Untapped Philanthropy hasn’t suddenly pivoted from discussions on philanthropy to science. But we thought it might be helpful to remind you of the famous Human Genome Project because this week’s philanthropy guest is taking a similarly scientific approach to philanthropy.
The Impact Genome Project has taken a similar approach to philanthropy by analyzing the DNA of impact programs to determine what is and isn't working.
This week we are thrilled to have the Executive Director of the Center of Impact Sciences at the University of Chicago and the co-founder of the Impact Genome Project, Jason Saul on the podcast to tell us about his work, and most importantly — share more about the Project’s integration with Fluxx!