We build connections and common cause among those who believe that community change work must be driven by the people of the community.
Grassroots Grantmakers is a network of people and organizations who believe that community change efforts should “begin with residents” and be rooted in a deep commitment to thriving communities that are inclusive, fair, and sustainable. A defining characteristic is that most of the work is done not only for the people of a neighborhood or community but also by them.
People and organizations in our network express this belief in one or more of the following ways:
- They work to get resources on the ground and into the hands of grassroots community groups and leaders who are strengthening the neighborhoods and rural communities where they live. They might be based in philanthropic foundations, government agencies, crowd-funding platforms, or other organizations that do—or want to do—this kind of work. They might use micro-grants as a way to get resources on the ground while enhancing civic participation and democracy. They might offer grassroots leadership training, technical support, or other forms of assistance to grassroots groups and leadership. They see grassroots grantmaking as a promising method of place-based philanthropy.
- They take action in their own neighborhoods and rural communities to make them more welcoming, fair, and sustainable. They might be based in grassroots community groups, neighborhood associations, or informal collectivities of active citizens. The action they take can vary immensely, from after-school clubs to neighborhood discussion circles, from citizen science pollution monitoring projects to voting rights education sessions, from anti-racism arts projects to bulk buying food security projects, and so on. They might access grassroots grants to support their work. They see grassroots grantmaking as a promising strategy for community well-being.
- They research grassroots change efforts and grassroots grantmaking as a change strategy and share the results.
- They are active in a related field such as placemaking, community organizing, asset based community development, or civic engagement, and find common cause with our work. Like us, they are interested in constituent-driven community change work and in building the capacity of constituent-controlled grassroots organizations.
We support our members and other interested people by offering:
- On-line resources to share stories, tools, research, and theory from our field
- On-line participatory learning opportunities, such as webinars
- In-person learning opportunities, such as our signature On The Ground annual gathering and consultation services
Our resources are offered for free or at a reasonable rate for cost recovery, as best we can. Please consider taking out a membership to support our work.
Please note: Grassroots Grantmakers does not offer grants. We are a learning network, not a source of grants.