Radical Change in Philanthropy, and You?

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In this time of spontaneous, chaotic reorganization, we all will be forced to be radically different. Old habits, beliefs, and tacit compacts have landed us all in an odd transitional moment. Although we may know something about what we are transitioning from, no one knows where we are headed and through what we will have to pass to get there.

Even before the financial crisis began to unfold, the Hawaii Community Foundation realized that it had lapsed into philanthropic habits that might be counterproductive. So it opted to try a different way. HCF’s Kelvin Taketa and Chris Van Bergeijk describe the foundation’s experiment — which is still ongoing — in building grantmaking from the collective intelligence of community activists.

We’d love to hear what you think about their approach. We encourage you to engage in conversation with other readers on our website.

Still, we must all be committed to demanding change in our own practice. That can be uncomfortable — sometimes excruciatingly so. We have to push ourselves to act as individual agents of a better future in this country’s collective spaces. Is there something that you have started to do differently over the past year that you would like to commend to others?

For my part, I am doing more to develop resources for other organizations whose work is critically important to the times, making an effort to build the whole system well rather than just our own organization. How about you?