An Assessment of The Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts’ Grantmaking Portfolio
Using a Racial Justice Lens
In 2009 the Applied Research Center and the Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity published the Catalytic Change: Lessons Learned from Racial Justice Grantmaking Assessment, Appendix 3: Assessing Our Grantmaking for Its Racial Justice Potential. Using that tool to assess The Health Foundation’s (THF) grantmaking (from 2000-2012) with regard to “racial justice,” these key findings resulted:
- THF has funded 5:12 (42%) of the applications received from organizations of color;
- THF has funded 30:57 (53%) of the applications received from organizations located in & serving communities of color;
- THF has funded 35:75 (47%) of its grants to organizations of color and organizations located in & serving communities of color. These 35 grants total $15.3 M (67%) of THF's total grantmaking of $22.9 M.
It is important to note that Worcester County is 81% white and THF has intentionally sought to place funds throughout the region, including for example a Synergy Initiative project in Winchendon which approximates over 90% white.
It is also important to recall that in developing the Foundation's avenues for grantmaking (i.e., Activation Fund and Synergy Initiative), the Board determined that THF's grants should be of a substantive size 9as compared to the $10-15,000 grants being made by most donors including the Greater Worcester Community Foundation) in order for THF to add the most value or impact in the region. That decision was made with the understanding that small, grass roots organizations would likely not have the capacity to manage $50,000+ grants, and that grass roots organizations should therefore be encouraged to work with larger organizations in seeking grants from THF. This approach has been maintained by the Board throughout the Foundation's 12-year history of grantmaking.
Click on the following links to learn more:
Grants Awarded Based on Racial Justice Categories
Grant Amount Awarded Based on Racial Justice Categories
Applications Declined Based on Racial Justice Categories
Worcester County Census - 2011 Race Data