Funders provide catalysts for collaboration conversations

Funders provide catalysts for collaboration conversations

Posted on May 31, 2012 by Pam Truitt

In case readers missed the individual announcements, there are several (relatively new) funding sources for nonprofits looking for technical assistance for collaborative conversations. The beauty of these sources is that they all support third-party facilitators.

A quick summary….and be sure to check out the links.

The Boston Catalyst Fund is made up of four foundations committed to a five-year plan:

-The Boston Foundation

-Boston LISC

- The Hyams Foundation

- United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley

These entities came together to provide funding for voluntary conversations around collaborative partnerships. Although the plan has a five-year timeline, Peter Kramer, the Catalyst Fund Manager, shared that their hope is to develop a permanent funding source.

Launched in September 2010, the Boston Catalyst Fund is the most mature of all the examples. The programs listed below opened for business within the past year!

Launched in April 2012, the California Catalyst Fund, a partnership among the California Healthcare Foundation, Blue of California Foundation and the Nonprofit Finance Fund, is the newest kid on the block. Given the concentration of the funders, it’s no surprise that the focus is around California-based healthcare—specifically, providing neutral facilitators for two or more community clinics.

The Sea Change-Lodestar Fund for Nonprofit Collaboration was announced Summer 2011 and is the first of its kind to fund facilitations for nonprofits without regard to issue or geography. Funding for collaboration grants includes facilitation and other technical assistance. This is great news for nonprofits located in markets where collaboration funding is not (yet) available!

And from the Big Apple comes the New York City Merger, Acquisition, and Collaboration Fund (NYMAC). In partnership with Sea Change, the new initiative is designed to encourage collaborations among nonprofits in the New York City area. NYMAC was announced in February 2012.

As The Patterson Foundation is a funder in this space on the Southwest coast of Florida, I’m impressed by the new programs and funding availability for neutral facilitators. I look forward to staying in touch to learn from them - and share what we've experienced.

What about you? Are you aware of new funding for collaborative conversations? Please share!

  • Learn about these and other concepts used in TPF's approach to philanthropy.


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