Historically, the period following a Presidential cycle proves challenging to civic engagement organizations, as many donors tend to shift resources to other priorities post-election. This is certainly the case in 2017. Exacerbating these tensions is the anticipated onslaught of challenging initiatives in the states in the first quarter (now), when state legislatures meet for the first time after the election.
State Infrastructure Fund (SIF) donors are moving quickly to invest in key state-based coordinating organizations to help these essential networks on the ground stabilize their organizations, retain staff, recalibrate strategies and conduct organizing and advocacy efforts in early 2017. We are pleased to share information about our grants and invite fellow donors to join us in investing resources to stabilize and strengthen these critical organizations. SIF is housed at NEO Philanthropy.
SIF has approved two-year sustaining grants to key coordinating organizations in nine states. This is the time when our state coalition leaders need funding for both 2017/18 planning and implementation of proactive and defensive advocacy strategies. Issue-based organizing funding is urgently needed in the states to build momentum and direct the energy of people who want to actively respond in these uncertain times.
This month, we are distributing $200,000 (over two years) to each of the following organizations:
- Arizona: One Arizona
- Colorado: Colorado Civic Engagement Roundtable
- Florida: Florida State Voices (fiscally sponsored by State Voices)
- Georgia: ProGeorgia State Table
- Montana: Western Native Voice and Montana Voices (fiscally sponsored by Western Organization of Resource Councils Education Project)
- North Carolina: Blueprint North Carolina
- Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Voice
- Virginia: Virginia New Majority Education Fund
- Wisconsin: Wisconsin Voices
In February, SIF is also planning to fund six high-performing civic engagement organizations in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Ohio and Wisconsin that conduct integrated voter engagement programs to ensure that people on the ground have a voice now and in the future.
We hope other funders will advance their funding schedule to quickly help stabilize the infrastructure of organizations we have worked together to build in the states, Our goal is to have a cadre of leaders and volunteers who are willing to challenge policies that threaten the public interest and build momentum for a more positive future.
The State Infrastructure Fund (SIF) is a collaborative of 13 national foundations and individual donors based at NEO Philanthropy. SIF supports state-based networks of organizations that work together to engage historically underrepresented voters in the democratic process and protect their right to vote.
Please note: SIF does not accept unsolicited proposals.