In its 17 years of existence, the Four Freedoms Fund (FFF) has become a vital force for strengthening the long-term ability of immigrant justice organizations to effectively organize and build power from the ground up. FFF has supported a strong infrastructure of local, state-based and regional organizations working to build lasting power in immigrant communities for advancing policies and practices that protect, promote and defend their self-determination, rights and opportunities.
When created in 2003, FFF—housed at NEO Philanthropy—supported just a handful of organizations; by 2020, it funded 144 grantees in more than 30 states and Washington, DC, and provided more than 60 grantees with capacity building and technical assistance.
The history of FFF is the story of how diverse funders can come together to learn, share strategies and ideas, and pool their resources to enhance their collective impact and strengthen a movement for the long term.
Despite sustained and targeted attacks on immigrant communities, FFF grantees have relentlessly continued the long and difficult work or organizing their communities. In the process and with sustained FFF support along the way, they deepened organizational capacity and advanced bold and inclusive policy victories. They demonstrated that immigrant communities are a powerful political force that cannot be ignored. Indeed, the story of FFF is the chronicle of an immigrant justice movement fighting to ensure all immigrants, regardless of immigration status, have dignity, power to shape change, and agency to determine the quality of their life, community and future.
Now, funders can draw from this experience in their own work on their issues by exploring the new report, “The Four Freedoms Fund: A Philanthropic Partnership Helps Build a Movement,” published by the Carnegie Corporation of New York. The report provides an overview of FFF’s history, mission and recent achievements. Its goal is to encourage more funders to join in the work and reimagine safety, inclusion and an equitable society for all.
Read the report here.