Funder/Activist Collaborative: The Grassroots Fund Model

The Grassroots Fund is governed collaboratively by its funding partners, (private foundations, community foundations, and individuals) and grassroots activist representatives at both the board and grantmaking committee levels (click here to see Board and Committee members). The grantmaking decisions are driven by a volunteer grantmaking committee populated by funding partners, non profit colleagues and grassroots activists from each of the 6 New England states.

What makes Grassroots Fund unique is its collaborative governance structure and the service it provides to its constituency. Grassroots Fund helps the most locally-oriented, often informal, grassroots groups, those too new to qualify for support from the private and community foundations. Grassroots Fund, a 501(c)(3) public charity, makes grants directly to these groups. By applying the rules of expenditure responsibility to its grantmaking, Grassroots Fund does not require a grantee to be incorporated, have a 501(c)(3) designation or a fiscal sponsor. In effect, Grassroots Fund is the fiscal sponsor of the groups it funds. While Grassroots Fund shares many community and private foundation values and priorities, what sets Grassroots Fund apart is its unique interest and its commitment to the newly engaged community groups to do their work for the environment.