Last week, I read a post from Inside Philanthropy called Foundations need to tell their story better. It discusses the idea that foundations aren’t doing a good enough job telling the world about all the wonderful and diverse things they do. It is a good idea and one that applies to many, many organizations, not just foundations. I think the best part, though, didn’t come until the very last sentence: “foundations must do a better job telling their story, and helping the groups they support tell their own story.”
I think that if foundations want to really show the diversity and greatness of their investments (grants, PRIs, MRIs, etc. are all investments in one way or another), they should tell the story of those they are investing in—the nonprofits.
A great way to start telling the story of foundation grantees is to create a virtual tour of your programs. Instead of text-heavy program descriptions, incorporate photos and videos of funded programs to highlight success as well as provide examples of the funding areas. Many foundations list grantees on their website; if yours does, there should be links to the program/project/organization and a way to follow up with the program/project/organization contact so others looking to do similar work or get an understanding for the foundation’s focus can contact grantees.
Just a couple quick thoughts. I’d love to hear yours! Do you work for a nonprofit that has been featured in some way by a granter? How did it feel? What effect did it have on the organization or the foundation (to your knowledge)?