The case for strengthening communities

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For the latest annual CIVICUS report on the state of civil society, Avila Kilmurray and Barry Knight (GFCF) bring attention to a new global development industry that “may not be fit for purpose”, calling for a more holistic approach to local challenges:

Many institutional funders have an instinctive preference for bigger, better-resourced civil society organisations (CSOs). The rationale is that such an approach leads to better outreach and impact monitoring, due to economies of scale. This contribution to the 2015 CIVICUS State of Civil Society Report challenges this pattern of support for larger, more formalised CSOs, as opposed to community-based organisations. The perspective is derived from the work of the Global Fund for Community Foundations, which gives small grants to organisations that promote philanthropy in local communities, and operates in ways that differ markedly from conventional donor support. Continue reading (PDF).

These 27 guest contributions commissioned by CIVICUS for the State of Civil Society Report 2015 focus on civil society resourcing. The guest inputs discuss a range of funding issues encountered by civil society organisations and activists, including official development assistance and other forms of support from governments, philanthropy, corporate social responsibility and non-financial resources.

Avila Kilmurray is the Director of the Global Fund for Community Foundations. Barry Knight is an adviser of the Global Fund for Community Foundations and the Executive Director of CENTRIS. Download the full report from the WINGS Knowledge Center.

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