Fifteen Years of Philanthropic Leadership: A Summative Evaluation of the Marguerite Casey Foundation
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Type of Work106 pages
Citation of Original PublicationMavis G. Sanders and Claudia L. Galindo, Fifteen Years of Philanthropic Leadership: A Summative Evaluation of the Marguerite Casey Foundation , IssueLab, 2016.
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Marguerite Casey foundation
transform the lives of poor families and children
organizational development and movement building
Established in October 2001, the Marguerite Casey Foundation (Foundation) has been in the forefront of movement building to transform the lives of poor families and children. Its evolution has occurred in two overlapping and interconnected phases described here as organizational development and movement building. Regarding organizational development, the Foundation has: Established its mission, vision, and an overall strategy–Equal Voice; Developed innovative grantmaking guidelines that include general, long-term funding to support cornerstone organizations working across issues, races and ethnicities, regions and egos to bring about change that improves the social and economic well-being of families; Evolved its theory of change, highlighting the importance of the overlapping strategies of communications and grantmaking to achieve the Foundation’s goals; and Identified five indicators of movement building progress within the Equal Voice framework to guide its evaluations. Additional progress has focused on movement building. Specifically, the Foundation has: Developed the Equal Voice National Family platform, a comprehensive agenda for policy change, with the guidance and input of tens of thousands of low-income families; Built 13 regional Equal Voice networks and one national Equal Voice network by providing support for network weavers; Developed a communications strategy and infrastructure that is synthesized with grantmaking to advance the Foundation’s mission; and Launched an independent, family-led membership organization, Equal Voice Action, to further advance its efforts. Now, embarking on its 15th year, the Foundation is entering a new phase of possibilities at a time when the prevalence of poverty and the risks associated with economic insecurity are increasing. This summative evaluation was commissioned by the Foundation to mark this milestone, facilitate reflection on lessons learned, and provide recommendations for future work. Drawing on secondary sources, interview and survey data gathered from Marguerite Casey Foundation leaders and staff, network weavers, and current and former grantees, the report describes the Foundation’s practices and impact as well as key areas of consideration for its continued and future work.