How Southern Power Fund upends traditional grantmaking

The Southern Power Fund wanted to raise at least $10 million to send to grassroots organizations, no strings attached, to address immediate community needs. The goal was to quickly get the money to small, primarily Black-led groups, which foundations often overlook. The group planned to develop an ecosystem of grassroots organizations and link them with experts who could help them fill in gaps, such as fundraising skills. The fund saw the potential to create long-term sustainability while developing a rarely used approach to philanthropy. The fund exceeded its goal, raising $14 million, primarily from foundations.