"All of us involved in philanthropy are interested in making a difference. There is a tendency, however, for those of us with power and resources to think we know best. Foundations (and development agencies and governments) have been happy to make decisions that will affect the lives of people living far away based on their own ideas about what needs to happen. The community philanthropy movement is demonstrating another way. It is showing the benefits of valuing local knowledge and giving power to those who intimately know the local political, social, economic and cultural environment. Sustained success and impact is far more likely if community capacity can be enhanced and local assets grown.
That is why it is so exciting that the Global Fund for Community Foundations is championing and supporting new ways of building local philanthropy, and of bringing together all of us who are interested in people based development. Having spent most of my working life in philanthropy, it is a real privilege to serve on the board of the Global Fund for Community Foundations and to witness and support the amazing work undertaken by our small and dedicated staff team. The Summit is a major milestone on our journey! Let’s enjoy it and use it as the launchpad for the next steps in building the global movement for community philanthropy."