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Douty Foundation announces plans to sunset

Monday, August 3, 2020

Announcement from the Douty Foundation

Sparked by our 50th anniversary, over the past two years, our leadership team has reflected on the foundation’s past, its mission and on its future. Central to our conversation has been: Should the foundation continue in perpetuity as a private foundation or can our modest assets join with others to help amplify and accelerate aligned areas of interest and change?

As we continued these conversations into 2020, many of the issues that the foundation has sought to address through its grantmaking were thrust and exposed into the full public consciousness: equity and amplification of the voices of those most effected by inequitable systems.
Nimble by nature, we responded in March 2020 with a decision to release 25% of our assets into immediate response needs of our grant-supported organizations and to the economic needs of low-wage workers excluded from COVID-19-related government stimulus programs.
As the economic and health crises of COVID-19 - coupled with the civil unrest and protests sparked by systemic injustices in our nation - continue, we believe that our decision to cease operations as a private foundation at the end of calendar year 2021 is the right one.

What does this mean?

Throughout 2020, we will continue to support - to the fullest extent of our resources - work that centers on equity, amplifies the voices of those most effected by inequitable systems and seeks to dismantle those systems. At the end of 2021, we will turn any remaining assets over to an entity(ies) similarly aligned with our mission with the intent that our funds will bolster and further the work of economic, racial & gender justice.

While this may seem contrary to what a foundation like Douty should be doing in this moment (ie. why go out of business now if the issues the foundation seeks to address are finally gaining traction?). We see our decision and action as a potential and potent example for other lean funders to follow. Our decision is about providing resources to the greatest extent possible in this moment and to building a more robust, collective, aligned bank of resources to further movement and community building in the Philadelphia region.

While we are in the final stages of determining which entity(ies) will receive our assets, we anticipate making that decision sometime in 2021. Further, the decision will center squarely on how fully the entity(ies) actively embrace liberation philanthropy.

We are still going to make grants in the short term.....

We will continue to honor the funding commitments that were made by our foundation in 2019.

We will offer a Request for Proposals with a September 15, 2020 deadline.

And we are accelerating what would have been our September 2021 Request for Proposals to this September (both areas of funding focus remain 3-year funding commitments to grantees).

CLICK HERE for additional information about Douty Foundation's 2020 Fall Request for Proposals.

About the Douty Foundation
On December 28, 1968 the Douty Foundation was established as a small foundation to fund and fuel grassroots, community-driven opportunities and aspirations for social change with a focus on children and youth. The Douty Foundation provides general operating and program support grants to organizations in Montgomery and Philadelphia counties in Pennsylvania.