Public and Private: Building A Bridge?
Why do private funders need to pay attention to the public world of policy makers and government officials? The changes that have already taken place since October 19th are one convincing answer.
The announcement of the reinstatement of the long-form census by the new federal Liberal Government is an indication of the difference public policy makers can make in the work of foundations and their grantees. Without the data provided by the long-form census, many organizations were having trouble identifying areas of need in their communities and tracking the impact of their interventions over time. The return of the mandatory census will address that problem.
This is just one example of why public policy matters to private funders. Other examples were provided at the recent PFC Symposium in Toronto on the theme of building bridges between public and private funders. Some terrific stories were told by foundations such as The The Atkinson Foundation, The J. W. McConnell Family Foundation, the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Ivey Foundation, all of whom are working actively in collaboration with public funders and governments at all levels. And some challenging ideas were put forward on the role of foundations in our public life.
What did we learn from these foundations and others who spoke at the symposium?
PFC Symposium 2015 was an insightful day of conversation that left one participant tweeting #PFC2015 about leaving in a “serious philanthropic swoon”….a good outcome we conclude!