After 20 years, Full Circle Fund (FCF) continues to be at the forefront of connecting high-impact nonprofits with local professionals who are ready to apply their skills and experience to advance social justice. In partnership with the community, FCF identifies and engages individual volunteers with nonprofit community organizations advancing social justice initiatives and innovative solutions in the Bay Area and beyond.
Central to FCF’s Participatory Grantmaking work is a selection process designed to elevate voices of community members: FCF staff, volunteer Members, and Alumni Grant Partners do the due diligence. The process also elevates the impact of Members and Corporate Partners, connecting them directly with organizations with innovative structures, thoughtful strategies and solutions, strong leadership, and proven impact.
Nonprofit Grant Partners, who receive $15,000 each in unrestricted funding, along with their assigned teams of volunteer Members, collaborate during four-month long, hands-on engagements that help solve critical nonprofit needs. Projects are designed to help nonprofits at an inflection point develop strategies, unlock growth opportunities, and scale current and new ways to ultimately fulfill their missions. FCF funding areas include:
● Grant Cycle connects individual business leaders with nonprofit organizations working on Economic Opportunity, Education, Environment & Energy, and Health;
● Tech Accelerator Fund (TAF) connects individual tech leaders with tech nonprofits building original products or services that use a nonprofit business model to scale social impact;
● Corporate Accelerator Fund (CAF) connects with companies to launch a nonprofit accelerator that pairs top employees and executives with nonprofits to scale their impact.
FCF is a trusted partner to help companies reach Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) goals, as well as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion/Belonging (DEIB) goals, bolster employee engagement and retention, and fulfill leadership development objectives. Project team members participate in a “Power and Privilege” training to learn how to work collaboratively and effectively with professionals from diverse backgrounds.
In some cases, volunteer Members are invited to join a Grant Partner board of directors. Other Members continue to volunteer with a Grant Partner on other projects or in an informal advisory role. This substantive level of employee engagement can help companies and Bay Area professionals with leadership and professional development goals beyond grantmaking.
After the project, Members and Grant Partners are invited to complete a survey to help FCF evaluate and improve our program design and impact. This report includes survey highlights and project summaries.