Global Fund for Community Foundations


The Global Fund for Community Foundations has been an independent entity since 2009, when it incorporated as a UK-registered charity with an independent board of trustees. In 2010, it established its head office in Johannesburg, South Africa. Before its independent status in 2009, the Fund had been a three-year pilot project, set up in January 2006 as the joint initiative of the World Bank, the Ford Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and WINGS. The project was intended as a means of supporting the development of community foundations in transitioning and developing countries. In its pilot phase the Fund was hosted by the European Foundation Centre in Brussels, and a Management Committee was appointed to oversee its programmes and operations.


Provides grassroots grants to promote and develop community philanthropy organisations around the globe

Geographic Focus

Worldwide. The Global Fund for Community Foundations provides grants and technical support to community foundations and other local philanthropic institutions and support organizations primarily in developing economies in Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, East and Central Europe, and Central Asia. Priority is given to those countries where access to other funding opportunities is limited. Applications from community foundations representing disadvantaged communities in the global north – particularly from those community foundations working with and representing disadvantaged communities – are also considered on a case-by-case basis.

Programme Areas

The Global Fund for Community Foundations’ approach to grantmaking is flexible as the organisation funds different types of activities depending on the stage of an organisation’s development and the local context. A core underlying principle, however, is that grants are given to organizations and institutions that demonstrate a commitment to social change. In addition to grant money, the Global Fund also brings technical skills, knowledge and experience to its relationships with grantee partners, seeking to leverage relationships and resources to strengthen the local impact of grants.

Grants are intended for developing the organisational capacities of community philanthropy institutions, rather than supporting their programme areas, in order to increase their effectiveness

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