updated 2/7/2011 4:17:57 PM ET 2011-02-07T21:17:57

NEW YORK, Feb. 7, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- GrantCraft — a groundbreaking enterprise that equips grantmakers with an array of tools to help them hone their craft and be more effective — is moving from the Ford Foundation to the Foundation Center in New York and European Foundation Centre in Brussels, the three institutions jointly announced today.

The Ford Foundation's decision to award GrantCraft to the two organizations — along with a $1 million grant — signals an expansion of the initiative's reach to serve the growing community of professional grantmakers worldwide. Philanthropic giving across borders that addresses complex global issues such as peace, migration, and poverty is growing. The Foundation Center and European Foundation Centre will usher in a new phase in the development of GrantCraft to help grantmakers keep pace with the demands of this changing landscape and the evolving needs of stakeholders.

"We are exceptionally proud of what GrantCraft has accomplished over the last 10 years, and we are confident that through the visionary stewardship of the Foundation Center and European Foundation Centre it will break new ground in serving our field," said Luis Ubiñas, president of the Ford Foundation. "We're especially excited to see it going global, reflecting not only the growth of philanthropy around the world but an intense interest in the knowledge that GrantCraft has to offer foundations everywhere."

The Foundation Center is the leading authority on philanthropy worldwide. It plans to leverage its extensive experience engaging grantmakers and others around critical issues to broaden the GrantCraft community. "A key Foundation Center priority is to empower donors with the knowledge they need to be more strategic, efficient, and effective," said Bradford Smith, president of the Foundation Center. "We are thrilled to add GrantCraft to our suite of tools and to be in a position to strengthen its value."

The incorporation of GrantCraft into the European Foundation Centre's core work also comes at an opportune time, as enthusiasm for training, peer-learning, and practical guidance has increased exponentially over recent years among grantmakers at both the European and global levels. The growing interest among this constituency sets the stage for the adaptation of GrantCraft materials to a wider audience.

"Personally, I have been a GrantCraft supporter since its inception and look forward to building on the impressive legacy that the Ford Foundation has laid out," said Gerry Salole, chief executive of the European Foundation Centre. "While we anticipate taking advantage of the license for change that we have been granted, we firmly believe that future GrantCraft successes will be rooted in the significant work that has already been so diligently carried out."

The Ford Foundation has a history of incubating new projects like GrantCraft, which was launched under the leadership of Jan Jaffe in 2001 to fill a critical knowledge gap in philanthropy. Starting out with a small collection of case studies and examples that served as orientation materials for the foundation's program officers, in the decade that followed, GrantCraft was developed into a vast store of practical wisdom aimed at helping grantmakers from all organizations get beyond the basics and work more effectively. Today, publications on 30 key issues that grantmakers face are available to more than 21,000 GrantCraft subscribers.

"We are enormously grateful to Jan Jaffe for her remarkable stewardship of GrantCraft's growth, and for bringing it to this exciting juncture," Ubiñas said. "It's a great moment for these terrific organizations that serve the field." The Foundation Center and European Foundation Centre won the project through an open bid process in which the Ford Foundation and a committee of several peer foundations, including the Hewlett, Packard, W.K. Kellogg, and Gates foundations, weighed proposals from across the sector.

Both organizations have expressed a commitment to championing grantmaker voices and delivering tools and insights that move the philanthropy sector forward. Grantmakers are invited to weigh in on future GrantCraft topics by participating in the survey now at the GrantCraft web site: www.grantcraft.org . Visitors will also find brief video interviews with Bradford Smith, Gerry Salole, and Jan Jaffe answering questions about the new era of GrantCraft.

Visit the GrantCraft web site.


Cheryl Loe, Communications Project Manager, The Foundation Center, (888) 356-0354 ext. 701, communications@foundationcenter.org

Gerry Salole, Chief Executive, European Foundation Centre, +32.2.512.8938, gsalole@efc.be

Suzana Grego, Media Relations Chief, Ford Foundation, (212) 573-4879, s.grego@fordfoundation.org

About the Foundation Center

Established in 1956 and today supported by close to 550 foundations, the Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide. Through data, analysis, and training, it connects people who want to change the world to the resources they need to succeed. The Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. and, increasingly, global grantmakers and their grants — a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance knowledge of philanthropy at every level. Thousands of people visit the Center's web site each day and are served in its five regional library/learning centers and its network of 450 funding information centers located in public libraries, community foundations, and educational institutions nationwide and beyond. For more information, please visit foundationcenter.org or call (212) 620-4230.

About the European Foundation Centre

The European Foundation Centre, founded in 1989, is an international membership association representing public-benefit foundations and corporate funders active in philanthropy in Europe, and beyond. The Centre develops and pursues activities in line with its four key objectives: creating an enabling legal and fiscal environment; documenting the foundation landscape; building the capacity of foundation professionals; and promoting collaboration, both among foundations and between foundations and other actors. Emphasising transparency and best practice, all members sign up to and uphold the European Foundation Centre Principles of Good Practice. For more information, please visit www.efc.be.

About the Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent, nonprofit grant-making organization. For 75 years it has worked with courageous people on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. With headquarters in New York, the foundation has offices in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. For more information, please visit www.fordfoundation.org.

This information was brought to you by Cision http://www.cisionwire.com

The following pictures are available for download:

[Image] GrantCraft: Bradford Smith, President, The Foundation Center
[Image] GrantCraft: Gerry Salole, Chief Executive, European Foundation Centre
[Image] GrantCraft: Jan Jaffe

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