Planting Roots in the South: Announcing a New Home for GSP at the Southern Education Foundation
NFG is pleased to share some exciting news about the growth of Grantmakers for Southern Progress and plans to deepen its impact by planting organizational roots in the South.
Grantmakers for Southern Progress had its genesis in 2009. In its early years, GSP and Neighborhood Funders Group decided to formally partner in order to bridge relationships between southern and national social change-oriented funders. In partnership over the last four years, both entities have benefitted greatly. GSP’s national profile has become well-established, and NFG’s capacity and networks in the South have grown and deepened.
GSP has a growing, diverse and expanded base of partners that include national foundations, regional foundations, labor unions, individual donors and community foundations. Over the last few years, GSP has directly facilitated new investments in the South of nearly $3.1 million dollars. The growth and momentum spurred by GSP’s efforts to organize funders around an agenda for southern progress was evident at GSP’s April funder 2017 gathering in Charleston, SC. It was GSP’s first large regional convening, with 127 GSP members representing 82 national and regional foundations coming together with regional leaders to share and discuss the opportunities, challenges and best strategies for supporting structural change and advancing progress in the South.
At this point in GSP’s development, it is clear that GSP has to not only be about the South, but of the South – and the best way for GSP to do this is to be geographically based in the South. We are pleased to announce that GSP has chosen the Southern Education Foundation in Atlanta as its new institutional home.
Celebrating its 150th anniversary this year, the Southern Education Foundation’s (SEF) mission of advancing equity and excellence in education for all students in the South, particularly low income students and students of color, aligns seamlessly with GSP’s focus on racial and gender equity as key indicators of progress in the South. SEF sees this partnership with GSP as a real opportunity to work with and through the philanthropic community to increase collaboration and coordination among stakeholders in the region; increase ability of stakeholders to engage in meaningful cross-sector engagement; and leverage national support for Southern-led efforts.
NFG is excited about GSP’s next steps as it becomes a Southern-based entity, and is looking forward to an ongoing strategic partnership with GSP and SEF that inspires philanthropy to bolder action in promoting racial justice and equity in the South.
For more information about Grantmakers for Southern Progress, please visit https://www.fundthesouth.org/.