the gilliam foundation
To date the Gilliam Foundation has not publicized its charitable giving or its integral achievements in supporting civic efforts locally, nationally and internationally. As such the intent of this report is two-fold. First, it is to serve as a means of reflection and planning for the Foundation. As the African proverb says, "Knowledge is like a garden, it is not cultivated, it cannot be harvested'. Secondly, it serves as an informational tool that allows others to share the Foundation's lens from which observations have been made and conclusions drawn. Sharing the lens of the Foundation is expected to assist the non-profit sector in understanding the current intent of the Foundation and making sure future grant requests.
At its initial start-up in 198, the Gilliam Foundation was positioned well to be a support arm of a robust philanthropic sector within the state of Delaware. From its inception through 2008, The Gilliam Foundation made grants in excess of $2.5 million dollars. A myriad of charitable organizations benefited from this giving and included those representing the sectors of education, the arts, housing, employment health, economic empowerment and social justice.
With the collapse of the U.S economy in 2008, bringing with it high rates of unemployment and governmental deficits in funding and services, human need elevated dramatically and concomitantly with it extremely high reliance on the non-profit sector to meet the ever increasing need. During this time, it became a strategic imperative of the Gilliam Foundation to continue funding worthwhile projects, while at the same time maintaining viability. Hence, instead of its historical 'broad-brush funding" method, the Foundation decided to selectively fund projects that were looking to provide solutions to particular problems that concerned the Foundation the most. Accordingly, from 2009 to 2011, the Gilliam Foundation primarily funded non-profit programs that were looking to solve issues or provide solutions to educational problems. From 2011 to 2013, the Foundation funded programs that attempted to promote health-related solutions. Funding these specific, targeted initiatives still resulted in the Foundation awarding grants of approximately $725,000 dollars.
While the Gilliam Foundation takes great pride in the achievement of its benchmarks and goals which wholeheartedly aim at improving the lives of under served communities of color, it has now worked long and hard enough to assess the non-profit landscape where it has operated over the years. What follows are some of the key findings that have come to our attention as funders of the work performed by non-profit agencies. These findings will gauge much of the future work the GIlliam Foundation considers moving forward.
When the Gilliam Foundation has made great strides in giving since its inception, the above observations and reflections suggest a number of ways the foundation can strengthen itself and increase its impact in the Delaware community moving forward. Make no mistake the degree of experience in planning, giving and assessing its progress to date allows the Gilliam Foundation to clearly and unapologetically articulate its strategy of sustainability and social accountability in the approaching years. We expect the following to be our guiding principles or funding decisions:
1. Partnerships/Collaborations that maximize impact.
2. Board diversity that maximizes impact.
3. Outcome/Impact analysis
The Gilliam Foundation remains committed to the work that has been done and for the work that lies ahead. We anticipate that as this report calculates, communities and the organizations that serve them are made more aware o the resolute design by which we will continue to work to improve the lives of those who are experiencing the greatest need.