Giving Compass' Take:

• Demographic data is vital for philanthropic organizations and donors to craft an equitable funding response that fills gaps for communities that are struggling the most. 

• How can individual donors direct capital using an equity lens for funding causes? How can equitable practices for foundations encourage individual donors' practices toward equity?

•  Read more about embracing an equity lens in your philanthropy.

Every day we wake up anxiously to frightening new data. The number of cases. The number of deaths. Which country has surpassed another? Who’s flattening the “curve.”  And … that the pandemic’s impact is shockingly disproportionate across race, age, gender, and geography.

Due to the living legacies of oppression baked deeply into our social, economic, and political systems, we are seeing that the folks most negatively affected by the crisis are more likely to be Black, Brown, and Native.  In the U.S. especially, we are also seeing a backlash of xenophobia towards Asian and Pacific Islander communities due to efforts to racialize the virus. Add in other intersecting identities like gender identity, age, sexual orientation, immigrant status, justice-system impacted, disability status, and socio-economic class and it becomes clear that those most affected will likely face greater challenges to accessing aid or meeting eligibility requirements for existing support and recovery packages.

Although the scale here is unprecedented, the narrative is a familiar one to us. Prior to the pandemic, CHANGE Philanthropy, PEAK Grantmaking, D5 Compass, and Candid were partnering to raise awareness about the importance of collecting and sharing demographic data. As COVID-19 continues to disproportionately affect our most vulnerable communities and philanthropy mounts a large scale response to growing needs, we encourage foundations and nonprofits to consider these recommendations in an effort to accurately account for the reach and impact of philanthropic dollars and use this data to address funding gaps to communities most impacted by the crisis.

Our challenge for you

  • Review your response strategy with an equity lens.
  • Move the money simply and equitably.
  • Track your grants’ intended impact and community reach.
  • Be transparent by sharing your giving and program data.

Read the full article about demographic data by Carly Hare, Kelly Brown, C. Davis Parchment, and Melissa Sines at PEAK Grantmaking.