The Environmental Justice Resourcing Collective (EJRC) at the Kataly Foundation is a group of nine women of color movement leaders who have a long history of engagement in intersectional environmental and social justice work.

After being established at Kataly in 2020, the nine leaders of the EJRC engaged in a participatory process to set funding priorities, grantmaking strategy, and make decisions about grantees. Over the past two years, the Collective has committed $37.4 million to 117 grantees, which includes rapid response grantmaking following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Participatory grantmaking can be a powerful tool to center the experiences and expertise of people who have deep knowledge of the issue areas in which grants are being made. It is also a process that comes with unique needs for support. Foundations that are engaging with participatory grantmaking must be aware of how their institutional practices do — and do not — set participants and grantees up for success.

In this piece, Marni Rosen, Senior Advisor to the EJRC, and Shaena Johnson, EJRC Program Officer, offer reflections on the process that has happened within Kataly to facilitate the Collective’s grantmaking, where there were breakdowns in communication, and what the impact has been.

Read the full article about participatory grantmaking by Shaena Johnson and Marni Rosen at Medium.