New Donors are Stepping up to Address Advocacy Challenges

Currently, too few foundations and other funders commit adequate resources to public policy advocacy that addresses the key issues facing low income communities and communities of color.

Part of CPAF’s mission is to ensure there is a stable and robust funding source for such issues by the time it sunsets in 2020. “We’re very encouraged by the emergence of new donors willing to fund advocacy,” says Steve McConnell, CPAF’s President. “There is growing recognition that today’s critical issues require the use of all available tools, including lobbying, ballot initiatives and issue based electoral advocacy.”

Traditional 501(c)3 philanthropic resources are the most common type of funding available from most foundations, but there are significant restrictions on the use of these funds because of tax law and the restrictive policies of individual foundations. An increasing number of living donors, especially those drawn from the new class of tech billionaires, are willing to bypass the tax deductibility of their gifts and are funding 501(c)4 advocacy organizations, which have a much wider range of tools available for conducting their work. CPAF is seeking opportunities to partner with these funders on issues of mutual interest.