FiPR News

2020 Highlights

This past year was characterized by agility and adaptability as we worked together to continue to deliver important services and support to our members. 

Filantropía Puerto Rico (FiPR) continued to assert its role as a convener and as the amplifier of the impact of philanthropy in Puerto Rico, enabling philanthropic entities and civil society groups to work together for the benefit of the people of the island. 

We led and facilitated numerous efforts to address ongoing crises and new challenges impacting Puerto Rico’s Third Sector and lives in historically marginalized populations. Some of those efforts originated in FiPR, others were requested by philanthropic or nonprofit entities, and the rest were collaborations with peer organizations.

As we continue on our day-to-day grind, it is important to pause and reflect on the work done in the past twelve months.

Here are some highlights:

Action Dialogues

We expanded our [Action Dialogues] to a consistent recurrence so that our members may explore their shared interests in topics of housing, arts & culture, environment and education, while coordinating actions with bigger impact. To facilitate these interactions, Joel Franqui has joined the FiPR team as program coordinator.

Annual Convening

42 members representing 16 entities participated in our third annual Convening to connect with their philanthropic peers through themed sessions and networking events.


Held 23 educational webinars on a large variety of topics that ranged from an epidemiologist's COVID overview to what is needed to tackle abandoned properties throughout the island.

Research & Advocacy

FiPR got involved in a wide range of topics such as:

  • COVID-19 resource pagea gathering of news, information and government requests from Puerto Rico’s third sector 
  • Proyecto de Protección: Comunidad y Organizaciones de Impacto Social y Económico: a proposal supported by 125 organizations that sought the allocation of $334,169,539 in CARES Act funds to protect nonprofits from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and to help them continue servicing vulnerable populations. 
  • A Philanthropic Call to Action Towards a Just and Resilient Puerto Rico: 26 local and national grantmakers and philanthropic leaders pledged their commitment to the 3.2MM US citizens of Puerto Rico as the island continues to recover from 2017’s hurricanes, ongoing natural disasters, and the health and economic impacts of the pandemic.
  • Philanthropic investment guides: Worked with 63 nonprofits and individuals to develop six investment guides (arts & culture, education, environment, housing, transparency & governance, and just recovery) to help grantmakers be more effective in advancing equity and social justice in Puerto Rico. The guides, to be published in 2021, feature policy and other recommendations from those directly addressing issues on the ground. 
  • Reduction in non-profit donations: FiPR advocated against a proposed reduction in non-profit contributions that tax-exempt corporations are required to make.

Special Projects

Collaborative Fund

FORWARD Fund Puerto Rico was launched to support recovery efforts after Hurricane Maria.Read a summary of our grantees' achievements since the fund's inception.

Learning to Listen

In August 2020, Fund for Shared Insight (FSI) awarded grants to FiPR and six other US-based philanthropy serving organizations (PSO) to jointly develop toolkits from a diversity, equity & inclusion (DEI) lens to help grantmakers listen to the people they ultimately seek to help. This two-year project is an experimental lab in which FiPR and its members will learn and test in our local context new philanthropic practices rooted in DEI, while also building new relationships with peer organizations in the US to expand our support network.

Feedback Incentives Learning Group

FiPR, along with six grant making organizations, is undertaking experiments as part of a working group facilitated by Feedback Labs to encourage nonprofits and foundations to improve how they listen to the people who are meant to benefit from their actions. FiPR’s purpose is to develop a high-quality feedback culture within the organization and to be a role model for its implementation throughout the island’s philanthropic sector. Participation in this group will extend into the third quarter of 2021 and learnings will inform our 'Learning to Listen' project and vice versa. 

Inside FiPR


As a PSO we must continue growing our network and peer collaborations, so this year we:
  • Participated of the Environmental Grantmakers Association’s 2020 Winter Briefing held in Puerto Rico in the spring
  • Supported Grantmakers in the Arts in the planning of their 2021 annual convening which will take place on the island.
  • Advised the Fund for Shared Insight in their participatory grantmaking initiative that included people gravely affected by climate change. 

Members & Board of Directors

Our membership continues to expand and diversify, this year with six new local and US-based grant making organizations ranging in staff size from two people to 100+, and with multiple operations around the World. This resulted in an increase in the size (from seven to ten) and diversity (local and US-based) of our board of directors.

Staff & Internal Processes

Our staff grew with a program coordinator and two interns, one in the summer and another who is currently in his fourth month of a one-year tenure. This influx of new people enriches FiPR’s organizational culture and decision-making with new perspectives and energy.

To be more effective in a growing organization, we have begun to streamline and standardize internal processes, particularly in the face of unforeseen events. We have tackled these challenges with the help of technological and traditional organization tools, with staff feedback sessions and with clearer and more consistent communications. We also continue to iterate and better define FiPR’s purpose and role within Puerto Rico’s third sector and are beginning to communicate it to our members and partners.

If you are a grantmaker seeking to improve the lives of the marginalized, become a member to connect with other philanthropic entities and amplify your impact.


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