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Serving Our Collective in 2023
As we say farewell to another year, it’s time to celebrate what we’ve made together and recognize the impact of serving our philanthropic ecosystem. From welcoming new members to deepening connections within our network, the journey we’ve undertaken has been nothing short of extraordinary and we made it all happen thanks to your enthusiasm and dedication.
As we wrap up 2023, let’s take a moment to celebrate our achievements and set our sights on the promising horizon of 2024.
Growth by Serving and ExpandingReflecting on the past, we are proud to see the remarkable growth we’ve achieved as a collective. This year marked the 5th anniversary of having an open membership model, and the progress we’ve witnessed is a testament to the dedication of each of you. Our membership has more than doubled, soaring from 7 members in 2019 to 21 members in 2023.
One of our significant achievements this year was the culmination of our Strategic Planning process. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of our members and your invaluable support, we finalized a roadmap that will guide our collective journey. You can explore the details of our Strategic Plan here.
Serving and Sustaining the Collective
Our commitment to advancing equity in Puerto Rico is at the core of everything we do. We support philanthropic organizations to adopt practices that drive change and effectively utilize their resources. The Filantropía Puerto Rico network is a collective force, supporting each other in implementing transformational philanthropic practices.
To enrich your experience, we’ve launched a member-exclusive Explore Your Membership Webpage. This page was designed for members only with the purpose of having a main site where you can find all the details regarding your membership services for the year from events calendar, to benefits, and working documents. Dive into resources like EL CONVENER to see other funders investments, catch up on our monthly newsletter – the Impact Summary.
Continuing our dedication to enhancing your experience within our network, our integrated dashboard with various metrics collections, allows us to gather feedback and measure engagement during events. Your insights play a crucial role in shaping our services, ensuring they align with your expectations and needs.
This years’ Event Participation Metrics exceed expectations by a 20% increase in attendance:
Building Relationships to Strengthen our Collective EffortsWe recognize that to have deep and reflective conversations that align us as a collective, we need to create spaces for members to get to know each other, interact and build relationships at various levels. These spaces are crucial to develop confidence with each other.
We held quarterly Members Brunches at the headquarters of some of our members. We discussed equity as it traverses multiple issue areas important to the philanthropic sector in Puerto Rico. As a result, we came to a better understanding of the need to find a balance between urban and rural initiatives, consider gender inequity, socialize knowledge, and engage in trust based philanthropy practices.
We didn’t stop there when it came to creating spaces to build trust since we also shared other joyful and leisurely spaces. We had four Member Meetups throughout 2023. During these events, we met up in different locally owned venues to share and connect as a community. These spaces were deeply special because by getting to see each other as people first, we are able to build more trust that can have a positive impact in our relationships as colleagues. Additionally, these spaces were also key to spark conversations about how far we’ve come as philanthropic entities and how to remain accountable to advancing equity moving forward. Thanks for bringing your most authentic selves to these relationship building spaces!
Building Capacity to Invest StrategicallyWe sustain an environment that encourages collective learning, active listening, and co-creation of tools that contribute to strategic conversations. Together, we seek to find solutions to common challenges and maintain our network informed on relevant topics.
Learning Sessions: Somos Filantropía PodcastThe launch of our first podcast series was an absolute success! This space allowed us to uplift the stories of members and on-the-ground organizations alike to expand our understanding of how to advance inclusive and sustainable philanthropic practices. We invite you to listen to some of our 11 episodes.
Learning JourneysFor the second year in a row, we delved into a deeper learning journey through the lens of community based organizations. We visited 3 organizations (Centro de Apoyo Mutuo Las Carolina, Caguas, Barriorization, Manatí, Centro Esperanza, Loíza) all in rural zones of the island to learn how philanthropic investment can impact peoples’ everyday lives. Our journey took us through different community initiatives working on elderly equity, LGBTQ+ cultural memory, and local tourism. You can find more details about our journeys here!
Convening the Philanthropic Ecosystem to Build StrategyAll our events are designed with a purpose, but the end goal is to leverage efforts towards achieving systemic change that benefit the most affected populations in Puerto Rico. That’s why our strategy building events are key spaces to engage in thought-provoking conversations that align actions.
Our 2023 Annual Convening Expand to Align: Collective Action was a complete success thanks to the engagement of our amazing network! This year we asked our members to come ready to imagine how we could build equity for Puerto Rico through collective action. Our main goals were to think through how to expand and align philanthropic efforts moving forward, and yes, we came out of our convening with so many inspiring possibilities for philanthropy on the island. We had many guest speakers from sectors ranging from Academia to public service agencies and also had the highest attendance from our network membership in the audience.
Among the new information we learned were different types of data sets that allow us to have a better understanding of Puerto Rico’s demographics, housing, solar energy federal funding, and the impact of philanthropic investment in education and agriculture. As our convening came to an end, we plan to continue the conversation next year in order to understand how to apply the data and use it strategically to take individual and collective action. We also committed to developing different landscapes for issue areas in order to ensure impact toward inequitable systems. Check out the full experience here!
Our Action Dialogues were spaces that also allowed us to align strategically. Our members are very diverse and we recognize the value of each of their practices. During our Action Dialogues, many of our members shared their own philanthropic practices and how they address and measure their impact towards equity through the work of their organizations. As Filantropía Puerto Rico, we held space to share the data collected through our grantmaking processes survey and other topics such as communities of practice, philanthropic practices that advance equity, and how sharing power can increase impact. Our meetings were very productive spaces to continue cultivating our collective strategy to engage with philanthropic practices that can truly have an impact to advance an equitable PR.
We held 8 action dialogues, find the highlights in our google shared doc.
Expanding Our Impact
Serving our Members is at the heart of what we do, we also support our membership by expanding the social ecosystem with initiatives that implement infrastructure creation and impact structural changes that advance equity.
The Learning to Listen initiative brought together foundations, non-profit organizations, and community leaders to explore listening practices through participatory philanthropy. Additionally, our Collective Intelligence initiative offers a comprehensive view of the sector’s resources and ways philanthropy can address challenges and opportunities in Puerto Rico.
Our community of practice, Robusteciendo la Justicia Social, supports the long-term infrastructure and sustainability of local social justice organizations. From this project, we sustain Compromisos para una recuperación justa, a space facilitating collaboration between non-profit organizations and state and federal government agencies on housing and recovery issues in the archipelago.
The FORWARD Puerto Rico Fund mobilizes investments for infrastructure that advances equity. This collaborative fund seeks funders committed to long-term systemic change, propelling Puerto Rico FORWARD.
To further impact our mission, we have grown our reach with key alliances. We are part of the Funder Listening Community of Practice (FLCP) that supports spaces for organizations like us to advance their mission. This initiative is working on new ways to support foundations as they build feedback and listening practices that reflect and advance equity. We use this community of practice as a tool to find better ways of serving you, better ways of listening to those we seek to help, and to be inspired by what we are able to achieve together.
In closing, we extend our deepest gratitude for your contributions, dedication and collaboration. As we embark on the promising horizon of 2024, let us continue to be a catalyst for equity in Puerto Rico. Together, our impact is stronger.