The mission of the Four Freedoms Fund (FFF) is to secure the full integration of immigrants as active participants in our democracy. To do so, FFF seeks to support and strengthen the ability of the immigrant rights field by playing three key roles – as an investor, convener and strategizer.
- Investor – Since 2003, FFF has made more than $56 million in grants to 182 grantees across the country. Multiple funding streams have helped build organizational and aggregate capacity in policy advocacy, civic engagement, response to harsh enforcement, strategic communications and organizational sustainability.
- Convener – Grants reward and incentivize effective field-national coordination. Multiple FFF-sponsored meetings bring groups together to learn best practices, teach each other and build relationships of trust and cooperation. Staff and funders also mediate field-national relations when necessary.
- Strategizer – FFF’s reach and research allow it to analyze huge amounts of strategic communication quickly. Its Steering Committee and staff are always looking ahead for grantmaking opportunities that meet immediate needs, fill gaps or position the field for “the next big thing.” FFF’s nimbleness is a major factor in its effectiveness.
The Fund’s work is guided by the long-term vision of immigrants and refugees fully integrated into American civic life. In particular, FFF supports state and regional coalitions that work in the three areas above and which connect up to nationally coordinated campaigns and down to grassroots, often ethnic-specific groups.
FFF awards grants to foster a strong, national immigrant-rights field by:
- Supporting a coherent infrastructure of effective local, state and regional organizations;
- Providing multi-year capacity-building funding and peer-learning opportunities to benefit anchor organizations;
- Building the communications capacities of key grantees;
- Commissioning research to identify strategic funding opportunities;
- Sponsoring in-person, telephonic and webinar briefings for funders; and
- Operating as a “link tank,” coordinating with other grantmakers and grantee networks.
Grantmaking and Initiatives
Entering its tenth year, the Fund has invested more than $56 million to 182 grantees nationally. Grants are made in geographic areas with sizable and/or growing immigrant populations. Additionally, the Fund offers supplemental support to grantees by hosting convenings and providing technical assistance.
Based on the needs of the immigrant rights field, FFF has incorporated specialized initiatives into its work, including Strategic Communications, Civic Participation, Capacity Building and Enforcement Reform. Since its inception, FFF has demonstrated its commitment and capacity to move nimbly and focus its grantmaking strategy to address the ever-changing needs and challenges in the immigrant rights field and helping to build its infrastructure for the long run.
Current funders include the Carnegie Corporation of New York; Ford Foundation; Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund; Open Society Institute; Horace Hagedorn Foundation; J.M. Kaplan Fund; Gill Foundation; Unbound Philanthropy; Western Union Foundation; and JPB Foundation.
FFF co-founders Geri Mannion and Taryn Higashi were named the 2009 co-recipients of the Council on Foundations’ Robert W. Scrivner Award for Creative Grantmaking. Read more . . .