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  Press Release


Cheryl Loe
Communications Project Manager
The Foundation Center
(888) 356-0354, ext. 701

April 2011

Key Facts on Social Justice Grantmaking

Social justice grantmaking accounted for more than 14 percent of grant dollars awarded by the largest U.S. foundations in 2009. Despite concerns about the potential impact of the economic crisis on foundation giving priorities, this share was virtually unchanged from 2008.

Among other key findings in the report:

  • About 11 percent of foundation grants in 2009 went to social justice causes.
  • The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation—the nation's largest grantmaker—was the top funder by total dollars awarded, accounting for more than one-quarter of 2009 giving in this category.
  • The top 25 social justice funders accounted for over 70 percent of such giving in the Foundation Center's latest grants sample.
Key Facts on Social Justice Grantmaking provides an annual update on foundation support for social justice-related activities since the publication of the most recent benchmark study on the topic, Social Justice Grantmaking II (2009). Key Facts on Social Justice Grantmaking can be downloaded at no charge from the Gain Knowledge area of the Foundation Center's web site.

- Read the report» (PDF) Free

About the Foundation Center
Established in 1956 and today supported by close to 550 foundations, the Foundation Center is the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide. Through data, analysis, and training, it connects people who want to change the world to the resources they need to succeed. The Center maintains the most comprehensive database on U.S. and, increasingly, global grantmakers and their grants — a robust, accessible knowledge bank for the sector. It also operates research, education, and training programs designed to advance knowledge of philanthropy at every level. Thousands of people visit the Center's web site each day and are served in its five regional library/learning centers and its network of 450 funding information centers located in public libraries, community foundations, and educational institutions nationwide and beyond. For more information, please visit or call (212) 620-4230.

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