Solidaire Five-Year Retrospective: 2018-2022

Solidaire Five-Year Retrospective 2018 - 2022

INFRASTRUCTURE TO LIBERATE WEALTH

Since 2018 Solidaire has set its sights on creating the infrastructure to liberate wealth for intersectional social movements and to build lasting progressive power. Our network has moved critical resources to those at the frontlines of emerging and historical movements for racial, gender, and climate justice. We have intentionally built teams that have the experience and analysis necessary to support our donor members as they strive to transform themselves and the consolidation of power through engaging in bold wealth distribution.

Through cultivating meaningful relationships, equitable collaborations with those fighting on the frontlines, and innovating our grantmaking practices, we have become a trusted and supportive partner to grassroots formations. Solidaire aims to organize with our allies and push the sector toward a model of philanthropy that goes beyond charity toward resourcing social movements resources at the scale necessary to transform society and build a multiracial democracy. Solidaire is working with an urgency that matches that of our movement partners to lay the foundation for a new vision of a future rooted in inclusion, equity, and justice.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
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    OUR MEMBERS

    The Solidaire membership is the heartbeat of Solidaire. Building a loving, bold, and rigorous community is foundational to who we have become. Solidaire members are the lifeline that allows us to be in right relationship with each other, our communities, and the social movements we are a part of. Through excellent staff and member-led work and programming, Solidaire membership has increased in size as well as in our opportunities for connection within our unwavering commitment to radical giving and intersectional social movements.

     CURRENT

    Membership Snapshot

    Culture-sustainable-work-culture

    Members

    Individual members (66%)

    Institutional Members (34%)

    Member Growth

    Click or touch the tabs on the left to see the membership totals for that fiscal year:

    FY 2018

    Total Members: 108
    Number of States: 18
    Individual Members: 82 (76%)
    Institutional Members: 26 (24%)

    Map of membership at the end of fiscal year 2018

    *Membership data from fiscal years 2018 - 2020 are based on estimates

    FY 2019

    Total Members: 122growth by 13%
    Number of States: 19
    Individual Members: 96 (79%)
    Institutional Members: 26 (21%)
    Map of membership at the end of fiscal year 2019

    *Membership data from fiscal years 2018 - 2020 are based on estimates

    FY 2020

    Total Members: 142 Member Growth 16%
    Number of States: 22
    Individual Members: 111 (78%)
    Institutional Members: 31 (29%)

    Map of membership at the end of fiscal year 2020

    *Membership data from fiscal years 2018 - 2020 are based on estimates

    FY 2021

    Total Members: 222 Member Growth 56%
    Number of States: 25
    Individual Members: 166 (75%)
    Institutional Members: 56 (25%)Map of membership at the end of fiscal year 2021

    *The uprisings after the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor drew many new members inspired by Solidaire’s track record funding Black-led organizing. We responded to the moment by launching the Black Liberation Pooled Fund and making a call for other funders to follow suit

    FY 2022

    Total Members: 304Member Growth 37%
    Number of States: 31
    Individual Members: 202 (66%)
    Institutional Members: 102 (34%)

    Map of membership at the end of fiscal year 2022

    *Our growth in institutional members brings diversity to our network, including class, race, and age. Institutional members also afford Solidaire a unique opportunity to impact foundations and the philanthropic sector.

    Program Highlights

    Hover or tap on each illustration:

    • Flyer for Black Liberation is for Everybody

      Black Liberation Is for Everybody Series

      The Black Liberation Is for Everybody series is a four-part series and a component of Solidaire’s commitment to support Black-led movements and to deepen our members’ engagement in the struggle for Black liberation.

    • Changing Paradigms Series: Learn and connect to drive change within your philanthropic institution. White text on blue box with a starbust in the background

      Changing Paradigm Series

      Solidarity Circles are member-driven spaces, where members educate and organize each other toward taking action. Solidarity circles are designed to address varying topics, questions, or aspects of our members’ lives that matter to us, and how we show up in solidarity with social justice movements.

    • Defund the Police for Funders

      Defund the Police for Funders was created by the Decarceration Working Group to help donors and foundations understand the call to action, learn how to talk about it within philanthropy, and how to avoid common mistakes among funders.

    • Funding Freedom: Philanthropy and the Palestinian Freedom movement flyer

      Funding Freedom: Philanthropy and the Palestinian Liberation Movement

      Solidaire Action published the report, Funding Freedom which outlines the attacks on organizations that support Palestinian rights and strategies for giving sustainably.

    • Solidairty Circles: Member-led Organizing: Jewish Solidarity, Parenting & wealth, spending down: tending the tender fire, power over patriarch, executive directors: leading with joy

      Member-Led Solidarity Circles

      Solidarity Circles are member-driven spaces, where members educate and organize each other toward taking action. Solidarity circles are designed to address varying topics, questions, or aspects of our members’ lives that matter to us, and how we show up in solidarity with social justice movements.

    • Power Concedes nothing Learning Series

      Power Concedes Nothing Series

      This three-session study group is based on the book Power Concedes Nothing: How Grassroots Organizing Wins Elections and is led by the book's editors Linda Burnham, Max Elbaum, and María Poblet. 

    • Flyer for Solidarity Circle for Executive Directors. Image of Leading With Joy a brightly colored yellow book with butterflies and birds

      Solidarity Circle for Exective Directors

      This ten-part series supports members in leadership roles to thrive in their philanthropic transformation work. Vini Bhansali and Akaya Windwood lead based on their book Leading with Joy – Practices for Uncertain Times

    OUR MOVEMENT PARTNERS

    We believe in the power of social movements to transform our society toward racial, gender, and climate justice. We believe in the power of Black and Indigenous leadership and the efficacy of frontline communities to solve the biggest problems of our time. Solidaire is purposeful in building relationships with our movement partner grantees that inform our grantmaking practices, identify trends, and expand our support of movement ecosystems for the long term.

     FISCAL YEAR 2022

    Movement Partners Snapshot

    0

    movement partners

    0%

    are multi-year partnerships

    0%

    Black-led organizations in overall grantmaking

    0%

    Indigenous-led organizations in the Movement Infrastructure Fund

    $0K

    average grant to general operating budgets

    $0M

    moved to the frontlines of social change

    CURRENT

    Grant vehicles

    BLACK LIBERATION POOLED FUND

    invests in a robust ecosystem of Black-led social change organizations.

    JANISHA R. GABRIEL MOVEMENT PROTECTION FUND

    protects our movements and leaders through funding urgent security needs.

    MOVEMENT INFRASTRUCTURE FUND

    provides long-term scaffolding for organizations at the frontlines of justice movements.

    RAVI KHANNA SOCIAL JUSTICE FUNDS PARTNERSHIPS

    advances the impact of social justice funds targeting communities they best serve.

    Key Lessons in Grantmaking

    Hover or tap on each highlight to learn more:

    MPG-highlights-Movement-Directed

    MOVEMENT DIRECTED

    We seek continuous guidance from movement leaders through the committees we established to design and escort our pooled funds.

    MPG-highlights-Sustaining-Support

    SUSTAINING SUPPORT

    We aid movement organizations by funding the ecosystem of resource providers, networks, and alliances to create a healthy infrastructure. We are moving larger grants with multi-year commitments.

    MPG-highlights-Reducing-Barriers

    REDUCING BARRIERS

    Our administrative processes include one to two-question applications, video applications, and no written reporting. Instead, our grant practitioners take the burden from our movement partners by doing our own due diligence.

    MPG-highlights-Accompany-Movement

    ACCOMPANY MOVEMENT

    We are responding and amplifying the call of our movement partners when they tell us how philanthropy can better serve the movement. Partners have asked for backend infrastructure strengthening, peer-to-peer learning, additional funding and support navigating the often opaque work of organizing and leveraging partnerships with donors and philanthropy.

    MPG-highlights-Fostering-Innovation

    FOSTERING INNOVATION

    We trust Black and Indigenous movement leaders and provide seed funding that allows experimentation. We fund initiatives with lasting visions such as healing and safety practices, land justice initiatives, and political strategy.

    Movement Partner Highlights

    Secure your Identity graphic of a person using a tablet

    In 2020, Equality Labs received Movement Protection Fund funding to scale their systems to support more movement leaders in trauma-informed physical and digital security

    RESPONSIVE TO THE MOMENT:

    The Janisha R. Gabriel Movement Protection Fund

    The demand for racial justice in the summer of 2020 saw a dangerous and targeted backlash in right-wing violence and digital harassment of those who work for peace and justice. Solidaire responded by launching the Janisha R. Gabriel Movement Protection Fund. We moved $3,209,200 to the urgent needs of movement leaders facing threats of violence, state surveillance, and online harassment campaigns. Through this new vehicle, funds were distributed for physical, digital, and legal security to 86 applicants, who typically received funds within a week. We responded to the moment through swift innovation and have now folded this funding into our Movement Infrastructure Fund.

    FOLLOWING THE CALL OF MOVEMENT PARTNERS:

    Southern Power Fund

    When our movement partners at Highlander Center, Southerners on New Ground, Project South, and Alternate Roots told us that funding the South was urgent, our members leaped into action by providing seed funding for the Southern Power Fund in 2020. Organizing in the South is drastically underfunded despite being the frontline of the struggle for climate justice and against harmful political policies impacting the nation. The foresight and trust of our members helped Southern Power Fund to be ready to move critical resources to abortion providers and reproductive justice advocacy after the SCOTUS ruling on Roe v. Wade. In addition, it moved immediately to support mutual aid efforts after the flooding in Central Appalachia in the summer of 2022.

    Image of two women passing out food with Tshirts that read T.O.P.S.

    Southern Power Fund movement partner The Ordinary People Society (TOPS)

    OUR CULTURE

    We strive to cultivate a sustainable, joyful work culture while centering our commitment to movements. We work to create and promote a workplace where diverse individuals can thrive while advancing Solidaire’s collective goals. Our staff members are a cross-class, multiracial, multicultural group of people rooted in movement work. Since 2018 we have greatly expanded our Finance, Operations & Culture department.

    We pivoted from primarily rapid response giving to long-term multi-year general operating support through our pooled funds, became an independent 501(c)3 entity in 2020, and ramped up our 501(c)4 giving. This allowed us to bring on Movement Partnerships and Grantmaking Practitioners to build deeper relationships with our grantee partners. Solidaire runs lean, with supporting services representing 11% of our budget over the last two years. 89% of our budget goes into the frontlines as direct grants.

     2018 - 2022

    Our Team's Growth

    staff icon

    Staff Members

    staff icon

    Board of Directors

    Key Lessons in Our Culture

    Hover or tap on each highlight to learn more:

    Culture-sustainable-work-culture

    SUSTAINABLE WORK CULTURE

    Solidaire Network prioritizes its staff’s well-being, health and work-life balance. Solidaire employees are critical to our ambitious theory of liberation goals.  How we compensate them and how we express our gratitude for their talent, commitment, and hard work is central to our success now and into the future.

    Culture-growth

    INTENTIONAL GROWTH

    We are intentional in our efforts to recruit and retain a community of experienced, high performing and values-aligned employees. We seek employees who share the desire to be transformational rather than merely transactional in manifesting our collective vision for racial, gender and climate justice.

    Culture-Collective-Care

    COLLECTIVE CARE

    Our focus on organizational health and culture is constantly rising to meet emerging needs including the pandemic and honoring cultural traditions for bereavement. We celebrate our entire network including staff, Board members, consultants, and our members.

    Highlights of Solidaire Culture

    The New Rules of Old Money

     

    October 17, 2021 | Harper's Bazaar
    by Nancy Jo Sales

    Image of Susan and Regan Pritzker

    Philanthropy used to be all about black-tie galas and dedicated wings. But the scions of some of America’s richest families are now partnering with progressive organizations to democratize generational wealth and put their money where the movement is.

    "It’s Not Just About Moving Money." How Solidaire Is Challenging Wealth, Power and Privilege

    October 26, 2022 | Inside Philanthropy
    by Dawn Wolfe

    Image of Solidaire Board Retreat 2022, Smiling group in front of redwood trees

    Solidaire is a philanthropy-serving organization whose ultimate goal is to upend conventional philanthropy. Additionally, the organization believes that the systems that have allowed the concentration of power and wealth “must be fundamentally reimagined” to fulfill the group’s vision for social and racial justice.

    FINANCE & INVESTMENTS

    Finance and Investments

    $
    in 501(C)3 Grants
    $
    in 501(C)4 Grants
    Graph that shows $36.5 million dollars given to C3 grants from fiscal year 2018 - 2022. The bar chart breaks up the total by fiscal year: $1 million in 2018; $1.6 million in 2019, $1.7 million in 2020; $23 million in 2021; and $9.1 millkion in 2022. There are footnotes that read: Fiscal years 2018 - 2020 are unaudited estimates; Fiscal years 2021-2022 totals are audited financial, accrual based. Footnote for FY 2022 reads: This total is lower than FY 2021 because our second year of commitments, distributed in 2022, were recorded in the previous year
    Graph that shows $2.35 million dollars given to C4 grants from fiscal year 2018 - 2022. The bar chart breaks up the total by fiscal year: $120,000 in 2018; $117,000 in 2019, $179,000 in 2020; $667,500 in 2021; and $1,265,000 in 2022. There are footnotes that read: Fiscal Years 2018 - 2019 fiscally sponsored through Forward Fund; FY 2020 - 2022 fiscally sponsored through Tides Advocacy

    Finance and Investments Highlights

    Image of a person standing in a farm in front of rows of crops

    Integrated Capital

    Black Artists healing in Real Time Listen on Spotify with three artists pictured below

    Attracting Large Gifts

    Illustration by Alexis Chivir-ter Tsegba