Support Native people and Native nations

Percent of 2023 grantmaking to support Native people and Native nations
Why it’s important to us

We believe that investing in Native people and Native nations is one of the highest impact things we can do.

The challenges facing Native communities are profound. For example, if you overlay a map of child poverty in our region with the boundaries of reservations there is significant overlap.

But philanthropic impact is not just about addressing a profound need. Impact comes from investing in extraordinary people and institutions to address that need. It comes from investing in big ideas for change. We see extraordinary people and institutions with big ideas throughout Native nations and Native communities in our region. Read more about our commitment to support Native nations and Native people.

How we’re doing

Across all our grantmaking, our support of Native people and Native nations dropped from 68% in 2022 to 19% in 2023. This major difference comes from seeding two community trust funds totaling $100M - $50M in 2022 to support Native people in the region and $50M in 2023 to support Black people in the region. If we remove these two $50M commitments from overall funding calculations, our support of Native people and Native nations held relatively steady, landing at 40% in 2022 and 41% in 2023.

We are regularly referenced as one of the top funders in the country in total funding that supports Native communities and issues. The recognition is nice, but at the same time, we would love to see the big national funders give more to Native communities and knock us down the list!

What’s next

We are committed to influencing the field of philanthropy to invest more to benefit Native people. We want to encourage more funders to consider the unique challenges and unique strengths of Native communities in their grantmaking strategies. We have experience we hope could be helpful to others.

We continue to seek out opportunities to invest in the self-determination of Native nations and people, building upon our relationships and understanding of the community opportunities we can help support.