A national network of funders supporting strategic, innovative, and effective solutions to homelessness

2023 Funders Institute Agenda

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Please note: This agenda is subject to change without notice.   

For more information about our speakers, check out our speaker biographies.

Agenda last updated: July16, 2023  

Monday, July 17

9:00 – 9:30a ET

Check-in, Breakfast, and Networking 

Join us for breakfast and networking before the Funders Institute officially kicks off.  

If you have opted for JOINT registration (Funders Institute and NAEH conference), Funders Together will have your NAEH conference registration materials. DO NOT check in at the NAEH registration desk.  

9:30 – 10:50a ET

Understanding Accountability through Love & Disruption 

Our 2023 Funders Institute opens with reflections on the moment in which we find ourselves as housing justice funders. We will describe why we choose to lean into accountability and trust for the Funders Institute, identifying how it shows up in our specific roles: as grantmakers, advocates, members of the housing justice movement, and as individuals. We will offer an understanding of accountability rooted in our values of “love and disruption” as a framework to inform subsequent sessions.  

Then, we will hear keynote remarks from Temi F. Bennett, co-CEO of if, A Foundation for Radical Possibility. Temi will show us what it can look like for a foundation to hold itself accountable to its values of justice and liberation within its structure, organizational culture, grantmaking, and its role among philanthropic peers.  


  • Temi Bennett, Co-CEO, if, A Foundation for Radical Possibility  
  • Amanda Andere, CEO, Funders Together to End Homelessness 
  • Michael Durham, Director of Networks, Funders Together to End Homelessness 

11:00a – 12:00p ET

Embracing Accountability and Examining Trust in Grantmaking for Housing Justice  

Accountability is best understood within contexts of relationships. In this session, we will explore the ways funders should be accountable to the communities we serve. Building off Temi’s keynote remarks in conversation with Amanda, we will explore the role of power within the grantor-grantee relationship and how identity informs trustworthiness. Participants will explore what it would look like for philanthropy to think of grantmaking as reparative – including considering reparations itself - acknowledging that its wealth was built on chattel slavery and stolen land.  


  • Temi Bennett, Co-CEO, if, A Foundation for Radical Possibility  
  • Tanya Edelin, Board Member, if, A Foundation for Radical Possibility  

12:00 – 1:00p ET

Lunch provided onsite

1:00 – 1:45p ET

National Conference on Ending Homelessness Opening Plenary with Ann Oliva, CEO of National Alliance to End Homelessness

Please note: the opening plenary is limited to those who have also jointly registered for the National Conference on Ending Homelessness.

2:00 – 3:15p ET

Advocating for Government Accountability  

After lunch and the NAEH opening plenary, we will name the continual political barriers that threaten progress made towards housing justice and explore accountability opportunities through public-private partnerships. Building off recent examples of federal and local governments’ regressive - and sometimes hypocritical - approaches to homelessness and the affordable housing crisis, we will examine lessons that affect every community. We will lean into philanthropy’s roles as advocates in the movement for housing justice, from both a grantmaking perspective and direct engagement in advocacy, exploring what it means to hold our government partners accountable in this work. Attendees will leave with insights into concrete advocacy strategies through the lens of love and disruption, in preparation for the election season ahead.


  • Daniel del Pielago, Housing Director, Empower DC
  • Almas Sayeed, Vice President of Public Partnerships, Liberty Hill Foundation
  • Peggy Bailey, Vice President for Housing and Income Security, Center for Budget and Policy Priorities

5:00p ET

Funder Networking Reception

Off-site, location TBA

Tuesday, July 18

8:30 - 9:00a ET

Breakfast available

Join us starting at 8:30 for a light breakfast before the program begins at 9am. 

9:00 – 10:30a ET

Shifting Power to People with Lived Expertise: Strategies for Philanthropy

Please note, participation in Day 2 is limited to those who have opted for JOINT registration. 

“Centering people with lived experience” is meaningless without an analysis of power: how it’s built, shared, and ceded. Funders Together recently concluded its second Foundations for Racial Equity (FRE) community of practice, a two-year learning-to-action journey that culminated in the development of a resource naming strategies philanthropy can employ to build and shift power to people with lived experience. This session will preview insights from this resource and include time for participants to gain valuable insights, feedback, and advice through case consultations from their peers about their own housing justice work.  

If you are interested in receiving feedback and advice from peers about something you're working on, please reach out to Stephanie Chan, who can help you shape your question and share the session format with you. 


Wednesday, July 19

8:30 – 9:30a ET

Becoming Pro-Black and Pro-Indigenous: Accountability to One Another 

Please note, participation in Day 3 is limited to those who have opted for JOINT registration. 

Funders Together’s vision statement names our aspiration to become pro-Black and pro-Indigenous, a commitment that transcends more customary workplace values like diversity, equity, and inclusion. Concluding our Funders Institute in this final session, participants will engage in what it means to be pro-Black and pro-Indigenous in our work for housing justice. We will make space for honest assessment of all our efforts as individuals to transform our institutions, bearing in mind our evolving understanding of loving accountability and paying attention to how our racial/ethnic identities affect our responsibilities. Attendees should come prepared for candid dialogue on the work of racial justice and liberation. This session aims to cultivate deeper understanding of solidarity and lead to relationships of accountability and support.  

Coffee and tea will be available. We encourage those interested in breakfast to grab it from the conference's continental breakfast spread and bring it to this session.  


Showing 1 reaction

We joined Funders Together because we believe in the power of philanthropy to play a major role in ending homelessness, and we know we have much to learn from funders across the country.

-Christine Marge, Director of Housing and Financial Stability at United Way of Greater Los Angeles

I am thankful for the local partnerships here in the Pacific Northwest that we’ve been able to create and nurture thanks to the work of Funders Together. Having so many of the right players at the table makes our conversations – and all of our efforts – all the richer and more effective.

-David Wertheimer, Deputy Director at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Very often a lack of jobs and money is not the cause of poverty, but the symptom. The cause may lie deeper in our failure to give our fellow citizens a fair chance to develop their own capacities, in a lack of education and training, in a lack of medical care and housing, in a lack of decent communities in which to live and bring up their children.

-President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964 State of the Union Address

Funders Together has given me a platform to engage the other funders in my community. Our local funding community has improved greatly to support housing first models and align of resources towards ending homelessness.

-Leslie Strnisha, Vice President at Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland

Our family foundation convenes local funders and key community stakeholders around strategies to end homelessness in Houston. Funders Together members have been invaluable mentors to us in this effort, traveling to our community to share their expertise and examples of best practices from around the nation.

-Nancy Frees Fountain, Managing Director at The Frees Foundation

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