Strategic philanthropic partnerships helped previous administrations move beyond the walls of government and into the communities to make an impact and feel connected. The new administration must again have presence in the field to make sure the voices of communities are prioritized and reflected in programs and policies.
Through public-private partnerships, funders can push the administration to prioritize policies and practices that follow the lead of grassroots organizers and activists. Because philanthropy already has relationships in local communities, funders can partner with the administration to go beyond community engagement and engage in co-governance models and focus on racial justice by using the expertise of those who have been doing this work locally for decades. In addition, fundamental to creating a culture of racial justice, philanthropy should examine how they can create pathways to careers, advisory bodies, and task forces for grassroots organizations and people with lived expertise of housing insecurity.
Another focus is around creating a listening or feedback mechanism that requires the voice of communities, especially those who are most impacted, to be incorporated into any program or policy. Philanthropy can support and facilitate real time feedback from the community on advanced notices or early-stage ideas of program design that can then be used to make necessary changes that center equity and justice prior to being implemented into near final versions.