In collaboration with GIFE (Brazil), WINGS co-sponsored a regional meeting on philanthropy in Brazil. The meeting, held in Sao Paulo 21-22 November 2002, focused on ways that the countries in the Latin America-Caribbean (LAC) region can enhance their cooperation and collaboration to promote and support the expansion of philanthropy. View supporting materials below.
This meeting was primarily for the executive directors of grantmaker associations and support organizations in the region and for the leadership of grantmaking foundations in countries where no formal membership association of grantmakers currently exists. About 20 delegates from 11 countries explored the possibility of establishing an informal regional network for the purpose of exchanging information and sharing expertise with colleagues in other countries.
The meeting began with a presentation by Luiz Eduardo Wanderley, a Lecturer Professor of Political Sciences of the Pontifical Catholic University of Sao Paulo, who provided an overview of the political, economic and social context in the region in which philanthropy will develop. He emphasized the important role that civil society must play in nurturing new institutions to promote and sustain philanthropy. Susan Berresford, President of The Ford Foundation, also made a presentation to the delegates at the regional meeting. She emphasized the importance of moving from charity to social change in grantmaking. She also noted the importance of creating infrastructure for the development of the philanthropic sector in Latin America and the critical role that associations of grantmakers can and do play in this regard. She also emphasized the importance of innovation in grantmaking, improving public understanding of philanthropy, communicating achievements, and setting ethical and professional standards for grantmaking.
Delegates talked broadly about the present and future of philanthropy in the region, the infrastructure needed to promote and expand it, financial sustainability, and possible collaborative future actions. They discussed the many cultural, political, and socio-economic differences in the context of, and climate for, philanthropy in their respective countries, and the common opportunities and obstacles that philanthropic organizations confront everyday at the national level. These included issues that are common to all grantmaker support organisations:
- ethics and transparency
- membership development and services
- government relations
- communications and the use of Internet technology
- promotion of philanthropy
- legal and regulatory reform
The two-day meeting offered an opportunity to discuss both the differences and commonalities in philanthropy at the local, national, and international levels and to consider specific actions and/or activities that could strengthen the efforts of national organisations through the exchange of information and expertise. The delegates expressed their intent to have more discussions on these topics during the next year and to hold another meeting in one year’s time to assess progress in enhancing philanthropy in general and in establishing a regional network in particular.
2002 Regional Meeting Supporting Materials: