AVPN Global Conference 2023 | 20 - 22 June 2023


Philanthropy Support Associations for the Future: action learning to create the networks we need





Date & time

24 April 2019


26 April 2019

About this event

On April 24-26, WINGS will host a peer-learning event in Jamaica, co-hosted by the new Caribbean Network of Foundations, titled “Philanthropy Support Associations for the Future: action learning to create the networks we need. All are welcome to attend, but there will be a special focus on national and regional associations. This meeting is for both emerging and established associations working at the regional and national levels. The objective is to support emerging philanthropic networks and existing associations as a way to develop local resources for civil society and strengthen foundation’s work. Senior-level philanthropy leaders attending will build the capacity of their organizations by learning new knowledge, covering technical issues, as well as thought-leadership in the field.

This meeting will examine the philanthropy support associations of the future, identifying factors that will help and hinder the development of the kinds of associations we want and need. Philanthropy and its context is changing fast, and there will be new challenges and opportunities for philanthropy support associations. There is general agreement that we need a strong global ecosystem of philanthropy support, but there is little knowledge about how we will achieve it. This meeting, and the larger process of recording knowledge about philanthropic association work, will help emerging and existing networks to strengthen their leadership in the philanthropic space, which in turn will strengthen their foundations’ (members) work, and ultimately, civil society.

Philanthropy associations, and specifically national and regional umbrella organizations, can act as a beacon in bringing attention to important issues, connecting and coordinating foundations, building capacity, advocating for and representing the philanthropy field in their context. Yet, there are still many countries without associations, and where they exist they face a fast changing environment and need to adapt.

This global meeting will bring together umbrella associations to reflect not only on our field, but on our successes and failures as associations. We hope to identify best practices and innovations, illustrate different business, organizational, and governance models, and reflect jointly on thought leadership in a fast changing philanthropic landscape.

Beyond practical issues and models, the meeting, based on an interactive and participatory approach, will also cover deeper questions facing this specific type of infrastructure organizations: how to find the right balance between services and thought-leadership, how to mobilize members across divides and differences, how to collaborate with other philanthropy support organizations to collectively strengthen the field, and how to protect and expend the philanthropic sector in times of tensions on the enabling environment.

Meeting Design Commitee:

Andrew Chunilall – Community Foundation Canada
Magdalena Aninat- Center for Philanthropy and Social Investments, Adolfo Ibáñez University in Chile
Caroline Mahfood – Caribbean Network of Foundations
Naila Farouky – Arab Foundations Forum
Evans Okinyi – East African Philanthropy Network
Ingrid Srinath – Centre for Social Impact and Philanthropy, Ashoka University
Felix Oldenburg – German Association of Foundations
Anke Paetsch – German Association of Foundations
Maria Orejas-Chantelot – European Foundation Centre
Natalie Ross – Council on Foundation
Stigmata Tenga – Africa Philanthropy Network

The inputs from meeting will be used to design a guide that will present the functions, models, challenges and innovations of these associations. This tool, which will be made available to all, will leverage our collective knowledge and diverse experiences to help new umbrella organizations develop where they are needed and to strengthen the impact and sustainability of the existing ones.


AVPN Members: $200 USD
Non-Members: $350 USD
* Participants are responsible for their travel and board expenses. A limited amount of scholarships will be available for this meeting for WINGS members. Consult Sarah for questions.

Target Audience: Senior leaders from emerging or established associations, foundations considering or interested in setting up an association. All associations and philanthropy support organizations are welcome, but there will be a special emphasis on place-based associations (national, regional, state, etc.)

Contact: To express initial interest and be added to our communications list about the meeting, please email Sarah Brown-Campello.

Register here.

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