Funding poses challenges for Hispanic nonprofits

Hispanics make up 13 percent of the U.S. population, but nonprofits serving them get only 1.5 percent of private philanthropic dollars, a situation a new effort hopes to correct, an article says.

The article, “HIP to the Gap,” published by the Monitor Group, focuses on a creative funding initiative designed to funnel dollars to nonprofits serving Hispanics.

The Funders’ Collaborative for Strong Latino Communities, spearheaded by Hispanics in Philanthropy, a San Francisco-based association of Hispanic nonprofits that works to increase funding and build Latino leaders, was developed in 1999 to bridge the gap.

In its first four years, the collaborative has raised $17 million from 113 donors to fund the work of small and medium sized Latino nonprofits, the article says.

North Carolina, which has 134 nonprofits serving Latinos and the  fastest growing Hispanic population in the U.S., up more than 400 percent from 1990 to 2000, is leading the way for the collaborative funding effort.

The first step in North Carolina was to raise awareness of Latino nonprofits and the opportunities for funding them, and by 2003 the state’s effort had amassed a pool of $2 million, and made its inaugural round of grants to 22 nonprofit in January of this year.

Half the nonprofits received one-year startup grants, while the remainder received three-year operating grants designed to build capacity.

Hispanics in Philanthropy is working on similar initiatives in 14 other states, and expects the effort to continue for five more years, granting a minimum of $10 million a year to Hispanic nonprofits.

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