Achievement at a glance
The SDG Philanthropy Platform has launched work in Kenya, Colombia, Indonesia, and Ghana and created SDGfunders.org that provides grantmakers with information on the SDGs. After two years of continuous advocacy there is a stronger understanding, and participation of the philanthropic sector in the dialogue on the SDGs, and a willingness by the UN and governments to give more room to foundations and their grantees. The Platform has demonstrated how to create more collaborative processes and a more enabling environment and help build capacity of sector. Currently community of interested organizations includes 1800 organizations, of which more than 850 are foundations.
Challenges faced in implementation
Many foundations, especially smaller ones, had no access to useful country-specific information on the development plans and SDGs and tend to operate in silos. In four pilot countries which were all launched between late 2014 and mid-2015, the main challenge was to foster the interest of foundations to new SDG agenda. Prior to launch convening and organized multistakeholder dialogues SDG Philanthropy Platform performed extensive mapping of foundations, advocacy, networking focusing on harnessing the interest of “champions” foundations first.
Another challenge is low capacity for data of philanthropic foundations as well as lack of trust, institutions and mechanisms in place for data collection and sharing.
Third, with the adoption of the new agenda and the process of localizing the SDGs in the countries, the development ecosystems’ processes, policies and institutions have become even more complex and less familiar to the philanthropic community. Clear guidance, roadmaps and entry points are necessary.
The SDG Philanthropy Platform guides the philanthropic sector, and enabled access and influencing opportunities to, high-level global events, sharing perspectives on the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships in advancing the SDGs in pilot countries. As the national development plans and processes of the SDG localization are being set up, SDG Philanthropy Platform continues to facilitate mechanisms and processes for philanthropic sector to engage systematically in the official processes, institutions, via participatory mechanism. In addition, the Platform continues to harness leadership and interest of the sector to enable foundations to convene more purposefully and share strategies with government and the UN, and to more easily track progress.
Key next steps include:
- Expanding the Platform operations to new countries;
- Developing guides and tools for SDG Ecosystem mapping in pilot countries;
- Build capacity of foundations for data collection and sharing;
- Setting up catalytic fund to foster philanthropic engagement in selected SDGs in pilot countries.
Foundations and their grantees, the United Nations, Governments
Greater understanding by the philanthropy sector of the SDG agenda and process. Greater understanding by the UN system, governments, private sector and civil society of the role and potential of the philanthropy sector to contribute to sustainable development