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Reversal of post-GFC grants slump tipped

A significant finding of the Grants in Australia 2017 study was the failure of corporate grants and philanthropic money to recover to levels seen before the 2008-2009 global financial crash.

Caitriona Fay

Philanthropic funds halved as a primary source of grants in 2009, and have remained static since, apart from a spike in 2012.

Even so, philanthropic funds have been a more important source than corporate funding in most years of our survey, and as the edgier end of the grants spectrum, they may give us a glimpse of the future.

Philanthropic grantmaker Caitriona Fay, of Perpetual, has begun to see a reversal of the post-GFC funding slump.

But the former AIGM Grantmaker of the Year (2012) also predicts new money will come with a shake-up of funding structures, as wealthy donors, the corporate sector and a new breed of tech-savvy givers re-enter the fray.

 "We're seeing more people come back to philanthropy now. We did see a drop in the number of private ancillary funds established during those post-GFC years, but we're starting to see that increase again," Ms Fay said.

And this could be a positive sign for NFPs.

"We'd expect to see not just more funds coming into the community sector but also more philanthropists with different interests and approaches to their giving. All that bodes well for a healthier funding eco-system," Ms Fay said. 

This is an edited version of of an article that first appeared in Grants Management Intelligence. To read an extended version of this article become an AIGM member now.

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