The California-based Latino Community Foundation (LCF) is building a movement of civically engaged philanthropic leaders, investing in and supporting Latino-led organizations, and mobilizing political participation of Latinos in the state. In the lead up to the 2020 presidential election, LCF launched the largest campaign to mobilize Latino voters in California. Additionally, LCF has supported over 375 grassroots, predominantly Latino-led nonprofits through strategic grantmaking and capacity building support.
In 2016, LCF transitioned from a fiscally-sponsored group serving the San Francisco Bay Area to an independent statewide organization. Today, LCF has 21 staff members and an annual grantmaking budget of $6 million. In light of its fast-paced growth, increased geographic scope, and its growing role as a grantmaker in its own right, LCF’s development and program staff juggle a robust grants calendar alongside many other responsibilities.
In early 2023, when the need became clear for additional capacity for grant writing and complex grant reporting, LCF reached out to Elevate at the recommendation of a peer organization. LCF’s leadership sought additional grant and report writing support so that staff could focus on stewarding partnerships and implementing programs.
Given LCF’s immediate need for assistance to meet its grant reporting requirements, LCF engaged Elevate for an Ongoing Writing Retainer. The OWR is a streamlined Elevate service designed specifically to meet the needs of organizations that are looking to boost their writing capacity. LCF was assigned an experienced grant writer who quickly acquainted themselves with the organization and its programming and began drafting, editing, and submitting reports to LCF’s funding partners.
After seeing the impact of having a capable writer prepare their grant reports, the team at LCF began assigning their Elevate writer funding proposals as well as reports. The Elevate grant writer meets with LCF regularly to receive assignments, confirm details and deadlines, and discuss the information required to prepare grant and report submissions. Elevate handles each step of the drafting process—from planning, drafting, editing, and attachment gathering – through submission of the document to the funding partner.
With Elevate’s support developing effective grant proposals and reports, LCF development and program staff can now prioritize other crucial organizational commitments and partnership engagements with the confidence that their submissions will be capably handled through their Ongoing Writing Retainer. In the first six months of the partnership, the Elevate team has prepared 10 funder reports and 2 proposals. Notably, Elevate developed new grant proposal language around LCF’s plans to establish a Promotora Cooperative. The Cooperative will support these vital – and often unpaid – Community Health Workers to connect Latino families with essential community services, while equipping Promotoras with a formal vehicle to drive their economic growth.
LCF exists to unleash the power of Latinos in California. They fulfill their mission by building a movement of civically engaged philanthropic leaders, investing in Latino-led organizations, and increasing political participation of Latinos in California.
It has been an absolute pleasure to work with the team at Elevate. They are professional, organized, and incredibly effective at telling our story to our funding partners. I’d recommend the OWR service to any organization that needs a boost in capacity to write grant proposals and reports.