This report ‘Form and Function’ reflects the research undertaken into the governance, financial management and grantmaking practice of twenty one South African philanthropic foundations during the course of 2015.
This report was to assist existing foundations as well as emerging entities to benchmark their practice. Based on an extensive questionnaire, interviews were done with 21 foundations through their representatives including foundation staff as well as the founders where appropriate.
The report produced some interesting and unexpected results some of which are outlined below:
- Funded operational costs 100 per cent
- Prepared to create leverage to attract other funds 90 per cent
- Interested in collaboration 90 per cent
- Funded innovation 80 per cent
- Funded start-up organisations 77 per cent
- Provided for general purposes/undesignated funding 66 per cent
- Had permanently invested capital base 66 per cent
- Had endowment exceeding R1 billion 66 per cent
- Funded litigation 30 per cent
Other findings of the report can be summarised as follows:
- Collective 2015 grantmaking spend of the 21 participating foundations: R763,8 million
- On average, endowed foundations paid out between 4-5 per cent of their capital each year • Annual grantmaking spend ranged from R300 000 to R125 million.
- Key focus areas of funding included education, health, social justice, welfare, entrepreneurship, the arts and environment.