Press Release - October 12, 2017

Silicon Valley Community Foundation Announces Five New Grantmaking Focus Areas

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – Silicon Valley Community Foundation has adopted five new grantmaking strategies designed to address the region’s most challenging problems, the organization announced today.

SVCF will focus on five key areas: civic participation, education, financial stability, housing and transportation, and immigration.

“SVCF has selected the new emphases for our discretionary grantmaking program with care and deliberation,” said Emmett D. Carson, CEO and president of SVCF. “We are confident that by focusing on these areas, we can continue our legacy of improving lives in Silicon Valley. These issues – housing, transportation, immigration, education, financial stability and civic participation – are central to the sustainability of Silicon Valley as a great place to live, work and play.”  

Five Grantmaking Strategies

  • Civic participation: SVCF will award grants to initiatives that promote greater civic participation through open government, especially among low-income residents and people of color.
  • Education: Grants will be awarded to initiatives that accelerate student success in the Common Core education standards, including professional development for educators in fourth and fifth grades.
  • Financial stability: SVCF will award grants to initiatives that provide people with free tax preparation and access to public benefits.
  • Housing and transit: Grants will be awarded to programs and initiatives working to increase affordable housing opportunities and improve access to effective public transit, particularly for low-income people and other vulnerable populations. 
  • Immigration: SVCF will award grants to programs that help ensure the safety and security of immigrants, including programs that provide critical, time-sensitive support, such as “know your rights” information campaigns and legal services to help with deportation defense.

The new focus areas, which SVCF’s board of directors has approved, are the result of a comprehensive review of the grantmaking strategies that SVCF had been implementing since 2008.

That two-year review process was announced in Dec. 2015. Consistent with SVCF’s values, the organization engaged in an open and transparent review process that included numerous community-input meetings, conversations with key stakeholders and expert advisors, public surveys and third-party evaluation of the impact and effectiveness of SVCF’s first eight years of strategic grantmaking.

The first request for proposals (RFP) for the new strategies will be announced by November on SVCF’s website.    

The new strategies were announced at SVCF’s annual Regional Meeting, held at the Santa Clara Convention Center, which meeting marked the culmination of SVCF’s 10th anniversary year.

The event addressed the topic of protecting and upholding the civil rights of all people. Featured speakers were Anthony Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, and Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO and national director of the Anti-Defamation League.

About Silicon Valley Community Foundation

Silicon Valley Community Foundation advances innovative philanthropic solutions to challenging problems. We engage donors and corporations from Silicon Valley, across the country and around the globe to make our region and world better for all. Our passion for helping people and organizations achieve their philanthropic dreams has created a global philanthropic enterprise committed to the belief that possibilities start here. Learn more at