Philanthropy Terms



(n) The acts or process of writing or speaking in favor of, or supporting, a cause

annual gift

(n) Contributions made to nonprofit agencies in support of their yearly fundraising

annual report

(n) A voluntary report issued by a foundation, nonprofit organization, or corporate grantmaking program that provides financial data describing their grantmaking activities


(n, pl. ties) Annual payment of an income or allowance


(n) A more or less permanent increase in value due to an upward change in the market price or due to an inherent quality or qualities that enhance the desirability of, and hence the demand for, a product over time


(n) The amount of capital or principal –money, stocks, bonds, real estate, or other resources – controlled by a foundation or corporate giving program

asset mapping

(n) Finding the positive values in a community and building on those values so as to create a stronger community; important character-building qualities found to help children be successful



(n) The grantee receiving funds from a foundation or corporate giving program is the beneficiary, although society benefits as well; a person receiving a gift through a will


(n) The inclination to be charitable – benevolent (adj.)


(v) To give or leave someone by will; to hand down – bequeathal (n)


(n) The act of giving or passing on to another



(n) Innate ability for growth, development, or accomplishment


(n) The representational net worth of a business; used to describe fundraising for a building or major piece of equipment


(adj) related to giving to the needy

charitable deduction

(n) The portion of a donation that can be written off of the donor’s income, subject to federal, or sometimes state, income tax


(n) Money or help given to aid the needy; an organization, fund, or institution whose purpose is to aid those in need – derived from the Christian concept of caritas, meaning love of one’s neighbor

civic engagement

(n) A person’s connections with the life of their communities – Robert Putnam


(v) To cooperate or work with another person or organization – collaboration (n), collaborator (n)

common good

(n) Working together with other members for the greater benefit of all; promotes the welfare of the community

community capital

(see also social capital) (n) Personal investment of time through social interactions that builds trust and enables participants to act together more effectively to pursue shared objectives – Robert Putnam


(v) To give something to someone – contribution (n), contributor (n), contributive (adj.), contributory (adj.), contributively (adv.)



(adj) Reliable; can be counted on to follow through

development fundraising

(n) A term used to define the total process of organizational or institutional fundraising, frequently inclusive of public relations and alumni affairs

distribution committee

(n) The board responsible for making grant decisions


(n) Variety; including people of different cultures or races


(n) One who gives, donates, or contributes; individual or organization that makes a grant or contribution



(v) To manage thriftily; to use sparingly – economizer (n)


(adj) Able to produce the desired outcome


(n) Identification with and understanding the feelings of another person – empathetic (adj.), empathic (adj.)


(v) To authorize; to delegate; to license


(n) Funds intended to be kept permanently and invested to provide income for continued support of an organization

enlightened self-interest

(n) Sacrificing time and resources to the benefit of the whole, which, in turn, benefits self; understanding that what is good for the community is good for me


(adj) Equal treatment of all concerned


(n) A usually large or extensive piece of land containing a large house; in law, the nature, degree, and extent of ownership or use of property; total market value of all forms of property which a person owns; total assets of a deceased person

estate planning

(n) Planning for the management of all of an individual’s assets for the benefit of the person and his or her heirs

estate taxes

(n) A tax usually progressive in character levied upon the gross estate of a deceased person before its division


(adj) Relating to or of ethics; conforming to right principles of conduct as accepted by a specific profession – ethically (adv.)



(adj) Achieving a proper balance of conflicting interests; a fair decision; impartial

family foundation

(n) An independent private foundation whose funds are derived from members of a single family


(adj) Relating to or pertaining to the holding of something in trust

food insecurity

(n) The risk or fear of not having consistent access to food that meets people’s dietary needs and food preferences; not being sure one will have enough food or the right food to feel full, grow, and be healthy


(n) An organization created from designated funds from which the income is distributed as grants to not-for-profit organizations or, in some cases, to people


(n) Soliciting money to benefit a cause or organization



(n) Sharing freely; abundant; overflowing – generously (adv.), generous (adj.)

gift giving

(v) When a contribution is made


(n) A purpose; the terminal point of a race or journey deed


(v) A financial donation given to support a person, organization, project or program. Most grants are awarded to not-for-profit organizations; to allow; to consent to; to admit something as being the truth; in law, to transfer property – grant, (n) Grantee (n), grantor (n), granter (n), grantmaker (n)

grant proposal

(n) The document submitted to the foundation or other potential funding source in which the organization presents its request for support

grassroots organization

(n) A group consisting of local participants who work together originally to improve upon their community and extend to a broader basis


(n) The state of appreciation and gratefulness; thankfulness



(n) A person who inherits another’s property or title


(n) A person who is concerned for human welfare, especially through philanthropy



(n) A legal deed or contract; a contract obligating one party to work another for a specified period of time – indenture (v)

in-kind contributions

(n) Contributions of equipment, supplies, or other tangible property as distinguished from monetary grants



(n, pl. –ies) Personal property, money, and other valuables that are bequeathed by will; anything that is handed down from an ancestor, predecessor, or earlier era


matching grant

(n) A grant that is made to equal funds provided by another donor


needs assessment

(n) The study of an organization’s program or situation to determine what activity or activities should be initiated or expanded to satisfy a need



(n, pl. –ies) Endless time; eternity; the quality or state of being perpetual


(n) An individual known for his or her exceptional generosities in support of charitable causes


request for proposal (RFP)

(n) When the government, or a foundation, issues a new contract or grant program, it sends out RFPs to agencies that might be qualified to participate.


scholarship funds

(n) A grant to an educational institution or organization to provide financial support to assist students, most often for students at the undergraduate level

serial reciprocity

(n) A term defining the process occurring when one person gives to another, by means of time, talent or treasure, and thus causes a continual chain of giving to occur in a linear rather than circular pattern– defined


(n) The conducting, supervising, or managing of something; especially: the careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care



(adj.) Exempted from tax; bearing tax-free interest on federal or state income


(n) A portion of one’s income given voluntarily for the support of a religious institution – tithe (v), tither (n)

trust capital

(n) Many positive experiences with another person (like doing what you say you’ll do) build trust over time and cannot easily be undermined


(n) A member of a governing board



(n) One who offers himself for a service of his own free will – volunteer (v) to give service


(v) The act of performing a service or good work for others without pay