The Donner Canadian Foundation was established in 1950 by William H. Donner. In the mid-1960s, the Foundation began to focus on specific program interests, among these, research on public policy. The Donner family chose Canada’s centennial year, 1967, to embark on a course of professional grantmaking that has contributed well over $150 million to almost 2,500 projects across Canada and around the world.
In addition to ongoing funding of public policy research, the Foundation supports environmental, international development, and social service projects. Every year, the Donner Book Prize honours the best book on Canadian public policy, and the Foundation’s lecture series features some of the world’s most influential speakers. The Foundation is guided by a Board of Governors composed of representatives of the Donner family and prominent Canadians from a variety of fields.
Granting:In 2016, the Donner Canadian Foundation supported more than 60 charitable organizations. The Foundation devoted 15 percent of its granting to public policy research and education, and over 25 percent to environment and wildlife preservation. The Foundation also directed almost 20 percent of its granting toward international development and human rights, and over 15 percent to organizations delivering social services. The Foundation’s remaining grants sustained a variety of worthy projects.
Requests for funding:The Donner Canadian Foundation does not regularly respond to letters of inquiry or unsolicited requests for funding.
However, it does maintain files about charitable organizations and their work. The Foundation uses this information – along with proactive research and input from advisors – in its search for high-potential projects. To inform this search, charitable organizations may send the Foundation’s Executive Director a two- to three-page description of their goals and programs (firstname.lastname@example.org) . If there is a potential match between this work and the interests of the Foundation, Staff will contact the charity for more information
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