Threshold Foundation 2007 Grants List

Democracy Committee
Total Grants $342,000

“To save the democracy we thought we had, we must take democracy to where it’s never been” – Frances Moore Lappé To save our democracy we must put citizens at the center of the problem solving. We must ask, “How corrupt has our system of government become?” “Why are Americans voting in such low numbers, especially low income people, the young, marginalized constituencies and the formerly incarcerated?” In 2007, the committee supported efforts to: ensure integrity in election processes and voting equipment; empower marginalized communities to register, vote and challenge barriers to voting access; limit the influence of big money special interests in governmental processes so that they do not enjoy favored status or unfair access to decision makers.


Arizona Advocacy Network

A statewide progressive coalition working for economic security, environmental protection and social justice by making political power accessible to all Arizonans, regardless of socio-economic conditions, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity or geography. Its mission is to build a broad-based, non-partisan coalition of grassroots and advocacy organizations and leaders throughout Arizona that develops and strengthens leadership, promotes social justice, and articulates and advocates a peoples' agenda for Arizona.

$30,000 – Democracy & Elections Project
Phoenix, AZ |

California Clean Money Campaign

Works to bring about progressive social change through education about campaign finance reform; specifically, full public financing of California state elections. Its mission is 1) to educate organizations and the general public about the alarming, non-stop escalation of political campaign costs; 2) to foster understanding of how money in politics distorts public policy, deters potential candidates from running, and compromises the entire democratic process; and 3) to present an effective alternative to an open and accountable government that is responsive to the needs of all Californians.

$30,000 – General Support
Los Angeles, CA |

Center for Civic Action

Seeks to engage voters in socially responsible policies and support organizations and emerging leaders. Through its Statewide Clean Elections Campaign, CCA hopes to assist in winning statewide clean elections for New Mexico.

$40,000 – Statewide Clean Election Campaign
Albuquerque, NM |

Columbus Institute for Contemporary Journalism

Dedicated to promoting media independence through alternative and diverse voices. Its outlets are the internet, a bimonthly journal, book publishing, radio programs and video production. For its 2008 Election Protection project, CICJ will organize a grassroots coalition to investigate, report on, and monitor the electronic voting system in Ohio.

$12,000 – 2008 Election Protection
Columbus, OH |

Democracy Unlimited of Humbolt County / CA Center for Community Democracy

Educating citizens regarding the corporate seizure of our government, DUHC has a demonstrated history of successfully designing and implementing innovative grassroots strategies that exercise democratic power over corporations. Building from its own sucesses, its Community Rights Project will produce tools to assist other communities interested in passing ordinances to forbid corporate political contributions.

$30,000 – Community Rights Project
Eureka, CA |

Families United for Racial and Economic Equality

A multiracial, woman led membership organization made up of low-income and no-income workers, FUREE organizes to affect the welfare system so that all people's work is valued and all people have the right to choose their own destinies and earn the economic means to live them out. The Electoral Engagement for Power Project uses political education, leadership development and grassroots mobilization to increase voter engagement and turnout of low-income families in New York City.

$30,000 – Electoral Engagement for Power
Brooklyn, NY |

Latina Initiative

A non-partisan voter outreach and civic engagement organization whose mission is to cultivate, support and maintain the civic involvement of Latinas in Colorado. Latina Initiative is the premier nonprofit increasing civic engagement of the Latina community.

$30,000 – General Support
Denver, CO |

League of Independent Voters

Organizes 17-35 year olds to build a progressive governing majority in their lifetime. It develops leaders and builds political power to fight for public policies which reflect their core values and seeks to build a progressive governing majority in our lifetime. The League's Unlock the Vote project in PA focuses on increasing voter turnout and awareness about voting generally among ex-offenders in the Pittsburgh area (Allegheny County).

$30,000 – Pennsylvania League's Unlock the Vote Project
Brooklyn, NY |

A groundbreaking public database, illuminates the connection between campaign donations and legislative votes in unprecedented ways. Elected officials collect large sums of money to run their campaigns, and have been suspected of paying back campaign contributors with special access and favorable laws. makes money/vote connections transparent, to help citizens hold their legislators accountable.

$30,000 – Outreach
Berkeley, CA |

Velvet Revolution

Dedicated to clean, transparent, and accountable government. Its Election Protection Strike force for 2008 will work with partners and whistleblowers to investigate and expose election fraud issues in order to educate the public and officials before the next election.

$25,000 – Election Protection Strike Force 2008
Washington, DC |

Voter Action / International Humanities Center

Provides financial, legal, research and logistical support for grassroots efforts with the goal of ensuring the integrity of elections in the United States. A lawsuit was filed in state court on January 14, 2005. The primary purpose of this action is to obtain a permanent injunction against use of the voting machines that have been linked to the problems in the 2004 general election.

$55,000 – General support
Seattle , WA |

Sustainable Planet Committee
Total Grants $352,000

How do we meet the needs of people now without compromising the needs of future generations? How do we bring all human activities into harmony with nature for the benefit of all beings? To face these questions, we must transform both human culture and technology to live within the physical limits of the local and global ecosystems. Most urgently, this implies protecting threatened ecosystems to preserve biodiversity and prevent extinction. This in turn will require addressing global ecological issues such as climate change, empowering local and indigenous communities and deploying new clean technologies. In 2007, this committee funded in three areas of focus: Community-based Solutions, Ecological Hotspots, and Averting Mass Extinction.


Alliance for Sustainable Colorado

Works to achieve environmental, economic and social sustainability in Colorado through building broad support among individuals, nonprofit organizations, businesses and government. The Alliance facilitates relationships and common goals and agendas among individuals, nonprofit organizations, businesses and government to unify support behind jointly backed policy initiatives that consider long-term impacts. It provides the nucleus for a statewide sustainability movement for Colorado and a model for sustainability movements in other states.

$25,000 – General support
Denver, CO |

Business Alliance for Local Living Economies

A rapidly growing alliance of 35 local business networks comprising over 12,000 entrepreneurs and small company owners from across the U.S. and Canada who are collaborating to build diversified local economies that support community life and natural systems. It is its mission to catalyze, strengthen, and connect these local networks.

$20,000 – General support
San Francisco, CA |

California Academy of Sciences

Enables scientists to conduct vital research around the Bay Area, across the United States, and in the world's hotspots of biodiversity. It plays an important role in empowering teachers across the state with resources and training, and providing education outreach programs directly to underserved youth. Steinhart Aquarium and world-class exhibits are one example. As a project of California Academy of Sciences, the mission of Center for Biodiversity Research and Information (CBRI) is to foster and disseminate integrative, multidisciplinary research based on the biodiversity data residing in CAS specimen collections. CBRI applies a wide range of geospatial tools and analysis to museum biodiversity data to understand and communicate changing patterns of species distributions.

$35,000 – Center for Biodiversity Research and Information
San Francisco, CA |

Energy Action Coalition / Earth Island Institute

A coalition of more than 40 organizations from across the US and Canada, founded and led by youth to help support and strengthen the student and youth clean energy movement in North America. Funding supports the Lobby Day and Rally components of Power Shift 2007.

$25,000 – Power Shift 2007
Washington, DC |

Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide

Gives public interest lawyers and scientists around the world the skills and resources they need to protect the environment through law. Its advocates serve low-income communities around the world, helping citizens strengthen and enforce laws to protect themselves and their communities from toxic pollution and environmental degradation. Its advocates are building a sustainable future by helping citizens participate in policy decisions about the environment. By giving grassroots advocates access to critical legal and scientific resources, E-LAW strengthens these advocates to challenge environmental abuses and pursue environmental justice.

$25,000 – General Support
Eugene, OR |

Friends of Calakmul

Works to conserve 350,000 acres of prime jaguar habitat in the southwest Buffer Zone of the Calakmul Biosphere Reserve, by providing local owners with economic benefits derived from conservation of their land. To date, FOC has signed landmark agreements with more than 200 families that permanently protect more than 250,000 acres of rainforest.

$25,000 – General support
Tahoe City, CA |

Global Cooling / Planetwork

An informal group of collaborating scientists from the US and UK examining an idea for creating a controlled global cooling to balance global warming resulting from burning fossil fuel. Its Cloud Seeding to Avert Catastrophic Global Warming project will assess and develop a scheme for mitigating global warming via low lying maritime clouds.

$25,000 – Cloud Seeding to Avert Catastrophic Global Warming
Boulder, CO |

Global Response

Empowers people of all ages, cultures, and nationalities to protect the environment by creating partnerships for effective citizen action. At the request of indigenous peoples and grassroots organizations, Global Response organizes urgent international letter campaigns to help communities prevent many kinds of environmental destruction. Global Response involves young people as well as adults in these campaigns to develop in them the values and skills for global citizen cooperation and earth stewardship.

$30,000 – General support
Boulder, CO |

Green Empowerment

Promotes community-based renewable energy, potable water delivery and related watershed restoration internationally to generate social and environmental progress. It emphasizes local leadership, community participation, and long-term economic and environmental sustainability.

$20,000 – General support
Portland, OR |

National Council of Churches

For 25 years the NCC has worked through its 100,000 local churches and 45 million members to mobilize the faith community around such issues as global warming, energy, water conservation, toxics, and sustainability. Its Faithful Stewardship campaign will mobilize America’s faith community around the global extinction crisis.

$25,000 – Faithful Stewardship’s Project to Mobilize America's Faith Community on the Global Extinction Crisis
New York, NY |

Red de Permacultura en el Peru

An NGO of permaculture experts skilled in Amazon sustainability projects. The Rainforest Protection-Achual Sustainable Harvests Project supports the Achuales, a native people of the Peruvian Amazon, who wish to protect their 4,000 acres of native rainforest land through stabilization of their native community, permanent agriculture and reforestation.

$14,500 – Rainforest Protection-Achual Sustainable Harvests Project
Pucallpa, Peru

The Regeneration Project

Seeks to deepen the connection between faith and ecology. TRP educates and encourages faith leaders and their communities, across all religions and denominations, about their responsibility to be good stewards of Creation.

$25,000 – Interfaith Power and Light Campaign
San Francisco, CA |

Species Alliance

Works to raise public awareness of the impending mass extinction and the threat to Earth's life support systems due to this loss of biodiversity. Through films and other media, its website, and outreach, it seeks to ignite a new sense of community empowerment and purpose, in order to stimulate creative and effective changes in public policies and human behavior that will assure a healthy future for all life on Earth.

$37,500 – General Support
Emeryville, CA |

Sustainable Connections

Works with local, independently owned businesses that have the autonomy to make any transformational change in their business that they can imagine to reexamine where we buy goods and services, how we consume energy, grow and distribute our food, build homes, and even, how we define success in business.

$20,000 – General support
Bellingham, WA |

Funding Circles

GSFA Funding Circle
Total Grants $177,000

Gulf South Allied Funders (GSAF) is a donor initiative formed in response to the devastation by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Its objectives include: • Generating at least three years of steady financial support from individual donors, donor communities and foundations, for equitable rebuilding of the Gulf South. • Discussing the ongoing human rights violations in the region, and the ways in which the very personal tragedies of the people in the area have national implications. • Building the ties between donor communities in order to strengthen our ability to work together strategically. • Raising the capacity and visibility of the Twenty-First Century Foundation (21CF) - one of the few national and publicly endowed Black foundations in the United States. • Facilitating positive changes in public policy.


Twenty First Century Foundation

The destruction caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita changed the lives of thousands of individuals and families along the Gulf Coast. 21CF responded within days of the disaster, by establishing the Hurricane Katrina Recovery Fund, with a mission to provide targeted support to rebuild the lives of black and low-income people and communities directly impacted by the hurricanes. This special initiative involves collaborating with partner organizations in the affected regions and mobilizing individuals and organizational allies from different parts of the country to ensure that resources get to the people who need them most. Its priority is to make strategic grants for relief, recovery, and advocacy efforts that provide a voice for all people in the rebuilding plans for the region, and that promote long-term equitable solutions.

$177,000 – Hurricane Katrina Recovery Fund
New York, NY |

Restorative Justice Funding Circle
Total Grants $146,000

The mission of the Restorative Justice Funding Circle is to promote humane alternatives to the current modus operandi of American criminal justice. It supports efforts to (1) prevent imprisonment, particularly lengthy, Draconian sentences; (2) transform imprisonment from a period of suffering and debilitation into a period of healing, growth and empowerment, including victim-offender dialogue and reconciliation, spiritual and emotional healing, and vocational endowment; (3) diagnose and treat prisoners with mental health and/or substance abuse problems; (4) support prisoners’ families during and after incarceration; and (5) steward and mentor prisoners when they return home. In 2007, the Funding Circle focused on endeavors to transform, heal, motivate, and empower prisoners, all with the principal goal of reducing recidivism and uplifting the communities to which ex-prisoners return.


Freedom Project

Supports the transformation of prisoners into peacemakers. It offers trainings in concrete skills of Nonviolent Communication and mindfulness leading to reconciliation with ourselves, our loved ones and the community. Its work addresses the healing of relationships ruptured by violence and the forging of community founded on genuine safety through connection.

$23,500 – General support
Seattle, WA |

Insight Prison Project

A community organization that believes community members need to play an active role in the prisons surrounding a community. IPP is dedicated to creating and conducting effective programs for inmate rehabilitation and to support the reinstatement of rehabilitation as a core operating principle within the penal system.

$28,500 – General support
San Rafael, CA |

Manalive Violence Prevention Programs

Conducts direct services, training, and community action activities designed to impact the cycle of violence that devastates the San Francisco community. Its mission is to end violence, especially men's violence against women and its programs support this.

$20,500 – General support
San Francisco, CA |

Mediation Works

Empowers individuals and organizations to resolve their differences peacefully. It teaches conflict resolution skills and provides mediation services, thereby building understanding and respect in its diverse community.

$13,000 – Empowering Incarcerated Youth
Medford, OR |

Stop Prisoner Rape

A national human rights organization seeking to end sexual violence against women, men and youth in all forms of detention. It works to advocate for policies that ensure institutional accountability, to change society's attitudes toward prisoner rape, and to promote access to resources for survivors of sexual assault behind bars.

$25,500 – Survivor Connections Project
Los Angeles, CA |

The Treatment Advocacy Center

Dedicated to eliminating legal and clinical barriers to timely and humane treatment for Americans with severe brain disorders who are not receiving appropriate medical care. Focusing on schizophrenia and manic-depressive illness (bipolar disorder), it works to prevent the devastating consequences of non-treatment: homelessness, suicide, victimization, worsening of symptoms, violence, and incarceration.

$15,500 – Manual for Implementing Assisted Outpatient Treatment
Arlington, VA |

Urban Justice Center

Engages in legal services and grassroots and systemic advocacy for members of marginalized populations. Its Rights for Imprisoned People with Psychiatric Disorders is the only grassroots, self-governing, direct-action organizing group in the country that is fighting to reverse current trends and end the criminalization of mental illness.

$19,500 – Rights for Imprisoned People with Psychiatric Disabilities
New York, NY |

International Microcredit Funding Circle
Total Grants $148,000

The International Microcredit Funding Circle funds microlending institutions in regions of the world where people are living in poverty. We direct funds through existing microfinance institutions that primarily lend to women, and that provide training in business practices, and if necessary, technical assistance. We seek opportunities in which the money gets recycled into a lending pool and becomes a permanent endowment for change. Microlending empowers people with ‘an arm and a leg up’ to sustainable self-sufficiency; it preserves their dignity and promotes self-esteem in the process, rather than providing a handout, which can be disempowering.


Friendship Bridge

Provides small business loans to women in Guatemala and Vietnam who have the energy and foresight to emerge from the shadows of war and long-standing poverty. In addition, Friendship Bridge helps organize and support village-based health projects while it also provides educational scholarships to over 700 rural school age children.

$34,000 – Credit and Education program in Guatemala
Evergreen, CO |

The first online platform for retail microfinance lending, allows individuals to lend as little as $25 to specific micro-businesses in the developing world. It works with a network of microfinance institutions (MFIs) who use its website as a marketplace to attract debt for their clients. Its mission is to connect people through lending for the sake of alleviating poverty.

$25,000 – Web and Cell based Microfinance
San Francisco, CA |

NamasteDirect / Namaste Foundation

Dedicated to providing loan funds for rural first-time women borrowers in Central America who have no other source of credit. NamasteDirect links donors with borrowers through providing donors with information on the loan cycle and the community where their funds were distributed as microcredit loans.

$34,000 – NamasteDirect's Las Mujeres Rurales 100+ Group
San Francisco, CA |

Permacultura America Latina

Works to teach and preserve permaculture and create models of sustainable agriculture, appropriate housing and alternative technology in Central and South America. The organization's mission is directed towards indigenous communities, ethnic minorities, women's groups and farmers.

$25,000 – Permabanco project
Santa Fe, NM |

Small Enterprise Foundation

A developmental microfinance institution with the goal of working towards the elimination of poverty and unemployment in a sustainable manner by providing credit for self employment, combined with savings mobilization and a methodology that substantially increases the poor’s chances of successful self-employment.

$30,000 – Microloans program Limpopo
Province, South Africa |

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