- Assets: $29,312,651 (2011)
- Grants Received: $6,193,085 (2011)
- Grants Awarded: $5,344,838 (2011)
Established in 1954, the New World Foundation (NWF) describes its grant-making strategy as one that works "to support the building of social movements by supporting organizing, which builds a sustainable mass base of activists in viable organizations." Anita McCormick Blaine (1866-1954), who was the daughter of industrialist Cyrus Hall McCormick, created the Foundation. An advocate of one world government, she supported many leftist politicians and in 1948 endorsed Henry Wallace for U.S. President on the Progressive Party ticket.
Dedicated to what it terms "progressive ideals," NWF offers start-up grants that generally range from $15,000 to $20,000 apiece for new "equal rights" projects and anti-war initiatives. Other priorities include "labor and environmental justice issues, … concerns for the environment, human rights, racial and gender equality, sustainable economic development, the welfare of families, and the civic character of our society." Viewing the United States as a nation rife with discrimination and injustice against minorities, NWF works for "social change on behalf of the poor and exploited."
The New World Foundation's grant-making program is structured into three major Funds:
Phoenix Fund for Workers & Communities: Established in 1996, this program derides "the realities of globalization … imposed by multinational corporations and free trade agreements … [which have] already brought us a widening wealth gap … within American society." To address these issues, the Phoenix Fund invests in "frontline organizations" that are building "economic justice movements" and "solidarity campaigns" in the U.S. and Mexico. The Fund currently supports more than 20 collaborative projects in 15 metropolitan areas -- projects that support the creation of progressive unions, promote living wage initiatives, and finance immigrant worker centers that advocate on behalf of illegal immigrants' rights.
Global Environmental Health & Justice Fund: This program is founded on the premise that: "Dangerous, polluting factories are not built in Beverly Hills, but in poor neighborhoods … Today, the front lines of environmental action are found in communities of the poor, the working class and people of color all over the world."
New Majority Fund: According to NWF, "The 21st century has begun with … [America's] national power in the hands of militant conservatives, the country isolated from the rest of the world, and the planet itself in the balance. This is a troubled and reactionary time, when we must choose whether to concede or to rebuild a progressive vision of America." To help reduce the political and social influence of conservatives, this Fund provides financial support for leftist organizations that are "building the infrastructure for political participation out of which new electoral alliances are forming, and in turn, new majorities can grow and govern."
Additional NWF programs include:
- The Southern Organizing program, which deals with "tax reform, education inequities, economic justice, and legislative accountability"
- The California Initiative, which focuses on "social service, environmental justice, interfaith congregations, immigrant rights, … youth, … [and] economic justice and corporate accountability issues"
- The Alston/Bannerman Fellowship program, which "acknowledge[s] and celebrate[s] long-term community activists of color with a sabbatical award"
- The Take Action Fund for Youth and Community Renewal, which seeks to "combat the media image of American teenagers as menacing and out of control"
- The Media and Education Fund, which strives to shift public attitudes to the left by "penetrat[ing] mainstream news media with ideas, research and reporting"; "support[ing] and sustain[ing] independent alternative media; mak[ing] effective use of official press, radio and cable, labor press, student press, religious press and foreign language press"; and "teach[ing] media skills to activists"
NWF is a member organization of the International Human Rights Funders Group, a network of more than six-dozen grantmakers dedicated to financing leftist organizations and causes.
NWF strongly supports the race- and gender-preference policies commonly known as affirmative action, candidly declaring its willingness to create “a concrete developmental plan aimed at achieving" racial and ethnic diversity in its staff.
The Capital Research Center, which rates the political leanings of nonprofit organizations, places the New World Foundation at the far left end of the political spectrum.
Among the recent recipients of NWF philanthropy are Alliance for Global Justice; the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation; the Center for Constitutional Rights; Earthjustice; the Independent Media Institute; the National Organization for Women Legal Defense and Education Fund; Peace Action Network; Planned Parenthood; the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund; The Nation Foundation; and the Tides Center and the Tides Foundation.
To view a list of additional noteworthy grantees of the New World Foundation, click here.
NWF was chaired by Hillary Clinton from 1982 to 1988. During Mrs. Clinton's tenure, the Foundation gave financial backing to such organizations as groups with ties to the most extreme elements of the African National Congress; the Christic Institute; the Committees in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (which sought to bring a communist revolution to Central America); Grassroots International (which had direct ties to Yasser Arafat's PLO); and the National Lawyers Guild.
(Information on grantees and monetary amounts courtesy of The Foundation Center, GuideStar, ActivistCash, the Capital Research Center and Undue Influence)