In spring 2011 Grant Makers for Effective Organisations (GEO) surveyed all Oak Foundation programme staff and interviewed select staff from Oak and peer organisations to better understand re-granting practices. GEO summarised its findings into a report to Oak Foundation in August 2011. A panel of Oak staff used the report to draw up these guidelines.
These guidelines will help programme staff develop a re-granting project and establish the optimum re-granting relationship. The aim of these guidelines is not to prescribe a particular approach or structure for re-granting but to bring together the experience in re-granting of Oak programme staff and their peers in other foundations. Each section of the guide ends with examples, mostly from Oak Foundation's work, that illuminate the guidelines.
- The type of relationship and the type of intermediary should be shaped by the purpose of the grant. Clarity about goals and objectives is fundamental to ensuring an appropriate structure, a positive relationship with the intermediary and ultimately the success of the project.
- Efficiency may not be the primary purpose of a re-granting relationship. Many worthwhile regranting projects are time-consuming for programme staff.
- If efficiency is the primary aim, re-granting may not be the only option. Consider other ways to manage a group of grants, such as using a consultant or employing staff directly.
- Oak Foundation staff identified the three aspects of re-granting as particularly challenging: identifying a good intermediary partner, calculating overhead costs, assessing impact.