The Civic Engagement Fund (CEF), founded in 2006, aims to increase the capacity of Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian nonprofit organizations, it's community partners, in order that they may better serve their respective communities in a post 9/11 environment. The CEF provides AMEMSA organizations in the Bay Area ofCalifornia with small organizational support grants, technical assistance, and peer learning opportunities.
This brief is based on an external evaluation of the CEF's four-year (2006-2009) program, which comprised two cycles of grant-making, capacity building convenings, and technical assistance support. The methodology consisted of a literature review, focus group discussions with community partners/grantees, and conversations with advisory committee members and AAPIP staff. The 2010 Program was designed in part based on feedback from this evaluation report.
- Capacity building resources are transformative.
- Community partners acknowledge the AMEMSA frame is critical to field building
- Civic Engagement Fund convenings provide a unique space for field building: organizations tapped into this network to develop collaborative proposals during times of crisis.
- Community partners see Civic Engagement Fund staff as an Ally and Advocate. Staff support extends beyond the grant and convenings.
- Participation in the Civic Engagement Fund provides foundations with deeper knowledge of AMEMSA communities.
- The Civic Engagement Fund offers an opportunity to fund AMEMSA communities despite a lack of expertise or human capital and enables advisory committee members to expand and leverage funds.
- The Civic Engagement Fund offers foundations opportunities to engage directly with AMEMSA organizations.