Who We Are

Who We Are

The Philanthropy Leadership Network (PLN) is a unique, dynamic partnership that harnesses the collective capacity of a network of independent development trusts and community grantmakers. The Forum was launched in 2005 to advance, build and strengthen sustainable community-based development in Southern Africa. With a growing pool of grantmaker leaders, the PLN is a leadership and peer learning network committed to social justice grantmaking as a powerful vehicle for change.

In a region marked by massive poverty and inequality, thousands of small non-profit organisations throughout Southern Africa undertake vital social development work in both urban and rural communities. To do so consistently and with greater impact, they urgently require increased access to funds, resources, knowledge and skills.

No-one does as much to sustain and develop poor communities as do the poor themselves. Recognising this, the PLN works to build on the energies, assets and traditions of mutual aid in communities. It strives to form innovative partnerships with business, philanthropists, government and donors that can connect communities with the very significant resources for development in the region. Ultimately, our vision is to inspire a vibrant culture of giving, citizen mobilization and multi-sector collaboration that can defeat poverty once and for all.

Funding for community-based organisations is often difficult for larger donors to manage effectively. Typically, corporate funders, private philanthropists, government agencies, international foundations and development institutions lack the administrative capacity to manage, oversee and evaluate numerous small grants.

This is where the experienced community grantmakers of the PLN can step in by facilitating a more efficient and extensive direction of funds and resources to community based organisations working on the ground. PLN members have the essential knowledge, experience, technical expertise and social capital to build local capacity for future progress and self-reliance.

Community grantmakers bring a range of other assets to their partnerships:

  • Ongoing relationships of trust with communities
  • In-depth knowledge at the local level
  • Ability to identify, target and have impact on critical community challenges
  • A collaborative, hands-on approach to development
  • Proven financial management, accountability and reporting systems
  • On-site capacity for effective monitoring and evaluation
  • Ability to leverage a range of funding and other resources for long term, sustainable solutions
  • A commitment to broad-based community empowerment and participation-
  • An approach that addresses the root causes of poverty and not just its symptoms

With the renaming of the Southern African Community Grantmakers Leadership Forum (SACGLF) to the Philanthropy Leadership Netor (PLN) community grantmakers are creating a powerful new platform for effective partnerships for sustainable community based development. Community-based development is a keystone of social transformation.

Join with us to create long-lasting change, an environment in which community-based organizations can grow and thrive, and a just society where no-one is excluded or left behind. Connect with us by clicking here.