Philanthropy’s Response to Gun Violence and Mass Shootings
Resources to Guide Philanthropic Response
Gun violence is a constant threat to communities across the United States. While mass shootings capture media attention and public outrage, gun violence is a specter over many Americans’ daily lives.
Funders across the country have been called to action to address gun violence and mass shootings, sometimes in their own geography or where they have staff or nonprofit partners.
This resource page will be frequently updated to reflect new guidance and efforts foundations are undertaking in this area.
If you have resources or response funds you would like to share, please email Brian Kastner.
- Council Resource: Advice from the Field: Responding to Mass Casualty Events
- Council Resource: Disaster Assistance and Emergency Hardship Funds: Charitable Assistance for Individuals and Communities
- Center for Disaster Philanthropy hosts a page with facts and research about Mass Shootings.
- How Can We Stem The Rising Tide of Gun Violence from The California Wellness Foundation
- Gun Violence Prevention Infographic – Grantmakers in Health
- The Gun Violence Archive maintains up-to-date statistics about gun violence in America.
- What the data says about gun deaths in the U.S. from Pew Research Center
- Inside Philanthropy maintains a list of funders working on Violence Prevention and a corresponding report, “Giving for Violence Prevention”
Lessons Learned from Funders
- The One Fund Boston: Lessons for Leaders from the Initiatives on Cities, Boston University
- Disaster Relief: The Growing Role of CSR Teams from the Florida Blue Foundation
- When A Tragedy Hits, A Community Responds: Key Learnings in the Aftermath of Umpqua Community College shootings from The Ford Family Foundation
- The First 72 Hours from The Ford Family Foundation
- “There Is No Manual.” Inside a Community Foundation’s Response to a Mass Shooting from Ventura County Community Foundation
- “An Epidemic Within the Pandemic.” How Eight Funders Back Gun Violence Prevention from Inside Philanthropy
- The Critical Role Of Philanthropy In Researching Solutions To Gun Violence from Nina Vinik of the Joyce Foundation, in Health Affairs
- To Stop Gun Violence, Grant Makers Need to Follow the Covid-19 Collaborative Playbook from Burgundi Allison, Annie E. Casey Foundation, and David Brotherton, Kendeda Fund, in the Chronicle of Philanthropy
- Gun Violence, a Public Health Epidemic, a collection of resources from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
- Gun Violence Prevention Network from CFLeads (for community foundations)
Sample Documents for Funders
- Sample Victims Fund Executive Order from Ventura County Community Foundation
- Sample Agreement: Grantor to Grantee Providing Services to Victims from Ventura County Community Foundation
- Sample Fund Disbursements Protocol: The Conejo Valley Victims Fund from Ventura County Community Foundation
- (2022) Uvalde Strong Fund hosted by the Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country and San Antonio Area Foundation
- (2022) Buffalo Together Community Response Fund coordinated by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo and United Way of Buffalo & Erie County
- (Ongoing) The Fund for a Safer Future is a donor collaborative comprised of 30 diverse private foundations and individual donors dedicated to reducing gun violence in America. FSF pools expertise and financial resources to build the research base on this issue, makes grants that support common-sense policy reform, both nationally and in targeted regions across the country, and delivers resources to front-line organizations shaping the gun violence prevention movement. The Fund directly invests approximately $3 million a year, and its funding partners have made more than $135 million in aligned grants since 2011
- (Ongoing) Chicago Fund for Safe and Peaceful Communities – This fund is the administrator for the larger Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities, which consists of more than 30 foundations focused on addressing gun violence in Chicago. The foundations in this fund do not pool money, but manage and track grants and individual funders through a consulting firm.
- (Ongoing) Hope and Heal Fund: Collaborative of ten regional and family foundations emphasizing a public health approach to reducing gun violence, including suicide. Members include the Akonadi Foundation, Blue Shield of California Foundation, California Endowment, California Wellness Foundation, Heising-Simons Foundation, Liberty Hill, Rosenberg Foundation, Sierra Health Foundation, Weingart Foundation, and Wintemute Family Foundation
- (2019) Conejo Valley Victims Fund established by Ventura County Community Foundation, in coordination with the City of Thousand Oaks, California Community Foundation, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Amgen Foundation, Sherwood Cares, and numerous others
- (2016-2017) OneOrlando Fund established by Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer in partnership with Our Fund Foundation and Central Florida Foundation
This was originally published by the Council on Foundations.