Our Process

We Start By

At EMA Foundation, we listen to our partners’ needs, trust their expertise, and co-design adaptive support.

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Trust our partners as experts in their work and follow their lead to best meet their needs


Engage our intergenerational staff in our partners’ work and continuously develop our team’s skill sets


Amplify voices from our partners and the people they serve and share their stories through our rhizōma platform


Activate our community with opportunities to turn learnings into action towards equity

Traditional philanthropy models uphold power imbalances and limit potential by prioritizing funder-driven decision making. Grants typically require time-consuming application and reporting processes, and cannot be used to fund operational expenses like salaries or rent. EMA Foundation operates on a trust-based philanthropy model. We build relationships with potential partners to develop a thorough understanding of their needs. Our partners are the experts in their fields, so we build support on their terms via mutual design.

Our Process Includes

multi-year funding

Unrestricted multi-year funding for our partners to allocate resources as they see fit


Operational support from our staff as requested–from designing social media campaigns to community strategizing and more

Coaching &

Subsidized coaching and consulting support for leaders and staff

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Access to our rhizōma resource hub to share stories, present courses, host seminars, and more


Active networking to connect partners with resources, collaborators, and new funding opportunities


Speaking opportunities to increase mission visibility

Partnerships in Practice

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EMA Foundation provides $25,000 of annual financial support to In-Sight Collaborative.

This year's funds are supporting the expansion of In-Sight's mentorship program and facilitating the translation of materials into multiple languages.

Moving forward, EMA and In-Sight will collaborate to expand course offerings in support of humanitarian efforts.

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EMA Foundation facilitates the BYkids Community of Learners, a cohort of ten educators who spent the 2023-24 school year exploring how to integrate BYkids films into their curricula.

That cohort will become instructors in professional development workshops for new educators this summer, with the goal of adding at least 100 new teachers to the Community. EMA will also partner with BYkids to create detailed curriculum guides and integration pathways so teachers can incorporate films with ease.

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To support SafePlace International on its path to sustainable growth, EMA Foundation launched the SafePlace NEXT initiative, fulfilling a $100,000 challenge grant in 2023.

EMA continues to provide annual financial support, underwrites coaching for the SPI leadership team, and provide ongoing capacity support for operations as needed.

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EMA Foundation has supported Children of the Forest's medical program for more than a decade.

EMA also provides staffing support for CoF USA, including the development of a new website, and managing social media campaigns, and working with filmmaker Henry Kinder to create a suite of short films to highlight CoF's mission and programs.

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EMA Foundation collaborates closely with HTL Coalition, providing support through coaching and unrestricted funding as they embark on a growth campaign. Recently, HTL has undergone a significant transition, incorporating as a newly-formed nonprofit organization.

Formerly known as the Juneau Violence Prevention Coalition under AWARE Inc., HTL is now dedicated to regional healing initiatives and systemic change work. EMA Foundation is proud to support HTL on this transformative journey towards greater impact and sustainability.

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Since 2022, EMA Foundation has provided Lighthouse Relief with unrestricted funding of $25K annually. This support has supported Lighthouse Relief in expanding distribution efforts, enhancing information support services, and providing safe housing for vulnerable individuals.

Additionally, EMA Foundation has provided coaching support for Lighthouse Relief's administrative staff, further strengthening their organizational capacity and effectiveness in serving refugees and asylum seekers in Greece.

Join the EMA Network

We support small and emerging under-resourced NGOs doing powerful work in the social impact space with a focus on three primary impact areas: migration, education, and equity. Since our inception in 2001, we’ve built a network of partners, some of whom have been with us for more than a decade.

While we are currently at capacity for financial support of new partners, we always welcome new connections. Access to rhizōma and other kinds of support are available for values-aligned groups. Please reach out to us if you see possibilities for collaboration. Our rhizome is constantly growing, and we’d love to hear and share your story.

Contact us

Our Partners

Impact a global network with a single contribution