Training details

access_time 1 hour, 30 minutes

attach_money Free


According to a study published by International Funders for Indigenous Peoples and GrantCraft in 2015, Indigenous peoples are largely left out of philanthropy, which poses a real challenge to creating an even playing field. In the context of US global giving, direct funding to indigenous peoples represents a tiny fraction of total giving. For years, indigenous communities and philanthropic practitioners have been asking, why funders won’t partner with these important rich and diverse communities? Why not include voices and perspectives of indigenous peoples in the many issues that they touch and are impacted by? In response to this challenge, a few indigenous leaders have stepped up to rethink philanthropy in a way that is inclusive of indigenous peoples.  They have designed indigenous-led grantmaking programs that place the decision-making power on the indigenous leader, and include values of reciprocity and community knowledge.

In this video, we are bringing together indigenous leaders from the philanthropic sector that will share how they have redefined grantmaking practices to better serve indigenous communities. This panel will comment on the unique needs of native communities in the South West of the United States, as well as explore the regional and global indigenous-led movements that are gaining traction.  Jim Enote of the Colorado Plateau Foundation will speak to the benefits of running a Native-led grantmaking program and the unique practices that the foundation has developed to support its grantmaking. Myrna Cunningham will address how the Pawanka Fund’s indigenous-led grantmaking efforts is supporting indigenous leaders and promoting learning between local projects and the communities they serve. Teresa Zapeta of the International Indigenous Women’s Forum (FIMI), will share how FIMI is enabling indigenous women to access and mobilize the resources they need around the world.

Thanks to the generous support of Borealis Philanthropy, Candid is offering this video as part of a series to further a variety of conversations on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the social sector. This specific series is free and open to the public.

You can access additional training in this series here.

A Special Welcome to:

  • Executive Directors
  • Development staff
  • Program officers
  • Program managers

Qualifies for
1.5 CFRE point(s)


  • Discover unique challenges that indigenous-led organizations around the world face when trying to access philanthropic funds
  • Describe how indigenous communities are redefining philanthropic practices
  • Compare different approaches to indigenous-led grantmaking
  • Recognize how indigenous-led grantmaking practices could be applied to your grantees or community

Intended audience

  • All levels of experience

Bonus materials

Let us know what you thought of the video and what other types of training you would like to see

We also recommend exploring the Investing in Native Communities portal

For more insights and training on how the social sector is moving the needle on Racial Equity visit

Use the following bookmarks to jump to sections of the training:

0:00:55 What is Candid?

4:23 Investing in Native American communities, with Grace Sato

11:31 The Colorado Plateau Foundation, with Jim Enote

23:07 The PAWANKA Fund, with Dr. Myrna Cunningham Kain

34:00 The International Indigenous Women's Forum, with Teresa Zapeta Mendoza and Aminatu Gambo

41:45 Q&A


Dr. Myrna Kay Cunningham Kain Guiding Committee Chair Pawanka Fund
Teresa Zapeta Mendoza Executive Director FIMI (International Indigenous Women’s Forum)
Animatu Gambo Incidence and Political Participation Coordinator FIMI (International Indigenous Women’s Forum)
Jim Enote CEO Colorado Plateau Foundation

Published Wednesday, October 16, 2019