Civic Leadership

To create a stronger, more vibrant community all voices must be heard, all of us must collaborate to solve important issues and seize emerging opportunities, and decision-making has to be backed by quality data. This is civic leadership.

Together RI attendee

Taking on critical issues

At the Foundation we've made civic leadership activities a linchpin of our strategy. Using convening, leadership, and engagement tools that go beyond grantmaking, we are able to have significant impact on issues that are critical for our state today – and tomorrow – including our response to the COVID-19 health and economic crisis, as well as improving our public education system, our state’s economy, and the health of all who call Rhode Island home.

Learn more

Thundermist personnel provide COVId-19 testing

The response to COVID-19

Thanks to the generosity of so many Rhode Islanders, the Foundation was able to quickly respond to the many needs created by the COVID-19 health and economic crisis. In early March, we launched the COVID-19 Response Fund to meet emerging needs in the community. This was followed by additional funds, including the COVID-19 Behavioral Health Fund, to focus on increasing mental health and substance use needs, and the weR1 Rhode Island Fund, to assist Rhode Islanders who may not qualify for emergency relief assistance due to their immigration status.

Read more about the COVID-19 response

Education in RI

The Foundation-led Long-Term Education Planning Committee presents recommendations for improving the state’s pre-K to 12th grade public education system in this report.

Health in RI

Local health and health care industry experts on the Foundation-led Long Term Health Planning Committee developed this 10-year plan for improving health in Rhode Island.

Guests at Foundation event

Be a Rhode Island change maker

Civic leadership efforts at the Foundation are funded in part by donations to the Civic Leadership Fund. Annual contributions to the fund allow us to:

  • Examine issues by commissioning research;
  • Create conversation through public affairs programs;
  • Advocate for policy change;
  • Convene leaders and incubate innovative ideas to craft solutions and;
  • Create a vision where Rhode Islanders with diverse interests and backgrounds come together for the greater good.

Now, more than ever, our state needs you to step forward. Consider giving to the Civic Leadership Fund today.

Donate to the Civic Leadership Fund

As the state's community foundation, we are committed to addressing the underlying causes of inequity and eliminating disparities, and we know many of you are, too. We have been offering free racial equity trainings, and we will be announcing additional equity-focused efforts soon. We hope you will join us as we plan for and work toward a better future for every Rhode Islander.