Membership FAQs

TPC grantee School on Wheels

How long does my membership last?

Your membership extends to Dec. 31 of the year after you join (i.e., when you join in 2021, you’re good to go until 12/31/2022).

Do I need to be a member to attend your educational programming? How much do these events cost?

Philanthropy Dialogues are member-only events. With few exceptions, all other TPC programs are open to those interested in learning more about TPC. We do not charge for any of our programs.

What are the opportunities for Young Philanthropists?

In our commitment to foster the next generation of young women philanthropists (YPs), we offer access to all TPC programs for women between the ages of 18 and 35. In addition, YPs are encouraged to join committees where they can learn with and from more experienced members, and to attend events specifically designed for them.

Is my membership investment to The Philanthropy Connection tax deductible?

Yes. The Philanthropy Connection is a non-profit organization exempt from federal taxes under IRS Code Section 501(c)3. Contributions are fully tax deductible.

How does The Philanthropy Connection decide which organizations get a grant?

Our grants eligibility criteria and process are spelled out in the New Member Packet.

What am I obligated to do?

As much as you would like! The only requirement is to make a membership investment of $2,500, $1,200, $600, or $300. We hope that all members will participate in voting for our grantees and attend the Grant Awards & All Member Meeting when new grantees are revealed. The level of a member’s participation is their choice alone: women may serve on committees, volunteer with grantees, or simply vote each year knowing that each carefully vetted ballot finalist is a worthy investment.

When will my membership dollars be applied to the grants pool?

The grant amounts we award each May/June are determined by the number of members and amount of dues we receive as of the previous December 31st.

Do I have to live in Massachusetts to join?

No, though you must live in or frequently visit the Boston area in order to participate on a Grant Review Team. These teams typically meet two to three times in person (fall/winter). Final voting is done by email.

Is there a role for me if I can’t make a membership donation?

Yes, you can support our work by donating any amount you choose to help offset expenses for our administrative support and member programs and events. Non-member donors do not serve on committees, nor do they vote.

If you are interested in becoming a member but are unable to invest $300 or more, please contact connect@thephilanthropyconnection.org to learn about receiving a sponsorship.

I have a male friend or family member who wants to join. Can he participate?

Yes, while this is a women’s collective giving organization, men can support our work by making a donation, encouraging the women in their lives to join, or giving the gift of membership.

If I invest a certain amount or make an additional donation, will I get more than one vote or receive other additional membership benefits?

No. Each member is entitled to one vote and has access to all member benefits, no matter how much they give. We, of course, encourage contributions over the standard membership fee as excess funds help defray the expenses of our education events, programs, and administrative costs.

Can I pay my membership investment over time?

Members joining at the Partner ($600) or Friend ($300) level have the option to pay on a quarterly basis.

Why does TPC offer four membership investment levels?

TPC members represent diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. We recognize that one’s age or current income level does not fully represent one’s ability to invest in a specific membership level. Wealth in Boston is highly stratified, with Black, Latinx, and women-led households the least likely to have accrued savings or real estate. TPC is committed to dismantling systemic inequities while working to cultivate a membership that is bound by its commitment to Greater Boston. This is why, in 2021, we committed to expanding our access to a more diverse membership by moving from two to four membership levels.

Can I contribute publicly traded stock to cover my membership donation?

Yes. If you would like further information on using stock to cover membership fees or a donation for TPC’s programming and operations, please send an email request to connect@thephilanthropyconnection.org.

If I cannot attend the Grant Awards Meeting, can I still vote?

Yes. Voting is done before the meeting via email.

My company matches funds for charitable donations. Can I cover part of my membership fees with funds from my company’s matching program?

Yes, we allow members to use matching funds from their employer’s matching program to help cover their membership contribution.  For more information on how to use this type of payment, please contact connect@thephilanthropyconnection.org. Learn more about corporations that offer matching gifts.

 

Conflicts of Interest

We are deeply committed to selecting our grant recipients through a transparent, honest, and fair process. To ensure this occurs, we have a clear policy regarding conflict of interest, which every member is required to read, sign, and agree to uphold. This policy requires all members, Grant Review Team members, and our Board of Directors to disclose any and all relationships they may have with a grant applicant or potential applicant. We require anyone that has a potential conflict of interest to recuse themselves from all discussions and votes that involve the organization with which they have a relationship.