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Our Approach to Partnering with Philanthropy 

Collectrify centers equity and people in the removal of fossil fuels from buildings and communities by giving resources to grassroots, frontline, and base-building organizations and leaders in communities of color and low-income communities to support their self-determined priorities. We seek solutions that can transform the balance of power in the ownership and distribution of energy production, energy infrastructure, and housing.


Environmental justice principles are the foundation upon which all of our work is built. They are the basis for our organizing and for building community and collective power. These values and principles served as the north star for the climate, environmental, and housing justice leaders who founded Collectrify because they elevate what we know and believe to be true: the pathway to equitable building electrification starts with strategies that serve our most vulnerable community members and center their leadership and self-determination.

Justice-focused work is very complicated. The universe of philanthropic institutions working on decarbonization and environmental justice is very small. Dominant philanthropic orientation and practices have not resourced frontline communities and leaders to lead the way on decarbonization strategies.

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Philanthropic approaches to reducing emissions from the built environment have largely ignored a big lever, and that is relationships with, and leadership from, community groups. Collectrify is designed to avoid imposing an agenda on community priorities, and to instead respond to the self-determined priorities elevated by community practitioners and justice leaders. New philanthropic models are needed to solve systemic challenges. Collectrify leads with a core intent of trusting in what frontline partners will focus on now to achieve effective community-based decarbonization strategies over the long-term. 

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Collectrify supports community-based leaders of climate action, energy transitions, and safe, resilient housing. Collectrify is leading by example in how philanthropy can show up in partnership with, and in service to, the community.


We are grateful for the leadership from Collectrify’s founding philanthropic partners - the Kresge Foundation, the Heising-Simons Foundation, and the Summit Foundation - for thought partnership and collaboration on the development of Collectrify and our Learning Community Collaboratory.

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