1. Shifting Priorities for Foundations
While it’s still early to say with certainty, many in the philanthropic world, including Inside Philanthropy, are having more and more conversations about what is being called the "Trump Effect," the anticipated impact that President Donald Trump's presidency will have on philanthropy. In April 2017, the Center for Effective Philanthropy published the report, Shifting Winds, which was based on a survey of more than 160 CEOs of foundations. The survey indicated that nearly 75 percent of foundations are actively or planning to alter their giving as a direct result of Trump’s policies. Areas in which foundations are considering making changes include, emergency grants, additional funding beyond existing grants, and general operating support.
In addition to the efforts of foundations throughout the country, studies also show a likely shift in the giving of individuals. Studies conducted by PMX Agency and National Research Group suggest that new patterns of giving are likely to arise among individuals. Both Democrats and Republicans express an increased interest in charitable contributions, and they are unsurprisingly focused on different priorities. While Democrats generally seek to offset the anticipated negative impact of Trump’s policies in the health and social arena, Republicans generally are prepared to take advantage of the Trump White House's anticipated policies, particularly related to defense and religious-related causes.
While the full impact of the “Trump Effect” has yet to be seen, both foundations and individuals are preparing to shift their attention and efforts as a direct result of the policies of the White House, including the items slated for cuts in Trump’s proposed budget, which calls for significant cuts to the Department of Health and Human Services to the tune of 18 percent, or $15.1 billion dollars. The largest targets of these cuts are between $5.8 billion to $25.9 billion from the National Institutes of Health, and $4.2 billion in federal grants for low-income communities, including the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which provides assistance to low-income people for heating costs. In addition, this budget would cut more than $400 million in training programs for nurses and other health professionals. While this budget has yet to be voted on by the Congress, it indicates the administration's commitment to major cuts in the areas of health, human services, and workforce development.