CHIP Founding Executive Director Kat Rosqueta discusses crisis grantmaking on “Top of Mind with Julie Rose”

The Center for High Impact Philanthropy’s Founding Executive Director, Kat Rosqueta, joined “Top of Mind” podcast host Julie Rose to discuss best practices for high impact philanthropy in a crisis.

Rosqueta stressed the importance of giving cash, not goods, in the wake of a crisis. “What happens in a disaster is that it overwhelms the systems that are in place. It closes roads, it puts things into chaos,” she said. “Every time a donor from outside the region, as well-intentioned as they are, thinks, ‘Here are some things that I think I might need in that situation’ and packages them up and sends them over there, all that does is clog up the infrastructure that’s needed to get things like medicine at scale, specialized doctors and first responders that are needed in the affected area.”

Rosqueta also stressed the flexibility that cash provides nonprofit aid organizations working on the ground. “In a disaster situation, needs can change overnight. You can’t transform a blanket or a bottle of water into the food or medicine that a family needs. That’s why cash is so important in a crisis, it’s flexible,” she told Rose.

While it’s important to give cash in the immediate wake of a disaster, in order to maximize impact, it’s important to keep giving even when the headlines fade. “For every crisis, there is a lot of giving early on, and then it drops. People move onto the next news cycle,” Rosqueta said. “Giving some now, and saving some intentionally for later can be even higher impact because the needs are better known at that time, but there’s often not as much attention or money going to those needs.”

Find the episode here: