Maximizing the Value of Philanthropic Efforts through Planned Partnerships between the U.S. Government and Private Foundations. Fostering Sustainability through the Initiatives Own Mechanisms


Both USG and foundation cases have taken sustainability into consideration when shaping their responses to health and social service problems. In some cases they have built innovative mechanisms for sustainability into their unique approaches to a problem. For example, Ashoka actively fosters relationships among Fellows so that they can draw on each other for support after Fellowship funding comes to an end. In addition to these networking opportunities, Ashoka Fellows are given lifetime access to communications and legal consultation through independent firms. In another example, GAVIs IFFIm was designed specifically to keep immunization financing in low-income countries predictable and sustainable. IFFIm borrows against 10- to 20-year legally binding aid commitments from donor countries to ensure that financing is available when needed and over the long term.

Among some federal agencies, sustainability is intentionally linked to local ownership of initiatives, which, in any case, experts have agreed is critical to the success of development efforts (HELP Commission 2007). PMI, PEPFAR, and MCC all require that recipient countries take part in developing interventions and, in certain cases, co-financing programs. PEPFARs harmonization process requires that each country lead and take ownership of its own response to that nations AIDS epidemic. Similarly, MCCs compact development process requires in-country identification of problems and development of solutions, while PMI engages local governments throughout the assessment, planning, and implementation phases of an in-country malaria control strategy. PMI also actively encourages recipients to diversify their funding sources, in particular through involving NGOs and private businesses.

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