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How Investing in Advocacy Successfully Challenged Mass Incarceration

Funders increasingly recognize the need to engage in advocacy to advance social and environmental change, but often find it challenging to identify effective vehicles and work within their constraints. Ballot initiatives are a powerful emerging vehicle for both 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) funders to drive policy impact and increase civic and electoral engagement in pursuit of their social missions. Arabella Advisors recently wrote a case study of California’s Proposition 47, the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act, which brought sweeping sentencing reforms for people convicted of nonviolent offenses and stands as a groundbreaking victory in the movement to end mass incarceration. A variety of funders used various advocacy tools to help achieve that victory. Our case study and a recent webinar look into how they did it—and highlight several critical lessons for funders. Among them: Continue reading >

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