Ford Fuels Future Leaders Through GlobalGiving Grantmaking

Sarah Heimlich, a young engineering student with a bright future, credits a robotics competition with changing her life.

“I started off as a very shy, quiet 10-year-old who would literally hide behind my mom at the grocery store. I didn’t really have any ambitions in life, and I had no passion. Today, I’m a fourth-year engineering student who’s interned at Google,” she said.

Sarah is a participant of FIRST, an international program to inspire young people to be science and technology leaders. The program is supported by Ford. It’s one of many nonprofits that the global automotive industry leader funds through a grantmaking partnership with GlobalGiving.



Scale grantmaking operations

As part of its corporate social responsibility initiatives, the Ford Motor Company and Ford Fund provide more than $37 million annually in grants to nonprofit organizations, and the company is well known for its social impact. In 2014, Ford was recognized as one of the world’s most ethical companies by Ethisphere for the fifth year in a row, and it made Corporate Social Responsibility magazine’s list of 100 Best Corporate Citizens in the US. Still, the company wanted to do more. Ford has facilities across six continents and operates in 77 countries worldwide, and it felt its grantmaking program should match the scale of its growing global operations. Ford turned to GlobalGiving for help.


A global grantmaking program with flexibility

GlobalGiving now facilitates and supports Ford’s grantmaking process from beginning to end. In partnership with Ford, GlobalGiving:

  • Identifies grantees from our community of thousands of nonprofit partners all over the world that fit Ford’s corporate social responsibility goals.
  • Verifies 501(c)(3) equivalency status and compliance with US regulations such as federal tax rules and specific in-country regulations.
  • Set up a universal grant application process for implementation throughout the company.
  • Manages grant agreements based on varying regional needs.
  • Delivers impact metrics and reports through the distribution, moderation, and analysis of six-month and one-year grantee surveys.

“Through our continued partnership, GlobalGiving facilitates giving for Ford to vetted and trusted local charities, and enables us to successfully invest in the global communities in which we do business.”
—Mike Schmidt, Ford Director of Economic Mobility and Global Community Development


A simplified giving process and deeper relationships with grantees

In the first year of its partnership with GlobalGiving, Ford donated $1 million to nine nonprofit partners in China, India, and Brazil. In the years since, Ford has dramatically grown its program, giving $10 million to 178 grantees in 44 different countries in 2017. On the receiving end: Future leaders like Sarah who couldn’t be more grateful for the support.

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Featured Photo by GlobalGiving

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