Key Points

This article documents the history and work of the Appalachian Ohio Funders Group, a ninemember regional grantmaking collaborative committed to strategically enhancing the region’s assets through leadership, networking, financial and in-kind investments, leveraged resources, and collaboration.

The work of the collaborative is positioned within the broader context of recent publications examining funder collaboratives, networks, and collective impact as ways to address social problems, achieve economies of scale, and inspire innovation. Specific attention is given to what makes the collaborative unique – namely, the organizational diversity of the funding partners, the lack of a shared issue area, and the fluidity of work within the group.

The findings provide insight into how meaningful collaboration takes place when funders share a love of place and negotiate the costs and benefits associated with collaborative work, and how an explicit commitment to being creative and adaptive can help a group respond to emergent opportunities.

Open Access