Advocacy 101: Rules for Nonprofits and Funders

Advocacy can be a key tool for U.S. nonprofits to enact social change, if they understand the rules.

As the United States enters another election cycle, Foundation Advocacy Grants: What Grantees Need to Know offers helpful resources for grantees to engage in and obtain funding for lawful advocacy. This new guide by Bolder Advocacy, an initiative of Alliance for Justice, identifies the kinds of advocacy in which nonprofits can choose to engage and clarifies the differing rules that govern private and public foundations who fund advocacy efforts.

“Chances are you will want to approach foundations to support your advocacy activities,” the report says. “This guide will focus on helping you understand foundations’ capacity to fund advocacy and how you can maximize your opportunities to gain foundation support through careful proposal writing and reporting.”

Read the report, Foundation Advocacy Grants: What Grantees Need to Know


The Alliance for Justice received $45,000 in grant support from the RBF between 2014 and 2017 for work on the Bolder Advocacy initiative.

The Rockefeller Brothers Fund is a private foundation and abides by the advocacy and lobbying-related laws for private foundations, which differ from the rules for public charities, including community foundations.