Orange County Grantmakers advances equity by creating strategic alignment and cultivating transformational relationships and leadership among OC philanthropists and nonprofits.

The OCG is not, itself, a grant making organization. There is no OCG grant application or funding cycle. OCG members, however, occasionally do pool their funds in support of a regional initiative or project, such as the annual Summit for Nonprofit Leaders.

The OCG is a fiscally sponsored initiative of Charitable Ventures Orange County, a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization which provides accounting and administration support to collaboratively funded OCG projects.

The agenda of the OCG, and its areas of focus, are set by the members themselves. Through discussion and debate, OCG members identify current issues facing the community and challenges facing the nonprofit sector. If an issue requires either research or sustained discussion, a work group is formed to meet outside of regularly scheduled meetings to continue the momentum on the topic. Among past and current work groups, the following topics have been explored and/or implemented: Technical Assistance, Capacity Building, Homelessness, Leaders Summit, Job Development, Census, Loan Funds, and Financial Resources.

The OCG is consistent in its focus on strengthening the sector through effective philanthropy.  Work groups meet regularly when working on projects, but can go on hiatus throughout a given year.

As mentioned above, the OCG does not have an open grant cycle, but may provide funding to individual nonprofits or regional initiatives in support of a critical community issue. Examples include funding for the County’s Winter Transitional Shelter Program and direct grants to several nonprofit organizations specifically to bolster capacity.

The OCG does not offer a mechanism for receiving unsolicited proposals or requests. Funding is determined by the initiatives launched by members.

Quarterly member meetings are dedicated to information sharing, topical presentations, and work group updates. Some nonprofits have been asked to present to the members to help educate regional grant makers on critical community issues. The presentation agenda is driven by the focus of the members, and is not an appropriate forum for organization-specific presentations.

No. Member forums are for members only.

Each year the summit grows larger a we welcome more members of our community. If you do not believe you are on the invitation list please sign-up for our e-news using the link at the bottom of the page. All are welcome. 

Learn more about our membership by visiting our membership page.

How do we build a compassionate and inclusive America in an age of distrust? WAJAHAT ALI knows from personal experience that when we come together to be the superheroes of our own stories, we can create honest social change. The beloved TED speaker has written for the New York Times, the Washington Post, and The Atlantic about our urgent issues—immigration, politics, parenthood—with boldness, hope, and humor. His memoir Go Back to Where You Came From, one of Amazon’s Best Books of the Year, follows his life as a Muslim Pakistani-American on a surprising, emotional, and challenging quest for the good life. Iconic journalist Katie Couric says that “we are all so fortunate to be on the receiving end of his intellect, his humanity, and his heart.”

Wajahat Ali

“With wit and charm, Ali delivers a masterful meditation on growing up brown in America...he gives us a clear-eyed affirmation of the country America could be.” — Mara Gay, New York Times

Mara Gay, New York Times

Wajahat Ali uses his platform to fight tirelessly for the social change we need in our country—and he isn’t afraid to get personal while doing it. The Daily Beast columnist and former New York Times writer, TED speaker, award-winning playwright, and Peabody-nominated producer of the documentary series The Secret Life of Muslims offers us his experiences of triumph over hardship as a beacon of hope and resilience in the face of life’s impossible situations. From his experiences of Islamophobia growing up as a Muslim Pakistani-American to his two-year-old daughter’s liver cancer diagnosis, Wajahat is living proof that when we share our authentic stories, we build the America we wish to live in.”

In his memoir Go Back to Where You Came From: And Other Helpful Recommendations on How to Become American, Wajahat teaches us how to create our own superhero origin story, invest in hope for the future of America, and enact real social change. The book was called “biting and funny and full of heart” by NPR. Representative Ilhan Omar called Wajahat’s work “hilarious” and “deeply moving”, and legendary writer Dave Eggers said it was the book he’d “been hoping Wajahat Ali would write for ten years—hilarious, stylistically fearless, deeply humane.”

Wajahat is also the author of The Domestic Crusaders—the first major play about Muslim-Americans in a post-9/11 world. He was the lead researcher and author for the Center for American Progress’s seminal report “Fear Inc., Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America,” and served as a national correspondent for Al Jazeera America, where he told stories about communities and individuals often marginalized or under-reported in mainstream media.

As Creative Director of Affinis Wajahat Labs, he worked to create social entrepreneurship initiatives to support and uplift marginalized communities. He also worked with the US State Department to design and implement the “Generation Change” leadership program to empower young social entrepreneurs. Wajahat initiated chapters in eight countries, including Pakistan and Singapore. For his work, he was honored as a “Generation Change Leader” by Sec. of State Clinton and recognized as an “Emerging Muslim American Artist” by the Muslim Public Affairs Council. 

He has given keynote speeches around the world such as TED, The Aspen Ideas Festival, Google, the United Nations, and The New Yorker Festival. His writing appears regularly in the New York TimesThe Atlantic, the Washington Post, and The Guardian. He’s a Senior Fellow at The Western States Center and Auburn Seminary and co-host of Al Jazeera’s The Stream.