Ford Foundation is a resource for innovative people and institutions worldwide. Ford Foundation mission lies in their believe in the inherent dignity of all people. But around the world, too many people are excluded from the political, economic, and social institutions that shape their lives.
In addressing this reality, Ford Foundation has been guided by a vision of social justice—a world in which all individuals, communities, and peoples work toward the protection and full expression of their human rights; are active participants in the decisions that affect them; share equitably in the knowledge, wealth, and resources of society; and are free to achieve their full potential.
Across eight decades, their mission has been to reduce poverty and injustice, strengthen democratic values, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement.
Ford Foundation Approaches
Ford Foundation believe that social movements are built upon individual leadership, strong institutions, and innovative, often high-risk ideas. While the specifics of what Ford Foundation work on have evolved over the years, investments in these three areas have remained the touchstones of everything they do and are central to our theory of how change happens in the world. These approaches have long distinguished the Ford Foundation, and they have had a profound cumulative impact.
Across eight decades, they have invested in innovative ideas, visionary individuals, and frontline institutions advancing human dignity around the world.The 1964 Civil Rights Act was an opportunity for the Ford Foundation to expand its support of academic studies on race relations and African-American educational institutions to include action-oriented grantees who sought to empower whole communities.
Most significantly, Ford supported public defenders and the training of African-American lawyers. This innovative strategy became the framework for Ford’s advocacy for Mexican American, Native American, and women’s rights in the US, and for its role in bringing down apartheid in South Africa. By the 1980s, Ford was investing heavily in indigenous and cultural rights.