Beyond financial support, the Foundation wants to contribute to the progress of the organization it works with. We seek to establish close ties with our partner organizations, building partnerships based on mutual trust, transparency and sharing of expertise.

Four fields of intervention

Since 1965, the Foundation has intervened in four fields:

  • Community support
  • Education
  • Healthcare
  • Arts and culture

The Foundation’s intervention in each of these fields, although very wide-ranging, is defined by clearly established interests and guidelines.

Two objectives common to all fields of intervention

Two objectives transcend the guidelines specific to the different sectors:

Contribute to the development of communities, organization and individuals by supporting organizations and projects that foster capacity-building and human dignity.

We pay special attention to applicants and projects that promote the autonomy and empowerment of individuals and organizations, in respect for their capabilities and their reality.

We also give preference to initiatives that enable the development of individual or collective knowledge and knowhow.

Encourage entrepreneurship and innovative and creative actions with a societal impact.

To do this, we favour innovation, both in management processes and in projects, in a social transformation perspective.

Innovation, and especially social innovation, has many definitions. The one we have adopted is inspired by several community stakeholders. In our opinion, it clearly reflects the idea that innovation is primarily a matter of attitude and openness to change.

Social innovation: An approach, a practice or an intervention that brings about in-depth change in the way things are done by institutions, organizations or communities in order to reduce their vulnerability.

Innovating means being more efficient, creating new services, and finding new ways of accessing them. Innovating means thinking differently and using original reasoning.

Community-Based Philanthropy

The Foundation’s philanthropic personality is articulated around three essential points:


In-depth knowledge of its partner organizations is a priority for the Foundation. We devote a great amount of time and energy to building solid and sustainable partnerships, in the most egalitarian perspective possible.

We prefer continuous dialogue with the partner organizations, through field visits, formal and informal follow-up and mutual feedback. We want to be a discussion partner of choice for these organizations, regardless of the challenges they have to face.

Sharing Knowledge

The Foundation launched Philagora a capacity-building program for its partner organizations. Every year, we organize a series of training sessions, workshops and lectures, as well as networking activities. In addition, every year, a co-development cohort on the culture of change and social innovation brings together a dozen NPO executive directors seeking in-depth discussions on the complex issues their organizations are facing.

We thus seek to contribute to the emergence of a dynamic community of practice and, once again, to the deepening of our ties with our partners.

The 1, place des Savoirs portal, which will be launched in August, will be available to everyone, bringing together resources, references and suggested reading on a series of subjects of community and philanthropic interest. This one-stop destination for multiple searches will be updated constantly.

Anchored in the Community

The Foundation tries to develop the most accurate possible reading of its partners’ needs and realities. We make it our duty to be an active participant in each of the communities to which we belong.

Believing in the importance of opening a window to the donor organizations’ practices and expectations, we participate in many reflection, mobilization and information activities.

Knowing the community also depends on our employees’ involvement in their respective communities. Our Volunteer Recognition Program exists to promote and highlight employees’ volunteer work with causes and organizations that are dear to them.