At RTNF we try to focus our resources on (1) our partners and (2) our applicants who are showing strong potential for alignment. Because of limited staff capacity, we usually don't accept unscheduled calls. We also try to reserve phone calls and meetings for applicants who continue to show potential for fit with our mission and criteria (usually after the LOI stage of review). We source leads through peer funders and attempt to leverage existing information to do our due diligence whenever possible.
We do not accept gifts (e.g., free tickets, merchandise, meals, etc.) from any of our partners, applicants, anyone affiliated with the foundation, or who wishes to become affiliated with the foundation. While we appreciate the generosity displayed by those we work with, we cannot accept such gestures.
We prefer not to attend parties, galas, award ceremonies, or fundraising events (virtual or in-person) unless there is a reasonable, compelling, and proportional charitable purpose for doing so. This is in part because we have very limited staffing capacity, but also because we'd like to limit our site visits to times where we can learn more about the normal and daily work of organizations.
Site Visits and Travel
While we believe that site visits produce a tremendous amount of insight about organizations and their programs, RTNF keeps site visits and travel to a minimum. This is for two primary reasons:
We wish to keep our carbon footprint small, and
With only one program officer handling our many grant requests, we have a very limited capacity for lengthy trips.
For the foregoing reasons, we only request site visits when (1) an organization has demonstrated a high-level of potential throughout other parts of the review process, and (2) we feel that a visit is absolutely necessary to make a grant decision.