Frequently Asked Questions


Tides provides grantmaking and other support to social change leaders to help build a world of shared prosperity and social justice.

A Tides Collective Action Fund (CAF) is a purpose-driven fund that relies on an independent advisory committee to  make recommendations to Tides for grants in support of a specific charitable purpose.

How does a CAF work?

  • The independent advisory committee (IAC) is composed of individuals committed to the fund purpose and with expertise or experience to support the achievement of that purpose.  
  • The committee reviews grant requests, then makes recommendations to Tides that align with the CAF’s charitable purpose and goals.
  • Tides reviews the recommendations for legal compliance and support of Tides’ mission and values and then makes a final decision on the grant request. 

CAFs can accept charitable contributions from a variety of sources, including individuals, donor advised funds, private foundations and corporations.

Do grants from the CAF support political candidates or campaigns?

No. Tides Foundation is tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and CAFs are prohibited from funding partisan political activity. 

Can Tides overrule the recommendation of the Independent Advisory Committee?

CAFs benefit from the input of the independent advisory committee. The intent is to follow its recommendations. However, Tides may reject recommendations that are  inconsistent with the CAF’s purpose, don’t support Tides’ charitable mission, or are not in compliance with applicable law.

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Our organization is made up of five Tides entities: Tides Center,; Tides Foundation,; Tides Two Rivers Fund,; Tides Inc.,; and Tides Network. Our unique structure helps us connect changemakers in new ways, bringing together their diverse resources and experiences to realize a just and equitable future. 

Our Organizational Structure
Tides Network is our “home office.” It provides executive leadership, HR resources, financial management and accounting, legal and compliance, communications, and administrative services to advance the programming of the other Tides entities.

Tides Foundation
Tides Foundation leads Tides’ philanthropic work. The goal of the foundation is to advance social justice by partnering with funders to more quickly move their resources to social change leaders from communities historically denied power. Tides Foundation focuses on grantmaking and philanthropic services to doers and donors, including donor advised funds, collective action funds, and strategic advisory services. Tides Foundation also invests funds in social impact opportunities to support charitable activities in line with the Tides mission. Tides Foundation’s charitable funding comes from grants and donations received through a wide variety of sources, including individuals, families, foundations, and corporations.

Tides Center
Tides Center supports social change leaders, connects diverse people and organizations, and powers solutions that come directly from communities historically denied power, including women, economically disadvantaged communities, and communities of color. We offer comprehensive fiscal sponsorship—–including financial, compliance, insurance, governance, and human resources support—–as well as management, consulting, and grantmaking services. 

Tides Converge: Tides Inc. and Tides Two Rivers Fund
Tides Converge is a shared workspace that brings together a diverse community of leaders and organizations, linking sectors and crossing boundaries in the pursuit of social justice. Tides Inc. and Tides Two Rivers Fund hold and manage Tides Converge collaborative work and event spaces in San Francisco and New York City, respectively.

Tides Advocacy
Tides Advocacy is a separate 501(c)(4) organization.

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Tides does not provide funding or fundraising assistance to our fiscally sponsored projects.

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Tides offers a wide range of fund options to meet philanthropic objectives across the globe. Fees can range from 1% on standard donor advised funds to 5% for funds supporting a single domestic or  international project or organization. Tides staff can review your proposed fund activity and give a clear assessment of potential fees.

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Opening a fund at Tides generally takes 2-3 weeks upon receipt of a completed fund application. Please note that any complexities or clarifications uncovered during the application review process may prolong the timeline to open a fund.

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No. Funds at Tides must be opened with a minimum of $100,000 of committed funding for US-based activity or $50,000 for funds supporting a single domestic or international project or organization.

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