Overview of Report

“Virginia Philanthropy’s Response to the Challenges Facing Older Adults” is a report highlighting the need for philanthropic resources to support the growing population of older adults. Using a field scan survey of 24 funders, the report analyzes current work being done in philanthropy to address challenges faced by older Virginians and identifies where investments are needed to ensure older adults are able to age in place.

According to Inside Philanthropy, less than 2% of philanthropic funding nationally goes to support traditional age-related services. Funders note that in a resource-constrained world, older adults are not valued in the same way as other age groups, especially children and youth. Additionally, there is a need to build a more equitable system of services for older adults, one that addresses the disproportionately negative outcomes in health, lifespan, and access to services that impact communities of color and low-resourced communities in both urban and rural areas.

The pathway to engaging in older adult work among the funders is diverse, with decades of legacy work, donor interest, and deep research into local needs. However, philanthropy can serve a greater role in education and awareness, policy and advocacy, and building relationships within their communities to be more effective with financial investments and philanthropic tools.

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