Our understanding of philanthropy is informed by our Christian faith, and motivated by a belief that all of us are gifted in some way to care for others. All directors and staff of Pinetops are committed followers of Jesus Christ as expressed in the Nicene Creed, and generally affirm the principles found in the Lausanne Covenant. We have several core values that inform our grantmaking, including:
Change through Community
We think that change happens best when people come together in communities, whether that is a non-profit organization, church, or even a student center. We support communities—and organizations building community— that think differently about the needs around them and ultimately radiate so much love and hope that the world can’t help but be changed.
We view our grantmaking as a stewardship. As a result, we think hard around each grant and partner organization, to make sure it is yielding the greatest impact for the funding committed. We look for ways where a new program or investment can unlock a much greater return than a typical grant, even if it might be higher risk. We ask this question of our partner organizations: What would you need to put your impact on a fundamentally different level?
We believe thoughtful strategy is essential in philanthropy and social enterprise. We take a data driven approach to the problems and seek to understand how fundamental change will occur, and we encourage our partner organizations to do the same. We are most interested in addressing root causes rather than symptoms. We hope our partner organizations challenge our thinking and that we might do the same.
We believe that giving should be fun—for both us and our partner organizations. We think that when your effort makes a difference, regardless of the industry or field, it is a fundamentally joyful and fulfilling activity. We like to celebrate together with our partner organizations in their work.
Pinetops started with a chance meeting on an airplane. A young woman with a terminally ill child sat next to a founding board member, and her story was so moving that it prompted the question "How can we help?"
We haven't stopped asking that question.
Since that day Pinetops has grown into a private foundation that looks to find innovative solutions to long-term, structural problems. We were founded and are run by entrepreneurs; we understand that building something new is hard and requires risk. We seek out extraordinary leaders and communities who have the potential to catalyze major impact.