What is the Community Change Learning Exchange?

The Community Change Learning Exchange (CCLE) aims to provide a means to unlock and share lessons learned, what works, what doesn’t and what still remains to be learned, as well as to create a safe space for funders to discuss not only past, but current challenges they are experiencing in community change work. Check out our agenda!

Our CCLE includes:

• 1.5 day peer learning exchange, including: performance by MPower Theater Group and FrameWorks Institute, learning from the local Healthy Neighborhood Initiative, tours of Silver City, Burnham Park, Layton Park, and more!
• Shared learning in a safe space
• Learning from people and place in the Greater Milwaukee area including the Dominican Center for Women, Layton Boulevard West Neighbors, and Amani
• Facilitated group discussions on funder challenges & opportunities
• Exploring how issues of equity impact our community change efforts
• Exploring the importance of self-care

Register here!

What are the desired outcomes?

We hope that the occasional learning, sharing and challenging of one another through authentic “safe space” conversations on our respective work in place-based community change will enable us to:

• Capture, cull and disseminate the best practice lessons to the field of place-based community change
• Glean learning opportunities from others in the field for the purpose of informing one’s own place-based community change work
• Advance funder thinking and action to the importance and value of community change work in your own places.

How does the CCLE operate?

The CCLE is intended to serve as a safe space for dialogue among funders that will allow them to discuss – openly – opportunities, challenges and perspectives in community change work.

For more information, email Dion Cartwright at dion@www.fundersnetwork.org.

Recommended Accommodations:

Aloft Milwaukee Downtown
1230 N Old World 3rd St, Milwaukee, WI 53212

The Brewhouse Inn & Suites
1215 N 10th St, Milwaukee, WI 53205

The Astor Hotel
924 E Juneau Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53202

Days Inn & Suites Milwaukee
1840 N 6th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53212



The Community Change Learning Exchange (CCLE) is a forum for foundation leaders and staff to engage in frank discussions about the opportunities and challenges associated with place-based community change. CCLE’s aim is to promote honest dialogue about the realities of undertaking place-based work and what funders might do differently to insure the equitable, long-term viability of community change work. A central assumption of CCLE is that the purpose of community change is to dismantle the underlying systemic and structural conditions that perpetuate disparity and disinvestment in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation convened the first CCLE meeting in Baltimore in 2014 and has served as the CCLE convener and executive secretariat, but CCLE is not a Casey initiative. Subsequent meetings were held in Cincinnati, Detroit and San Diego between 2014 and 2016. The foundations that hosted the CCLE meetings have been involved in place-based work, including implementing long-term community change initiatives (CCIs). The meeting explored lessons related to community engagement, race equity and inclusion, transparency, mitigating the effects of gentrification and displacement and other essential elements of effective place-based work. Community representatives also participated in CCLE site visits and discussions, allowing foundation representatives to engage with them at a depth that is unusual in many funder-grantee relationships.

CCLE is a vital forum for capturing and sharing knowledge, as well as a community of support for representatives of foundations engaged in placed-based community change. It offers a safe space for discussion and reflection that is hard to achieve when one is immersed in actually doing the work. CCLE augments the work of philanthropic affinity groups concerned with place-based work (all of which participated in CCLE) and provides a platform to inform the field about how to do this important work better. To date, approximately 100 foundation staff and other stakeholders participated in the four CCLE sessions.