Ariadne News & Events
REGISTER NOW: 2016 ARIADNE FORECAST ROUNDTABLES: Ariadne is creating its second Forecast for Social Change and Human Rights Funders. We invite you to join some of the best brains in the field to help us as a community create an overall Ariadne forecast for the year ahead. We will be holding meetings on January 18th in Brussels, January 20th in Paris, January 25th in London and on January 29th in The Hague, with appropriate refreshments, to help us all think about major trends, in both the issues and in the field of philanthropy. To come to one of the 2016 Forecast locations, please click here. Meanwhile, we are looking forward to receiving your answers to six short questions. All of this input will be used to create the 2016 Ariadne Forecast. Click here to access the 2016 questionnaire. The deadline for returning questionnaires to firstname.lastname@example.org is December 7th 2015.
REGISTER NOW: TELE-BRIEFING ON THE REFUGEES IN EUROPE – INSIDE THE CALAIS’ JUNGLE: Ariadne will hold its fifth tele-briefing to discuss the refugees in and around Europe on Monday, 7th of December at 16:00 CET, 15:00 GMT, 10:00 EST. The migrant camp at Calais, known as The Jungle, is now one of Europe’s largest shanty towns with around 6,000 residents, including an increasing number of women and children, all of whom are living in dire conditions. As winter approaches making living conditions even harder, more and more voices are calling on the EU, British and French governments to treat Calais as a humanitarian crisis rather than a matter of border security. This tele-briefing will look both at the humanitarian issues and also consider how funders can help in the search for a policy solution to this problem. Please confirm your participation by clicking here. Please note that this invitation is for funders only.
REGISTER NOW: ARIADNE PORTAL TUITION: One-hour tuition sessions to increase your skill in using the Ariadne Portal will be held on Wednesday, December 9th 2015 and Wednesday, January 13th 2016, both at 15:00 UTC (London time). These are both online webinars you can participate in from your desk. The sessions are free of charge. To join, you will need a computer or tablet (iPad/Android tablet) in order to watch the online demonstration. To register, please RSVP to Kenneth Hill – email@example.com. When you RSVP, please indicate which date you would like to register for.
SAVE THE DATE: ARIADNE POLICY BRIEFING 2016, TALLINN: Ariadne will hold its annual Policy Briefing next year from April 20th-22nd in Tallinn, Estonia. All Ariadne participants are invited to the meeting, and registration will open in December. The planning committee has requested fresh ideas for break-out and plenary sessions at the meeting. If you would like to send a proposal, please see here for more details.
The next Thread will go out on Thursday, December 10th. We would love to hear from you! Please contact Lori Stanciu by December 8th if you would like to share announcements, events, or resources for the next issue.
New Research, Articles and Judgements
What the new Turkey-EU cooperation really means for Syrian refugees: In mid October, EU leaders adopted an action plan that aims to stem the flow of Syrian refugees and irregular migrants, primarily by increasing cooperation with Turkey. Kemal Kirişci, TÜSİAD Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Center on the United States and Europe Director, Turkey Project, looks at how this new action plan will benefit refugees on the ground. The first part of the action plan pledges EU financial support to Turkey in hosting Syrian refugees, and states its intention to allow for the resettlement of some of those refugees in the EU. In return, Turkey is expected to open up the employment market to refugees—a highly sensitive and controversial issue across the Turkish public.
The Ranking Digital Rights 2015 Corporate Accountability Index: The Ranking Digital Rights analysed a representative group of 16 companies that collectively hold the power to shape the digital lives of billions of people across the globe. Eight publicly listed Internet companies and eight publicly listed telecommunications companies were selected based on factors including geographic reach and diversity, user base, company size, and market share. These companies were assessed on 31 indicators across three categories – commitment, freedom of expression, and privacy – drawn heavily from international human rights frameworks, as well as emerging and established global principles for privacy and freedom of expression.
Researching hidden populations: approaches to and methodologies for generating data on trafficking in persons: The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has released a special edition of Crime and Society on measuring trafficked populations. This volume contains articles from leading academics covering a range of methods and practices.
Funding Organising Led by Girls and Young Women: This new publication from Mama Cash and the Fondo Centroamericano de Mujeres (Central American Women’s Fund) documents lessons learned by 11 women’s funds around the world, over a three year period. The report also highlights 7 recommendations that came out of this collaboration.
If Russian Lawmakers Get Their Way, Coming Out Could Send You To Jail: According to Carl Schreck from Radio Free Europe, Radio Liberty, Russian lawmakers have submitted legislation that would introduce fines and potential jail for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals who publicly reveal their sexual orientation. The bill, registered on October 29 in Russia’s Duma, appears to target a process known as “coming out” as well as other “public expressions of nontraditional sexual relations.” The legislation would introduce fines of up to 5,000 rubles ($78) for individuals who “publicly” express “nontraditional sexual orientations” and for those who “demonstrate their aberrant sexual preferences in public.”
How inequality threatens all human rights: Radhika Balakrishnan, Faculty Director of the Center for Women’s Global Leadership at Rutgers University argues, in an article for Open Democracy, that inequality is not only a threat to economic and social rights, but it threatens the realisation of all forms of rights everywhere. She mentions that, given the sharp rise in inequality in recent decades, it is critical to understand the connections between the realisation of human rights and inequality, how we think about and measure inequality, the degree to which growing inequality threatens basic rights, and what the human rights framework says, and does not say, about inequality. See also Extreme inequality as the antithesis of human rights.
Understanding and addressing the pressures of migration on communities: The Institute for Public Policy Research UK has published a new report that looks at the ‘lived experiences’ of ethnic diversity at local community level. It also outlines a strategy for responding to the challenges faced by areas undergoing dramatic demographic change. The report includes a four-step plan to ensure councils are better placed to accommodate immigration and distribute central funds in the most suitable ways, starting by being more proactive about their understanding of trends affecting their local populations.
The economic case for business actors defending LGBTI rights – Open for Business: Launched at the Clinton Global Initiative, Open For Business is a coalition of leading global companies making the business and economic case for LGBTI inclusion. They have released a report with evidence that open, inclusive and diverse societies are better for business and economic growth.
Blogs and Other Sites of Interest
WATCH: ‘Women Of War,’ Documenting The Daily Lives Of Women In Conflict Zones: Iranian-born journalist Khazar Fatemi looks at what it is like for people to live through war, what does war mean to them and what can drive them to morph from civilian to combatant. ‘Women Of War,” is a series of short video dispatches for The Huffington Post that takes the viewer beyond the battlefield, from Afghanistan to Turkey, Syria and Iraq. The videos show women debating amongst themselves on how to invest a government grant, fight to stay in school, learn a martial art and express themselves through graffiti.
Child rights groups call on EU to adopt an ‘action plan’ to support young migrants: According to the Migrants’ Rights Network, fifty nine organisations across Europe working in the field of children and migrant rights have signed an open letter to EU president Donald Tusk. The letter calls on the EU to develop and implement concrete measures to ensure effective protection for all children affected by migration.
LISTEN TO: Migration is Not a Problem to be Solved, but a Challenge to be Managed: German Marshall Fund’s Migration Fellow Astrid Ziebarth gathered together leading practitioners Katrin Hirseland, chief of staff for the German Federal Office for Migration and Refugees; Anna Wittenborg, Head of Sector Migration and local Governance, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, and Adnan Kifayat, Senior Fellow for Leadership, Diversity and Inclusion Initiative with GMF, to discuss how different regions of the world are managing the migration issue, particularly Europe right now.
After a Long Haul, Refugees Settle Into New Lives Far from Home: American photographer Amanda Rivkin has been photographing refugees as they transit from Syria to Europe. Recently, she posted several of these photos to the Open Society Instagram feed. In this article, she talks about her experience documenting the refugees’ stories, and what she has observed of their attempts to settle into new lives far from their original homes.
WATCH: EU Fundamental Rights Agency videos on the Rights of the Child: In October 2015, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) published a series of animation films about the rights that children should enjoy when they are involved in judicial proceedings. These films are targeted at children to support professionals such as social workers or lawyers when they work with children. The films are available in 9 languages and can be freely embedded and downloaded. To accompany the films, there is also an infographic highlighting and summarising the different rights children in justice should enjoy.
WATCH: RightsInfo animation on Human Rights: Research has shown that around 70% of human rights coverage in the UK media is negative. As the country debates the future of human rights, RightsInfo has produced a 2 minute animation about human rights, aiming at offering accurate and engaging human rights information. RightsInfo also launched 16 infographics, each representing a different human right. They explain in plain-English where the rights come from, what they mean and why they matter.
PODCAST: Social Media and Social Change: analysing debates over valuation: During an event at London School of Economics, Walter W. Powell, Professor of Education, Sociology, Organisational Behavior, Management Science and Engineering, and Public Policy, Stanford University talked about how civil society is challenged to demonstrate its impact. Network and linguistic analyses of webpages reveal intense struggles among governments, businesses, and nonprofits to define effectiveness.
“The Closing Space Challenge: How are Funders Responding?” – new report by Thomas Carothers: In his new report on the closing space, Thomas Carothers (vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace) considers the efforts of public and private funders to deepen and diversify their responses to supporting civil society, and the challenges they face in mounting an effective and collective response. Also on this topic see Hungarian ruling party attacks local Human Rights Groups and George Soros over refugees and UNSR reports to UNGA70 on civil society space, HRDs, counter-terrorism & human rights.
Summary and Report of Civicus/ Human Rights Watch meeting on the closing space: CIVICUS and Human Rights Watch jointly hosted a two-day meeting on 14-15 October 2015 in Geneva that brought together over 40 civil society leaders. The gathering sought to engage in reflection to overcome the rising challenge of closing civil society space and identify opportunities for future collaborations. Common threats were discussed and participants consistently highlighted the need to develop a positive narrative, a proactive agenda, to popularise the issues, and broaden the conversation.
New Concepts in Dealing with Inequality – Predistribution Agenda: The UK based think tank Policy Network has published a series of articles looking at new ways of tackling inequality, which many funders may see as one of the defining current issues of the age. Rather than try to address the problem by seeking to re-distribute resources after inequality has occurred it seeks to prevent it in the first place.
GEO 2015 – The Source Codes of Foundation Culture: This resource from GEO Funders explores influences of founders and leaders that affect organisations’ internal cultures. Funders can use this document to support conversations among board and staff, examine beliefs and behaviours, and identify aspects of culture that drive or impede effective work.
New Funding Sources: An Introduction for Trustees: New Philanthropy Capital’s briefing paper for trustees looks at how charities are diversifying their income due to continual financial pressures. Two popular options in recent years have been social investment and crowdfunding. Yet many trustees still lack the level of understanding needed to make informed decisions about adopting these methods. Some of the key points outlined in the paper include: what are social investment and crowdfunding, what the role they can play in increasing a charity’s income is; and how to adopt these methods within an organisation.
Building a global alliance against child labour and forced labour: Beate Andrees, Chief of the ILO’s Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work Branch explains how can target 8.7 of the United Nations’ SDGs, which calls for an end to forced labour and child labour by 2025, can be achieved.
Alliance2015 Statement on the Refugee Crisis: Alliance2015 members, amongst this Hivos, work in many of the countries worst hit by the current refugee crisis, including Syria, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan. Through this statement, Alliance2015 members call upon European governments to address root causes of refugee migration.
Finding the unexpected impacts of human rights work: In this article, Muriel Asseraf, Institutional Development Coordinator at Conectas, argues that, when conducting human rights evaluations, it is just as important to look at the results we did not expect. Muriel states that evaluation should not only be seen as a results assessment, but instead, as a process that contributes to improve everyone’s institutional learning. This approach to evaluation also allows for discovering impacts that we might not have expected, and we might have otherwise missed.
Jobs and Tenders
Programme Officer, Youth Opportunity and Learning – Ford Foundation: The Ford Foundation’s office in West Africa seeks a dynamic and innovative Programme Officer to drive and shape the foundation’s work in the critical area of advancing Youth Opportunity and Learning. The Programme Officer will support the strategy of the West Africa Office and the broader social justice goals of the Ford Foundation. Location: Lagos, Nigeria. Deadline: Until Filled.
Programme Officer, Higher Education Support Programme – Open Society Foundations: Open Society Foundations is looking for a Programme Officer for its Higher Education Support Programme. The Programme Officer has responsibility for monitoring fields of interest to OSF, developing appropriate strategies and tools for fostering desired social change, managing relationships with other entities including potential and current grantees, OSF-affiliated foundations, other civil society and social change organisations, etc., making grant decisions, participating in collaborative decision-making both within OSF and with external entities, and related key responsibilities. Location: London. Deadline for application is November 22, 2015.
Equality and Human Rights Commission Chair – Department for Education, UK: The Chair has particular responsibility for ensuring the Board operates effectively and makes collegiate and inclusive decisions, and observes high ethical standards as set out in the Nolan principles for conduct in public life. Working in partnership with the Chief Executive, and other members of the Board, the Chair will have responsibility for strategic leadership of the Board in setting the overall direction, policy and plans for the Commission. Location: London. Deadline for applications is 30th November 2015.
Programme Officer – Human Dignity Foundation (Maternity Cover): Human Dignity Foundation is looking for a Programme Officer to develop and manage, in conjunction with the Executive Director, the HDF programme portfolio and related relationships in accordance with the HDF Strategic Framework. Location: London. Deadline for applications is 13th November 2015.
Grants Management Associate – American Jewish World Service (AJWS): The Grants Management Associate will be responsible for supporting the grants management team in implementing AJWS’s core grant-making portfolio and the donor-advised fund (DAF). S/he should be exceptionally systems-oriented with strong attention to detail and organisational abilities. S/he will work closely with programme teams to administer hundreds of grants to grantees and liaise with the Finance Department to ensure that payments are made in a timely manner. The Grants Management Associate reports to the Grants Manager and works in conjunction with the entire Programmes Division, as well as the larger organisation, to ensure the effective management of AJWS’s core and DAF grant-making. Location: New York. Deadline for applications: Ongoing.
Chief Executive – Pro Bono Economics (PBE): Pro Bono Economics (PBE) is a charity that matches volunteer economists with charities looking to address questions around measurement, results and impact. PBE is looking for a CEO to drive its new strategy. Reporting to the Board of Trustees, the individual must have the necessary management skills to oversee a significant expansion in the size of PBE whilst maintaining meticulously high standards. Location: London. The deadline for applications is noon on 16 November 2015.
Programme Officer, Macarthur Fellows Programme – MacArthur Foundation: The MacArthur Fellows Programme awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown exceptional creativity and dedication in their pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. There are three criteria for selection of MacArthur Fellows: exceptional creativity, promise for important future advances based on a track record of significant accomplishment, and potential for the fellowship to facilitate subsequent creative work. Location: New York. Deadline for applications: Until filled.
November 23rd -27th
Refugee Women in Germany tell their stories -Invitation Book Launch: IN OUR OWN WORDS – Refugee Women in Germany tell their stories contains texts by and about women and includes 10 testimonials of refugee women in Germany: women who could have migrated, but wouldn’t have been given a visa. Women who became refugees in their own regions before attempting to reach Europe by the deadly routes available. Women fleeing war, poverty and environmental disasters caused by corporation’s greed, women fleeing persecution for not conforming to the gender they were assigned at birth. Women running away from their own families for not accepting domestic violence perpetrated by patriarchy. The event is organised by the The International Women Space, which is a feminist political group of migrant and refugee women in Germany, formed in 2012 within the occupation of the Gerhart-Hauptmann School in Berlin Kreuzberg. IWS challenges dominant knowledge structures and fights against discriminatory policies and practices, which oppose the emancipation of refugee and migrant women and all women. Location: Berlin, TheaterSpielRaum, Bethanien-Südflügel, Mariannenplatz 2B, 10997 Berlin, 25th November, 2015.
November 16th – 20th
European Environmental Funders Group 5th Annual Meeting: The 5th annual meeting of this network will bring funders together with diverse stakeholders (NGOs, policy-makers, think-tanks, business, and others) to discuss systemic issues affecting the environmental agenda. This is an opportunity for networking, intelligence sharing, and strategic reflection on funding opportunities and start-ups. Location: Brussels, 17th –18th November, 2015.
November 16th – 20th
Tech for change: ICT’s, internet access and the post-2015 agenda: Digital Agenda Intergroup is organising a seminar in the aftermath of the Internet Governance Forum in Brasil. Increasing access to information and communications technology and providing access to the Internet in least developed countries by 2020 is one of the targets of the new UN Sustainable Development Goals. What are the current needs in the field, including in refugee camps? How can we achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development goals with due respect to the principles of net neutrality? These, and many other questions will be addressed at this event. Location: European Parliament Brussels, Tuesday, 17th November, 2015.
November 23rd – 29th
Visualizing the Nation. Post-Socialist ImagiNations: ERSTE Foundation is organising a two day conference focusing on the Central Eastern European region after the fall of communism. It looks at visual dimensions of nationalism, as it is considered one of the most visual of all political currents. Conferences on nationalism, though abundant, hardly ever address this connection. This conference aims to broaden the scope of interpretation, moving beyond an exploration of the political, sociological and philosophical aspects of the “imagined communities” of the present, and centers instead on the often overlooked but fundamental course of visualisation of the Nation. Location: Budapest, Eötvös Loránd University – Faculty of Humanities, 27th ‒28th November, 2015.
November 12th – 20th
Central European Forum 2015: On the eve of the Velvet Revolution anniversary, the Central European Forum 2015 will provide a platform for a discussion of the causes and possible solutions by writers, sociologists and political scientists from all over Europe about how dangerous factual information was deemed to be under dictatorship and still remains as dangerous in a democracy if factual information is drowned out by myths, half-truths and disinformation. This is particularly true now that Europe has plunged into a major crisis. Location: Bratislava & Banská Bystrica, 13th – 17th November, 2015.
November 16th – 20th
Network on Business, Conflict and Human Rights Annual Meeting: The Network will bring together researchers, practitioners and NGO members from various fields with the aim of researching and analysing the role of business in conflict situations reducing the human and people’s rights violations and any other negative social and environmental impact as well as other adverse consequences. It will also look at the potential role of companies in relation to peace building. Location: Geneva, Switzerland, 19th November, 2015.
November 19th – 21st and November 26th – 28th
CSI Expert Training: Social Investment & Impact, and Foundation Strategies for Impact: The Centre for Social Investment workshops introduce attendees to the fundamentals of CSI’s core issues: impact measurement, social innovation or foundation strategies. The Executive Training on Social Investment & Impact (November 19th – 21st) introduces its participants to the thinking and conceptualising of impact measurement, whilst the Executive Training on Foundation Strategies for Impact (November 26th – 28th) helps participants get in touch with essential basics that lead to reasonable, strategic decisions. Both events will take place in Heidelberg, Germany.
November 16th – 20th
Global Terrorism Index 2015: Steve Killelea, Executive Chairman of the Institute for Economics and Peace, will present findings from the Global Terrorism Index 2015, a metric for policymakers in their efforts to track and understand the impacts and underlying drivers of terrorism. This year’s Index will cast a new light on the current terrorist threat picture, exploring the actual impact of groups like ISIL, al Qa’ida and other non-state terrorist organisations. Location: Royal United Services Institute, London, 17th November, 2015.
November 16th – 20th
Lost Journeys: The Stories of Child Refugees: This multimedia initiative, featuring a theatre play followed by expert discussion and Q&A, offers a platform to reflect upon and analyse the journeys of children in flight, from the moment they start their journey to the point they reach their destination in Europe and the UK, tracing their experiences of the asylum process and their life after status recognition and/or as failed applicants. Location: Arts Two Lecture Theatre, Queen Mary University of London, 17th November, 2015.
November 23rd – 27th
The Movement of Refugees – asylum seekers and the EU: This year 350,000 migrants have arrived in Europe by sea, over 2,600 have drowned in the Mediterranean, and the flow of refugees shows no sign of reducing. Friends of Le Monde Diplomatique invite you to join representatives of the Migrants Rights Network, the UK Race and Europe Network (UKREN), and the Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM) to discuss this humanitarian problem. Location: The Gallery, London, 23rd November, 2015.
November 23rd – 27th
Can the ‘weight of evidence’ on impacts shape the future of international migration? This lecture presents a selection of findings from Europe and traditional immigration countries such as New Zealand. While there are cross-country differences in impacts due to differences in the composition of immigration flows and institutions, migration has generally yielded economic benefits in terms of labour market outcomes, the fiscal position, innovation, trade and growth. However, concerns about a limited ‘absorptive capacity’ of host societies are growing, particularly in Europe. Moreover, cross-border mobility has become much more complex and diverse than in the past. The lecture will suggest how the weight of the scientific evidence can assist policymakers to be responsive to these challenges. Location: Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building, LSE, 25th November, 2015.
December 7th – 11th
Fighting the Behemoth: Law, politics and human rights in times of debt and austerity: Recent events have put Greece in the spotlight and at the forefront of critical questions that connect human rights protection, democracy, debt, and austerity. Join the event and see Zoe Konstantopoulou expose the truth behind the debt and human crises in Greece. This event is free to attend and open to all with no ticket or pre-registration required. Entry is on a first come first served basis. Location: Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building, London School of Economics, London, 10th December, 2015.
November 29th – December 4th
EVPA Annual Conference – Different Voices, A shared Future: The EVPA Annual Conference is a meeting on venture philanthropy and social investment in Europe, attracting around 500 delegates annually, and bringing together a variety of players including social investors, donors, foundations, private equity organisations, advisory firms, private banks, academic institutions and some selected social entrepreneurs. Recognised experts and practitioners identified by an international conference committee lead the various debates, panels and round tables. Location: Madrid, Spain, 1st – 2nd December, 2015.
December 7th – 11th
Climate and refugees: What lessons learned from today’s Europe? The French Foundation Center and DAFNE (European network of foundation and donor networks) are organising a half day conference aiming at bringing first hand reflections on one of the twenty-first century major challenges. Today, every second, two new climate refugees appear. It is estimated that by 2050, climate refugees will be nearly 250 million worldwide. This challenge to climate change has become an undeniable reality yet it stills find no echo in international law. While the refugee phenomenon today calls into question the unity of Europe, how can we overcome the next challenge? By understanding what happens to us today, we will be able to better understand what will happen tomorrow. Location: Paris, 10th December, 2015. RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 23rd -27th
Global Terrorism Index launch: In partnership with The Italian Institute for International Political Studies (ISPI), Steve Killelea, Executive Chairman of the Institute for Economics and Peace, will present key findings from the 2015 Global Terrorism Index at the Library of the Chamber of Deputies, Rome. Location: Rome, 24th November, 2015.
December 14th – 18th
EFC & ERA Annual conference on rights of persons with disabilities 2015: The Academy of European Law (ERA) in cooperation with the European Foundation Centre (EFC) are organising the annual conference on the rights of persons with disabilities which will take place on the 14th and 15th December in Trier Germany. The event will also include a guided walking tour of Trier, Germany’s oldest city situated at the heart of the Mosel wine region and featuring UNESCO World Heritage sites. This event is intended for judges and lawyers working in the area of anti-discrimination or employment law, member state officials, representatives of NGOs, equality bodies and national human rights institutions and disability rights advocates.
October 29th – November 14th
Vienna/Serbia Raw – Our new neighbours: This exhibition is a result of photography workshops with refugees from the Middle East and Africa, which took place between May and July 2015 in Subotica, Belgrade and Vienna. The participants had the opportunity to reflect together upon their experience and needs, as well as to work with their already existing photographic material in order to depict their background and parts of their journey to Europe. Besides exploring the experiences of refugees, the project also examined the reactions of their new surroundings to their presence, as this aspect is one of the crucial elements for defining the position that they take in their new societies. Location: Vienna, 29th October – 14th November, 2015.
November 16th – 22nd
Conference on ‘Human Rights and Faith Perspectives’: This conference will explore approaches to human rights from a number of faith based perspectives. It will bring together academics, activists and the general public to share their experiences and to discuss effective strategies from a diversity of religious traditions and communities when addressing and campaigning around issues concerning human rights. Location: Council Room, Wolverhampton, United Kingdom, 21st November, 2015.
Ariadne is supported by Adessium Foundation, The Atlantic Philanthropies, Barrow Cadbury Trust, Ford Foundation, Oak Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Sigrid Rausing Trust and Zennstrom Philanthropies.
Ariadne is also supported by voluntary contributions from its participants.