2022 Civic Fabric Voter Engagement: Impact Report


Civic Fabric Donors

For the first time ever, The Denver Foundation funded eight nonprofits working on voter engagement efforts prior to the 2022 November election through our Civic Fabric Fund. The awards from the Civic Fabric Fund totaled $115,000 and were intended to support organizations working to register and mobilize new and low-turnout voters from historically underrepresented communities.

The eight organizations and the work that received funding were: 

This impact report highlights some of the successes and outcomes achieved by these organizations and identifies some of the challenges and needs for future work. This report reflects the content shared by seven grantees through their final reports.


The reach and impact of these nonprofits around voter engagement cannot be overstated. Altogether, these seven organizations reported a total reach of more than 14 million

With this funding supporting their work, organizations reported:

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When reflecting on some of the major successes of the work, organizations shared two primary effective strategies and tactics:  

  1. Finding ways to deliver a more localized, community-based approach to reach, engage, and educate voters.
  2. Developing tailored tools (messaging, language, method) unique to the priority community.

More specifically, organizations shared: 

  • Partnering with local groups to host educational events and share educational materials about statewide ballot measures, and expanding reach into younger Latino/a community through the creation of English and Spanish social media.  
  • Deploying a regionalized approach to voter engagement allowed for the development of more authentic, local relationships.  
  • Translating a voter guide into Spanish for the first time increased the reach and diversity of those able to access information about the election.  
  • Tailoring outreach and engagement to each unique community by partnering with direct service organizations and developing community-based, bilingual field organizers to support in-person outreach.  
  • Creating effective ads that were grounded in positive messaging and were inspiring and relevant to the priority audience.  
  • Building a bigger base of issue-focused voters allows for better and more effective targeting and voter engagement work, including increasing local race involvement.  
  • Using a relational organizing model to recruit, train, and support ambassador outreach to family, friends, and acquaintances, increasing Black people participating in civic engagement.  


In the spirit of learning and surfacing opportunities for future work, organizations shared the following three lessons learned in the face of identified ongoing challenges:

1. They learned of the ongoing need to educate Colorado’s voters on challenging and complicated issues (including the many different options available in Colorado and the complexity of tax policy and its implications).

“We learned that many of Colorado’s immigrant voters are not aware of the unique opportunities our state presents for voting, such as ranked-choice voting, ballots in various languages, etc. We learned that first, we need to make sure that Colorado voters are aware of these reforms and the unique opportunities our state presents.”


2. They learned of the need to provide enough time and internal capacity to stay ahead of the cycle and to be able to rapidly respond in the face of a fluid- and fast-moving environment, as well as give themselves enough time to develop culturally responsive tools. 

“Election stories develop over time, and in order to report on, and thus translate, the most accurate information, these stories need various rounds of fact-checking, source tracking, and additional comprehension review in the translated language.”


3. They learned the importance of continuously making sure advertising strategies and messaging align with the priority audience.

“Our digital partner pointed out in his final report, that [we] exceeded his expectations for our messaging. He attributed it to the quality of ads in delivering inspiring, relevant ads to the universe we sought to influence. He also pointed out that our positive messaging approach contributed to the overall success of our digital strategies.”


We are proud to have supported these organizations and their voter engagement work through the Civic Fabric Fund at The Denver Foundation. These organizations are effectively and passionately reaching historically underrepresented voters and engaging them in the political process. The rate of participation in the 2022 midterm elections shows the first decline in Colorado turnout in 20 years, despite Colorado still ranking in the top six states overall. This tells us that despite the successes shared here, we can do more to better engage voters —particularly American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian American or Pacific Islander, Black, Indigenous, and Latino/Latina communities, and those living in economically disadvantaged communities 

To support this work and learn more about The Denver Foundation’s Civic Fabric Fund, our policy priorities, and how we are engaging in advocacy, please contact Naomi Amaha, director of policy and government affairs at namaha@denverfoundation.org.  To give to the Civic Fabric Fund, click this link to be directed to the donation page for this fund.  

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