A Big Year for Lever for Change

This was a big year for Lever for Change, capped off by our announcement that we exceeded our goal of driving $1 billion in funding to outstanding organizations with inspiring ideas. Since our launch in 2019, we have helped more than 145 organizations accelerate social impact. As we celebrated this milestone, we met many amazing people, virtually and in person, and, not surprisingly, the question we were asked most is, “How did you do it?”

Lever for Change is a new type of broker. We help donors find and fund opportunities to accelerate social change. We help organizations strengthen their case for funding and engage those donors. We focus on scale, a donor commitment of a minimum of $10 million to scale a single project or to scale and strengthen a field, but we also have options for donors who want to make smaller commitments. We deliver open, inclusive challenges that elevate ideas and issues that are bold and/or uncommon, and strong organizations with proximate leadership.

We thank the many donors, organizations, and others who are collaborators in the creation of this new philanthropic tool: the teams who have submitted proposals to our open-calls and engaged in our participatory review processes; our independent, mostly volunteer, evaluators who have given constructive feedback to applicants; the donors willing to commit to making a big grant to a project selected through an open call; the donors who have funded strong projects and organizations unearthed through those open calls; and the investors in Lever for Change.

We concluded three successful challenges in 2022: the Stronger Democracy Award, Racial Equity 2030, and Build A World Of Play. Through collaboration, we unlocked over $219 million and leveraged $10.5 million in additional funding to support 13 organizations with great initiatives.

"We are thrilled to be able to support the work of organizations that are making a difference in the world and look forward to continuing our work for effective solutions accelerating social change."

Cecilia Conrad, CEO, Lever for Change

The LEGO Foundation’s Build A World Of Play Challenge drew more than 625 submissions from 86 countries. Today, the LEGO Foundation announced five awardees who are making substantial contributions to the lives of children from birth to six years old, with the aim of sparking a global movement to prioritize early childhood development.

In October, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation announced the awardees for its $80 million Racial Equity 2030 challenge. The Challenge recognized organizations demonstrating bold solutions to help build and scale actionable ideas for transformative change in the systems and institutions that perpetuate racial inequality.

In the summer, our partners Additional Ventures, The Patchwork Collective, philanthropists Cipora and Vlado Herman, and ICONIQ Impact announced the recipients of the $22 million Stronger Democracy Award. The Award was launched in 2021 to drive structural reforms to help improve political representation and increase the participation of all citizens in the United States democratic process.

In the upcoming year, Lever for Change will continue supporting organizations with bold solutions. We are excited about the forthcoming Maternal and Infant Health Award announcement and the projects that will improve maternal and infant health outcomes worldwide.

We are also working diligently with our partners to launch the next round of challenges in 2023. We are thrilled to be able to support the work of organizations that are making a difference in the world and look forward to continuing our work for effective solutions accelerating social change. Stay tuned!

Thank you for your continuing support of our work.

Cecilia Conrad

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