News & Blogs

Storytelling for Impact: Summer Interns Reflect on their Projects
By: Tinia Montford and Brenda Urueta | August 16, 2021

As we approach the end of our fast-paced, 10-week summer internship program at Lever for Change, we have been trying to answer a question that is central to the work of the organization: How can we tell impactful stories that will accelerate large-scale change in philanthropy? To that end, we have evaluated how stories can and should engage an audience, how Lever for Change is using storytelling to write their own narrative as an organization, and what these findings mean for the future.

Cecilia Conrad headshot
The Power of Partnership
By: Dr. Cecilia Conrad | July 29, 2021
Newsletter Article

A friend of mine, a master teacher, is fond of an exercise in which she asks her students to briefly study a dime and then, without looking back at it, write down 10 of its features. Most can only recall two or three. Then she asks students to join forces in small groups and, working together, most can now reconstruct the full list. How does this apply to our work at Lever for Change? We’ve learned that working in partnership with others often leads to increased productivity and better outcomes for all.

A group of five women
Equality Can't Wait Challenge Awards $40 Million to Four Bold Ideas to Advance Gender Equality in the U.S.
By: Marc Moorghen | July 29, 2021
Press Release
Competition Update

Hosted by Pivotal Ventures, MacKenzie Scott and Dan Jewett, and Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies, The Challenge Will Award Additional Funding to Two Finalists and Feature Top Ideas On the New Equality Can’t Wait Idea Lab Website

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Renewable Thermal Collaborative Selected as Awardee of $10 Million Climate Challenge to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions in the U.S.
By: Marc Moorghen | June 22, 2021
Press Release
Competition Update

Funding Will Help Increase Industrial Renewable Thermal Energy 150 Percent and Slash Industrial Thermal Emissions 30% by 2030.

Stronger Democracy Award website registration
Additional $10 Million in Funding Announced for Stronger Democracy Award
June 21, 2021
Competition Update

Today, we’re thrilled to announce an anonymous donor from the ICONIQ Impact community has contributed an additional $10 million to the Stronger Democracy Award, bringing its total to $22 million! Two finalists will receive a $10 million grant, the first from Additional Ventures and the second from the anonymous donor. A third finalist will receive a $2 million grant from philanthropists Cipora and Vlado Herman.

An image of Dr. Cecilia Conrad smiling.
Lever for Change Honored to be Included Among MacKenzie Scott's 286 Teams Empowering Voices the World Needs to Hear
By: Dr. Cecilia Conrad | June 15, 2021

Since the inception of Lever for Change in 2019, we have developed and managed nine large-scale challenges to change the world. Working tirelessly toward our goal to unlock $1 billion in philanthropic giving by 2023, we have partnered with dozens of donors and amplified the work of hundreds of people and organizations with bold solutions to address the most intractable problems of our time.

Announcing Meadows Institute as the $10 M Lone Star Prize Recipient
Lyda Hill Philanthropies Announces Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute as Recipient of the $10 Million Lone Star Prize
June 15, 2021
Press Release
Competition Update

Four Finalist Projects Receive Additional Funding to Improve the Quality of Life of Texans

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100&Change: When a loss becomes a win
By: Rebecca Richards-Kortum Ph.D. | May 17, 2021
Newsletter Article

On April 7, six teams gave their final pitch to win $100 million in the MacArthur Foundation’s second 100&Change competition. That same day, five of them learned they lost. These teams will all keep working after the recipient is announced, but this loss cuts deep. I know, because I was part of a team that “lost” in the final round of the first 100&Change competition.

Bold Solutions Network Collage
Celebrating the one-year anniversary of our Bold Solutions Network
By: Dr. Kristen Molyneaux | May 17, 2021
Bold Solutions Network Update
Newsletter Article

Time flies. It’s been just over a year since our team at Lever for Change launched the Bold Solutions Network. Born of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation’s 100&Change competition for $100 million, Lever for Change unlocks capital that might otherwise remain on the sidelines. We embolden donors to make larger grants than are typical in philanthropy—$10 million or more—through customized competitions, which provide the opportunity for donors, nonprofits, and social entrepreneurs to connect and solve global challenges together. We then amplify the top-ranked solutions in our Bold Solutions Network to catalyze investments in outstanding teams and accelerate large-scale social change.

Cousins Majed (right) and Majida (left) study on their iPads provided by the Basmeh & Zeitooneh Education Program at Shatila Camp, Beirut after switching from face-to-face learning activities to online amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Learnings from our experience with the Larsen Lam ICONIQ Impact Award
By: Diana Essex-Lettieri and Sana Mustafa | May 17, 2021
Newsletter Article

As a family of national civil society organizations, Asylum Access believes in the power of “proximate” solutions: we know from our experiences that those closest to experiences of displacement are best placed to confront the obstacles that face their communities. As the movement for refugee leadership in response to refugee issues grew stronger, and the calls for refugee participation made it into prominent spaces – like the (UN Refugee Agency) UNHCR’s 2019 Global Refugee Forum – Asylum Access looked inward and asked: Where do we fit? How do we help? By our assessment, the calls for change were surface-level and lacked pathways for implementation. We needed massive investment for system-wide change. At the time, it was hard to envision unlocking that kind of funding.

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