Update on Funding & Upcoming Opportunities

May 17, 2021

At Lever for Change, we prioritize ensuring that our processes and approaches provide value and raise the visibility of bold solutions. While we continued to learn, evolve, and improve over the past year, we have seen strong evidence that being a member of the Bold Solutions Network proves valuable not only for teams who ultimately receive an award, but for all members.

Some of this value-add is built into the Lever for Change competition process. In a recent survey conducted by our learning partners at TCC Group, 63 percent (N=68) of Bold Solutions Network members reported that they have been able to incorporate the feedback they received as a part of the competition process into proposals for other grants. Nearly one-third of respondents (31 percent) said that they had been awarded funding for at least one of the proposals into which they incorporated the feedback received as a part of the competition process. Further, Bold Solutions Network members’ responses suggest that participation in a Lever for Change competition process opens doors to conversations with new donors. On average, respondents reported having meetings with five new donors related to the work that they proposed for a Lever for Change competition in the past year, and 32 percent confirmed that their organization received funding from new donors for this proposed work.

Simultaneously, we at Lever for Change continue to work to raise the visibility of Bold Solutions Network members’ proposals and their incredible work. Since launching the Bold Solutions Network in February 2020, we have shared members’ proposals with potential donors a total of 1,865 times. As a result, other funders and philanthropists have committed over $288 million to date to support bold solutions. These leveraged funds amplify the over $283 million in awards that will be made through Lever for Change competitions, for a total of over $571 million unlocked for Bold Solution Network members’ impactful solutions. With our sights set on the goal of unlocking $1 billion, we are excited to have already passed the half-way mark and hopeful for what the future holds.

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Upcoming Opportunities for Bold Solutions Network Members

Bold Solutions Network members have access to ongoing learning opportunities offered through Lever for Change. Since June 2020, Members have participated in an array of workshops, webinars, coaching, and consulting sessions on a range of topics such as fundraising, organizational resilience, leadership, advocacy, finance, and public speaking. This year, the Bold Solutions Network will continue to provide opportunities for organizational growth and development to unlock more capital.

Leadership Accelerator Programs

The Bridgespan Group is offering its Accelerator Programs, a series of online- and team-based programs to support executive teams in tackling critical strategy and organizational issues. This year, Lever for Change will cover the participation fee for up to 10 Bold Solutions Network organizations who are admitted into the Fall session of one of the four programs in the Leadership Accelerator series: Achieving Strategic Clarity, Investing in Future Leaders, Strengthening the Executive Team, and Creating an Adaptive Plan. This opportunity is for financially independent non-profit organizations with a yearly operating budget under $60 million. If you are interested in a Leadership Accelerator Program, please schedule a call with our colleagues at Bridgespan to determine whether the program is a good fit for your team at this time.

Feminine Leadership Series

IMAGO Global Grassroots will continue to host a cohort of female leaders in monthly coaching circles as a part of their Female Leadership series. Female leaders from the Network use these spaces to share advice, expertise, and experiences on organizational management and feminism in the workplace. 43 women from 24 Bold Solutions Network organizations participated in the first circle in May. If you are interested in participating in a coaching circle, email Jimena Vallejos.

IMAGO will also host a Dialogue Series on Feminine Leadership with members of the Bold Solutions Network. The series will introduce the concept of feminine leadership and explore opportunities for applying and promoting the different traits associated with this type of leadership as an alternative approach for both men, women, and non-binary leaders from the Bold Solutions Network. These webinars are open to all members. Over the course of four sessions, we will explore the following topics: (1) What is Feminine Leadership; (2) Feminine Leadership in me; (3) Seeing & Sensing Feminine Leadership; (4) Applying Feminine Leadership. The first session will take place June 17 from 9:30 to 11:00 am CT. Register here for the Dialogue Series.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Workshops

IMAGO Global Grassroots will offer a two-part workshop series on diversity, equity, and inclusion in August. The first workshop, Building a Common Language Justice, Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion (JEDI), will introduce key concepts to assist organizations with developing a basic understanding of DEI needs and identifying common opportunities for transformation. The second workshop, Beyond the Performative and the Technical: Identifying What Works, will allow organizations to look inward and take the learnings into shifts in policies, practices, and approaches. Participating organizations will receive one-on-one coaching with IMAGO staff to develop DEI policies and strategy.

Strategic Financial Planning

The Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) will host a two-part webinar series on strategic financial planning in September and October. The first webinar, Planning for Effective Capitalization, will cover the basics of capitalization and distinctions between the types of resources that can help organizations achieve their goals. The second webinar, Building Long-Term Financial Health to Manage Risk and Leverage Opportunity, will assist organizations with identifying financial risks and building a better understanding of the kinds of resources needed to manage them, as well as how to articulate short- and long-term financial needs. Participating organizations will also receive specialized group and one-on-one coaching with NFF over the course of the following year.

Development and Scaling Up

Continuing the success of the Accelerate for Impact initiative in India, Sattva will launch a new Accelerate for Impact cohort program for Bold Solutions Network members based in the Asian and Pacific region this fall. Participating organizations will be offered organizational development support in areas such as fundraising, communication, partnerships, and more. Participants will also receive mentorship and coaching from experts in the field, networking opportunities, and organizational assessments from the Sattva team. Sattva will also offer a Masterclass Workshop for U.S.-based members this summer. Stay tuned for details!

IMAGO Global Grassroots will offer an intensive four-week course, Scaling Up for Social Impact, in October which will introduce members to IMAGO’s analytical scaling framework, methods, and resources while tapping into the collective experience of social organizations from the Network to build scaffolding for scaling. Participants will reflect on their readiness to scale, understand the gaps they need to address before scaling, and the different pathways to scale. Organizations will also receive individualized coaching.

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