Call for Submissions: New Profit’s Economic Mobility Catalyze Cohort
New Profit to Invest $1.6M in Sixteen Nonprofits Driving Economic Mobility in Partnership with Communities Across the NationJune 6, 2023
New Profit, the national venture philanthropy organization, will invest in 16 innovative organizations driving economic mobility results across the country, with an emphasis on supporting Black, Indigenous, and Latinx leaders. Support for this cohort is made possible by generous funding from the Ballmer Group and an anonymous donor, and builds on recent investments in eight high-impact organizations building an economy that works for all.
New Profit supports both organizations and ecosystem-building efforts aimed at advancing economic opportunity in America. New Profit has a deep track record of investing in innovations in this space, especially those advancing equity in the education to employment pipeline. We believe organizations that practice proximity are best positioned to catalyze responsive, sustainable change. Meaning, those organizations that center, learn from, and adapt to the needs of their core constituencies as a continuous practice. Further, we are committed to investing in true economic mobility – prioritizing solutions that hold a more expansive view of what it means to deliver results that repair deeply entrenched harms of the past and present, while also working to ensure future economic vitality for all Americans. Our vision is to support a variety of organizational models including direct, widespread, and systemic change through our core portfolio investments and ecosystem-building approaches.
About the Economic Mobility Catalyze Cohort
For this upcoming selection cycle, sixteen innovative nonprofit organizations will receive a $100,000 unrestricted investment, in-kind capacity-building support, and participation in a peer learning community over the course of one year.
At this time, we are particularly interested in making investments toward transformative strategies occurring along a spectrum of economic mobility interventions:
- Social Drivers of Employment Outcomes
Examples include increasing access to high-quality, affordable childcare, transportation, and housing to support economic opportunity.
- Pathways to Income Generation
Examples include equitable innovations in the labor market, such as developing solutions that promote skills-based hiring, living wage jobs, and worker power.
- Financial Health & Wealth Creation
Examples include driving reparations and guaranteed income solutions, increasing access to capital for entrepreneurship, and exploring ideas of community ownership.
Catalyze Support Model
New Profit offers a collaborative support model to support visionary social entrepreneurs and their organizations, creating value across several dimensions. Our support model includes participation in a peer learning community, 1:1 adaptive leadership coaching, connection to consultations with external content experts, New Profit’s tested capacity-building framework and tools, and $100,000 in unrestricted support.
While each cohort of social entrepreneurs requires tailored supports to meet their unique needs, the base of our capacity-building program includes the following:
- Refining impact model to advance systems change outcomes and connecting it to a compelling story of impact
- Assessing organizational strengths, capabilities, and opportunities for growth
- Building an effective, high-performance boards of directors
- Developing equitable and results-driven practices for managing teams and stakeholders
- Identifying effective practices for operational excellence in order to execute against organizational strategy (fundraising, finance, HR, and communications)
- 1-2 additional topics identified by cohort members as areas of support
Organizations applying to the Economic Mobility Catalyze cohort must meet the criteria listed below to apply. If your organization does not meet the eligibility criteria at this time, we advise you to not proceed with submitting an application and invite you instead to complete New Profit’s Discovery Form, which will help us consider you for future relevant funding opportunities. Please consider the following opportunities to connect with our team if you have additional questions about whether your organization would be a good fit for this investment selection cycle:
- If you have any questions about this investment cycle we encourage you to watch our informational webinar (recorded June 8) and review the related slides.
- Contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org with “2023 Economic Mobility Cohort” as the subject line.
The eligibility criteria are as follows:
- US communities served: Organization operates in and primarily serves communities in the United States
- 501(c)(3) status: Organization or fiscal sponsor must be a nonprofit with 501(c)(3) status.
- Budget Size: Organization’s annual operating budget should be between $250K and $2 million.
- Led by a social entrepreneur: Organization must be led by a social entrepreneur or social entrepreneurs. We define a social entrepreneur (often the CEO/ED or equivalent) as both the leader and final decision-maker of an organization’s internal/external strategy, daily operations, and financial decisions. Social entrepreneurs must also work for the organization on a full-time basis (~30 hours/week), with plans to remain at the organization through to the completion of the one-year grant term. We welcome organizations with co-leadership models to apply. For this cycle, we will be prioritizing entrepreneurs who identify as Black, Indigenous, and/or Latinx.
- In operation for at least 2 years: Organization has been in operation for at least the past two years as of June 26, 2023.
- Early-stage but not “seed”-stage: Organization considers itself past seed-stage (i.e., already has a functional operating model and approach) but is still relatively early-stage in terms of organizational growth and capacity. This criterion is less about the actual age of your organization (in terms of # of years in operation), and more about the stage of growth that you feel you are in right now, especially related to specific economic mobility initiatives.
- Not a previous New Profit grantee: Organization has not previously received investment from New Profit investment initiatives.
- Willing to be an actively engaged cohort member over the course of one year: Through deep pattern recognition based on learnings from our portfolio, we have found that pairing flexible capital with targeted capacity-building support can strengthen an organization’s ability to refine and expand their impact model, strategic capabilities, and sustainable growth orientation. With this in mind, we ask that social entrepreneurs seeking investment are also committed to active and meaningful participation in the following programming over the course of one year:
- Monthly 1:1 adaptive leadership coaching
- Every other month: 1:1 strategic advising
- Three in-person convenings (typically spread out over 2-3 days)
- Three 2-3-hour virtual learning sessions
Commitment and interest in attending all programming are required for investment selection. Programming typically requires a commitment of about 6-8 hours monthly on average. New Profit will cover travel, accommodation, and meal expenses for each in-person convening. The first few programming dates will be provided during the application process, and the team will work with the selected cohort to schedule the remaining programming dates.
We approach our investment selection process with deep curiosity and a focus on building relationships and mutual understanding to identify the most promising social entrepreneurs with potential for impact at scale. In consideration of your time and to support your planning and scheduling, we are sharing the stages of our selection process, as well as key milestones and dates. Note: You will be updated on the status of your application after each stage in the process
- Part I Application submission deadline: Monday, June 26, at 8pm ET/5pm PT: The application for this cycle will be split into two parts: Part I and Part II. All organizations will have the opportunity to submit a Part I application consisting of basic information (e.g. year founded, contact information, financial data and communities served), as well as a handful of short-form questions to better understand the organization’s program model, impact, and approach. Organizations will be given 3 weeks to complete this first round. Our team will conduct an internal review of applications to Part I to determine which organizations will be invited to complete the Part II application, which will primarily include a set of additional short-form questions.
- Part II Application submission deadline: Monday, July 31, at 8pm ET/5pm PT: Invited organizations will advance to this stage of the process, which will include additional short-form questions. Organizations will be given 2 weeks to complete this second round. Our team will conduct an internal review of applications to Part II to determine which organizations will be invited to Screening.
- Screening: A subset of organizations will advance to this stage to deepen our understanding of the work through interviews. This will consist of two interviews, in which our team will ask clarifying questions that build on what is shared in your overall application. Social entrepreneurs and other key stakeholders will also have opportunities to ask key questions for New Profit. We seek a mutual learning partnership and want to ensure organizations and their teams get time to get to know us as we get to know them. These screening interviews will start around September.
If you believe your organization fits the eligibility criteria, we invite you to complete the Part I Application by June 26th, 2023 at 8pm ET/5pm PT.
To learn more about the Economic Mobility application process, please refer to the following resources.
- Part I Application
- Part I Application Guide & FAQs
- We encourage all interested parties to attend our Informational Webinar on Thursday, June 8th, 2023. Please register to attend here.
For any questions, please contact email@example.com and include “2023 Economic Mobility Cohort” in the subject line. In addition to our informational webinar we will be holding “office hours” during the following times to answer any additional questions you may have. Each time slot is 10 minutes – please reserve your time using this link. Due to the expected volume of interest, securing a time will be first come first serve. Update: all office hours slots have been filled.
- Tuesday, June 13, 2023 at 12pm – 1pm ET
- Tuesday, June 20th, 2023 at 3pm -4pm ET
We invite you to share this opportunity with anyone in your network who may be interested.
About New Profit
New Profit is a venture philanthropy organization that backs social entrepreneurs who are advancing equity and opportunity in America. New Profit exists to build a bridge between these leaders and a community of philanthropists who are committed to catalyzing their impact. New Profit provides unrestricted grants and strategic support to a portfolio of organizations led by visionary social entrepreneurs to increase their impact, scale, and sustainability. It also partners with social entrepreneurs and other cross-sector leaders to shift how government and philanthropy pursue social change to ensure that all people can thrive. Since its founding in 1998, New Profit has invested over $350M in 200+ organizations and, through the America Forward Coalition’s collective advocacy efforts, has unlocked over $1.9B in government funding for social innovation.