Malcom X famously said, “When ‘I’ is replaced with ‘We’, even the illness becomes wellness”. For those of us in the nonprofit sector, this sentiment resonates across both our daily and professional lives. Nonprofit organizations, especially smaller nonprofits, invest so much time, effort, and heart into giving to their communities and fulfilling their missions. Sometimes, this results in very little time and resources left over for them to invest in sustaining themselves.
Additionally, there is a systemic issue of lack of information on how to navigate the nonprofit fundraising landscape, leading to challenges that may feel overwhelming. This deeply affects organizations led by and that serve people of color. Systemic racism pervades philanthropy, from who is making funding decisions, to how information is shared with potential grantees, to who receives funding. As a result, BIPOC-led organizations are often excluded from foundation funding, limiting their ability to achieve sustainability.
Calvin Koon-Stack, Spark Point’s Director of Foundation Strategy, has seen this again and again in his years of advising nonprofits. “Getting started with fundraising can be difficult for new nonprofits, and often it’s confusing to know where to begin, leading to a sense of not even knowing what you don’t know.”
Aiming for a sustainable way to tackle this challenge, Calvin spearheaded Spark Point’s newest initiative: the ACCELERATE! program. ACCELERATE! is an affordable and effective solution that prepares small nonprofit teams to begin building their grants portfolio. The program has been thoughtfully designed to function as an informational course to help early-stage nonprofits while also providing them with the opportunity to network with others that share similar goals and challenges.
ACCELERATE! participants will attend twelve learning sessions over six months, all of which are focused on understanding the grants fundraising landscape, in a cohort-style setting. This structure will allow participants to connect and learn together. In addition to the learning sessions, there will be supporting tools and templates, group conversations, and readings. This is not a traditional consulting relationship; instead it is a support system designed to help you succeed.
By the time an organization completes this program, it will have the internal knowledge and skills to effectively build a foundation/grants fundraising portfolio as well as a network of colleagues to lean on. In short, participants will have the tools their organization needs for long-term fundraising success.
We are currently accepting applications for the ACCELERATE! Program; the application period will end on October 31, 2022. Applicants will be notified by January 5th, 2023.
To learn more about our ACCELERATE! program, you can read more here!
If you’d like to apply to the ACCELERATE! program, submit your application here!
Not sure if your organization is ready to pursue building a grants portfolio? Download our freemium grants-ready checklist here!