SVPLA SYSTEMS CHANGE
A­CCELERATOR

 for emerging initiatives tackling the root cause of pressing social problems in Los Angeles

“…this was a completely transformational experience, on a personal and organizational level.”.png

program overview

The SVPLA Systems Change Accelerator is a nine-month program accelerating the growth and impact of a cohort of systems change initiatives in Los Angeles County. The Accelerator blends workshops, coaching, peer learning, and 1:1 mentoring to support nonprofit leaders in honing their systems change strategy, clarifying and amplifying their message, and growing their network of relationships and resources while grounding their work in the equity and justice. We’ve found that supporting these foundational elements uniquely accelerate an organization’s ability to create systemic community impact.

We define systems change as work that tackles the root causes of pressing social problems. As distinct from direct service work, systems change initiatives (1) acknowledge the complex, interrelated political/social/economic factors contributing to a social problem, and (2) seek to tackle the root causes of pressing social problems, creating change in underlying inequitable structures by shifting policies, processes, resources, and power structures. 

We see an opportunity to create exponential positive change in Los Angeles through this focus on root causes, by channeling the unique skills, networks, and expertise of the cohort and our SVP Partners (our donor volunteers with deep cross-sectoral experience in business growth & development, leadership, and coaching) in support of these endeavors. 

The program will run from October 2019 to June 2020, and will include participation in SVP’s signature Fast Pitch Program. Participating organizations will receive an unrestricted seed grant of $10,000 and will be eligible for additional cash prizes through the Fast Pitch portion of the program. See the 2018-2019 Accelerator Cohort.

Continue reading below for information on 2019-2020 program dates, how to apply, and the eligibility criteria.

2019 - 2020 program dates

Phase 1: Liberatory Systems and Workplaces

  • Wednes. October 9th, 2019  (10am – 4pm)

  • Thurs. October 10th, 2019  (10am – 4pm)

  • Wednes. November 13th, 2019 (11am – 4pm)

  • Thurs. November 14th, 2019 (11am – 4pm)

  • Wednes. December 4th,2019 (11am – 2pm)

Phase 2: Fast Pitch 2020

  • Tues. January 14th, 2020 (10am – 2:00pm)

  • Tues. January 28th, 2020 (11am – 2:00pm)

  • Tues. February 11th, 2020 (11am – 2:00pm)

  • Tues. February 25th, 2020 (11am – 2:00pm)

  • Tues. March 10th, 2020  (11am – 2:00pm)

  • TBD - Likely either Thurs. March 19th OR Thurs. March 26th, 2020 (5pm – 9pm)

  • Thurs. April 2nd, 2020  (12pm - 2pm)

Phase 3: Expanding Community Connections

  • Thurs. April 23rd, 2020

  • Thurs. May 21st, 2020

  • Thurs. June 18th, 2020

  • Tues. June 23rd, 2020


HOW TO APPLY

  1. Read the Eligibility Criteria (below).

  2. If you meet the criteria, submit the Eligibility Questionnaire by Tuesday, July 16th, 2019 at 5:00pm PST.

  3. Eligible candidates will be contacted by SVPLA to progress through the selection process.

ELIGIBILITY criteria

Organizations must meet all of the below criteria in order to be eligible for the Accelerator:

● Nonprofit organization – Applicants must have a designation from the IRS as a 501(c)3 organization, or proof of fiscal sponsorship at the time of submitting the online Eligibility Questionnaire.

● Systems Change Focus - Applicant’s organization or initiative must have a systems change focus. We define systems change as work that tackles the root causes of pressing social problems that produce inequitable outcomes. Systems change efforts (1) acknowledge the complex, interrelated political/social/financial factors contributing to a social problem, as well as the applicant organization’s role in this eco-system, and (2) seek to address the underlying policies, processes, relationships, behaviors, and power structures that are contributing to the problem. We are looking for organizations that are working to alter the status quo by transforming systems, and rethinking the boundaries of what is possible. See more information and questions to help you to determine whether your work is systems change, at our Accelerator FAQ page.

● Location – We have a strong preference for LA-based organizations. If you’re part of a national organization or are headquartered elsewhere, you are still invited to apply. Tell us how your program significantly impacts LA County.

● Early Stage Endeavors - The organization or initiative must be in the early stages of growth and development, but must have some proof of concept. Larger, established organizations may apply to the program only if their participation in the Accelerator would focus on a new, systems-change initiative being developed or implemented by their organization.

● Organization Representative – The individual participating in the Accelerator on behalf of their organization must hold the title of Executive Director, CEO, or equivalent position with significant organization-wide decision-making responsibility, and should have at least six months of tenure with the organization. Participants should work or live in LA County in order to utilize the coaching resources available. We also invite additional organizational team members to participate in some of the workshops throughout the course of the program.

● Ability to participate in all workshop dates - Applicants must be able to attend all workshop dates outlined.

● Organization Size, Years in Operation – There are no restrictions on size of organizational budget, staffing, or years in operation.

● SVPLA Fast Pitch Alumni – Fast Pitch semifinalist organizations (those who did not present on stage) are eligible to apply. Fast Pitch finalist organizations (those who presented on stage) are not eligible for this program.                                                            

ready to apply?

If you are ready to submit the Eligibility Questionnaire, click here.

 

QUESTIONS?

If your question isn’t answered in the Accelerator FAQ, we welcome you to email us if you have any questions about eligibility, program participation requirements, or the application process.

CONTACT: Sharon Stratton, Social Venture Partners | Email: sstratton@svpla.org