How it works
Employing a strategic “venture philanthropy” model, SDSVP Partners invest their time and professional expertise, as well as money, to support the growth and sustainability of highly effective organizations.
Partners Pool Their Resources
Members, called Partners, join SDSVP by making an annual contribution of $5,000 or more. These funds, along with professional expertise and vast networks, are leveraged to gain greater impact. Together, we select promising nonprofits poised for the next stage of development and impact to the community.
Identifying Promising Nonprofits
Nonprofit organizations, called Investees, are selected through a committee of Partners. The award includes both unrestricted cash grants and skilled volunteer expertise. These investments are three-year relationships focused on building capacity to achieve a next-stage vision for the organization and a scalable, lasting positive impact for the community.
Strengthening the Organization as a Whole
When Partners select an Investee, we assess the organization to determine where help is most needed and surround them with the resources to make them stronger. Building upon the programmatic expertise of the Investee, SDSVP helps the organization strengthen its management practices, strategies, and systems. With access to skilled volunteers, Investees can improve in many areas, including board development and governance, leadership development, financial management, fund development, information technology, marketing, PR and communications, human resources, strategic outcome planning, and legal.
A Multi-Year Partnership
SDSVP seeks to develop true partnerships with nonprofits. Our approach is unique, and most nonprofits are not accustomed to a funder being involved with the internal operations of their organization. Once selected, an SDSVP Partner is assigned as a Lead Partner to work with each Investee. The Lead Partner, acting as a project manager, assists the Investee in prioritizing their organizational capacity goals, developing their annual work plan, and coordinating a team of volunteer consultants. Investees participate in an annual review process to measure progress on goals, assess volunteer projects and use of SDSVP resources. There are generally six Investees working with SDSVP in any given year, and funding relationships last three years.
Other Forms of Assistance
Although most nonprofit organizations appreciate financial support, SDSVP receives an increasing number of requests for time and expertise. As a result of our Partners' commitment to the community, we have reached more than 100 nonprofits in addition to our Investees with our Resource Teams. From helping a college-prep organization hire a new Executive Director to leading a strategic planning session with a homelessness task force resulting in $13 million in funds to San Diego, the impact has been both broad and deep.