SVP Pittsburgh and the Equity | Impact Center is proud to announce the selection of the participants for the 2023 Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator Program!
The Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator, facilitated by Leigh Solomon Pugliano, is a proven capacity-building program designed to improve organizational efficiency, program implementation, and financial sustainability, and increase overall impact, through an equity-centered lens. The organizations in this years program will accelerate their growth through strategic workshops, impactful mentorship by our SVP Coaches, and relationship-building and networking opportunities.
Learn more about the 2023 Full Circle program participants below!
2023 Full Circle Organizations
Communitopia exists to provide transformative climate change education that develops today’s climate leaders and advances equitable solutions with a vision to live in a world where solution-based climate change education will transform community thought and practice resulting in empowered and healthy local communities.
Visit the Communitopia website to learn more!
The Pittsburgh Robotics Network has grown and supports the regional robotics and autonomous systems businesses, careers and capital investments in southwestern Pennsylvania. The Pittsburgh Robotics Network envisions their commercial cluster to be the largest, and most successful in the world, offering competitive, sustainable and equitable opportunities for southwestern Pennsylvania.
Visit the Pittsburgh Robotics Network website to learn more!
We Are Beautiful Outreach Program, Inc. provides quality mental health services and mentorship to young girls and women ages 5-18 years old and up. They are dedicated to building up the self-esteem of their program participants and cultivate the beauty within them. They also provide a safe space for girls to connect with mentors, learn and grow, and become female leaders who will positively impact the world.
Visit the We are Beautiful Outreach Program, Inc. website to learn more!
Women in Tech PGH (WIT PGH) is a human-centered workforce development and community for women in technology and growing companies who aim to impact 31,000 women in technology through community and human-centered skill development as they reinvent the path towards economic mobility.
Visit the Women in Tech Pittsburgh website to learn more!
Follow and connect with each organization to learn about their journey throughout the Full Circle Accelerator program! We hope to see you on Thursday, Dec. 7, from 5-7PM, to support each organization and celebrate the completion of the Full Circle program at the Final Pitch event.
We’re excited to announce the fellows for our SVP Pittsburgh program! The 2023-2024 cohort of SVP Fellows were selected from an impressive pool of applicants. This year’s fellows will bring unique expertise and diverse experiences to SVP and the Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator Program, along with a passion for social justice, equity, and community engagement.
The SVP Fellowship is an 18-month-long program designed to provide the opportunity for those interested in civic engagement to bring their knowledge, skills, and expertise to nonprofit organizations in the region. The program offers professional development, increases knowledge on social issues and inequities that affect our community, and allows participants to build an expanded network within the nonprofit and corporate sectors.
Read about our 2023 Fellows below and learn more about SVP Pittsburgh program!
2023 SVP Fellows
Markeya Lowry – Markeya, born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, started her journey with writing just a short time ago. After graduating from Cal U of PA in 2009, with a BA in Sociology, Markeya went off to do her due diligence in social service working with high school students, troubled youth, homeless families, and individuals diagnosed with mental health and substance abuse. It was shortly after the birth of her lovely daughter, Navi Ahavah, that she was inspired to write her children’s book series, On a Mission, and created Birth of Ahavah LLC which provides trained birth doula and life coaching services.
Lindsey Aquino-Robles – Lindsey, originally from Santa Cruz, CA, currently works in the Mayor’s Office as a Community Liaison, supporting the 90 neighborhoods in the city. After graduating from Saint Mary’s College of California with a BA in Politics and a BA in Spanish Linguistics, Lindsey moved to Pittsburgh to complete the year-long Coro Fellowship in Public Affairs. She serves on the board of ALPFA, and continues to support Senderos, a nonprofit organization in Santa Cruz that teaches Latino culture and history through dance and music. In her free time, she enjoys going on runs, volunteering, and finding new places to eat!
Shanae Phillips – Shanae has served as the Managing Director at Radiant Hall since 2018. She has a background in the visual arts and nonprofit administration and holds a Master’s Degree in Arts Management from Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College of Management. Since moving from Austin, TX, in 2010, Shanae has worked in Pittsburgh’s nonprofit arts sector for organizations including the Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at CMU, The Andy Warhol Museum, Bach Choir of Pittsburgh, The Denis Theatre Foundation, and City of Asylum. She also currently serves as a board member for the Society to Preserve the Millvale Murals of Maxo Vanka.
Christine Gameos – Christine is currently the Program & Community Engagement Coordinator with Strong Women, Strong Girls, where she builds community partnerships and opportunities for youth. Christine’s career matches her passion for youth development and advocacy for survivors of domestic violence, trauma, and displacement. After earning her Master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh (GSPIA), she conducted postgraduate research on Education in Emergencies (EiE) in Greece’s largest refugee camp. She also supports the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Girl Scouts of Western PA, and the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) initiatives, while striving for equitable access to advocacy, education, and opportunity for all.
Kaceme Djellouli – Kaceme currently serves as the Director of Operations at The Education Partnership where he distributes school supplies to local under-resourced schools. He earned a business administration degree in Supply Chain Management from Duquesne University in 2018 and a Certification in Planning and Inventory Management in 2019. Kaceme leverages his expertise to build an infrastructure that serves Pittsburgh’s communities in need. Previously, he served in the US military from 2006-2011 and was awarded the Humanitarian Service Medal for his work in Haiti. The experience inspires him to continue helping communities in need where the impact is greatest in the US.
Follow us on socials @svppgh to stay updated about all things SVP Pittsburgh!
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh and The Equity | Impact Center are collaborating to re-launch SVP Pittsburgh’s capacity-building program for small and mid-sized nonprofits in the Pittsburgh region. The Full Circle Accelerator Program addresses the key strategic and tactical operational challenges that nonprofits are experiencing with an intentional focus on equity. The three organizations selected for the 2022 cohort represent a diverse group of nonprofit organizations and leaders making a significant impact in our community. The selected nonprofits will engage in an intensive 14-week accelerator program that combines strategic consulting, workshops, networking and a pitch event. The program focuses on three areas of organizational effectiveness; growth strategy, financial sustainability, and communicating impact. The nonprofit leaders in the cohort will work with teams of coaches (SVP Partners) who bring various skills and expertise to support in developing strategic solutions to their growth challenges. Full Circle intentionally incorporates a space for the corporate and nonprofit sector to connect, build relationships, and develop collective solutions. The program culminates with the Final Pitch event on November 17th, which provides a platform for nonprofit leaders to tell their impact story.
The Citizen Science Lab (TCSL) is Pittsburgh’s first community life sciences laboratory. A space where hands-on, discovery-based learning and STEM enrichment fuel inquisitive minds and enthusiasm for all things science. The Citizen Science Lab is a nonprofit OPEN TO ALL to observe, analyze, and explore the life sciences.
The Sisters Lifting As We Climb Network is an intergenerational, personal, and professional support network for women of color. The Sisters Lifting As We Climb Network’s mission is to serve as a conduit to advance economic mobility for Black women while amplifying their voices and visibility in the City of Pittsburgh and beyond.
Radiant Hall’s mission is to create and preserve studio environments for working artists. Radiant Hall provides a vibrant, sustainable support network for artists, centered around safe, functional, and affordable studio space. Radiant Hall enables a diverse community of artists specializing in a variety of disciplines to work alongside each other in a forward-thinking environment that fosters professional growth, experimentation, collaboration, and inspiration. Their work serves the Pittsburgh region in its aspiration to become a welcoming, inclusive, and viable community for all artists.
The Full Circle Accelerator Program is facilitated by Leigh Solomon Pugliano, President and CEO of the Equity |Impact Center. Nonprofits that successfully complete the program will receive an unrestricted financial award, professionally produced video, and additional resources/contributions from SVP Partners and program sponsors.
The Equity | Impact Center addresses systemic inequity through broad social, cultural, and economic solutions and comprehensive, intentionally designed initiatives. The Equity | Impact Center provides capacity-building, leadership development, and organizational development support to advance social justice missions through programs and initiatives that address systemic inequity.
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh is a community of engaged philanthropists who contribute their expertise, skills, networks, and finances to grow the impact of nonprofits and tackle our community’s greatest challenges. SVP Pittsburgh’s core program is the Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator, which connects SVP Partners as executive coaches to accelerate the impact of Pittsburgh’s most innovative nonprofits.
Upcoming SVP Pittsburgh Events
Happy Hour with a Purpose
Current and prospective SVP Partners should join us on Tuesday, September 20th from 5 – 7 pm at Blue Sky (211 N Whitfield St, Pittsburgh, PA 15206) in East Liberty for a SVP Partner “Happy Hour with a Purpose”. Connect with SVP Partners, learn more about becoming an SVP Partner, and meet the nonprofit leaders in the current cohort. RSVP here.
Full Circle Final Pitch
SAVE THE DATE for our Full Circle Final Pitch on Thursday, November 17th at 5PM. Learn about the impact of the incredible organizations in our program. More details to come.
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh and the Equity | Impact Center are collaborating for the 2022 Full Nonprofit Accelerator, a capacity-building program for small and mid-sized nonprofits in the Pittsburgh region. The Full Circle Accelerator Program is designed to address the key strategic and tactical operational challenges that nonprofit organizations and their leaders experience.
Full Circle is a proven capacity-building program designed to improve organizational efficiency, program implementation, financial sustainability, and increase overall impact. The 14-week cohort program incorporates workshops, mentoring, networking opportunities, and a pitch event. The program allows SVP’s Partners who serve as mentors and coaches to provide nonprofit leaders with resources, expertise, and strategic solutions that better prepare them to solve immediate and ongoing challenges within their organizations. Full Circle is designed to increase impact and improve overall financial sustainability. This year’s program will address the impact of COVID-19 and includes an intentional DEI focus for leaders seeking to improve their knowledge, skills, and awareness. There is no cost to participate in Full Circle. Nonprofits that successfully complete the program receive a $3,000 unrestricted award as well as additional resources, support, and financial contributions from SVP Partners and program sponsors. The Full Circle program culminates with the final pitch event, which provides a platform for nonprofit leaders to share their organization’s mission, impact, and organizational goals and needs to a broader audience.
The Full Circle curriculum areas of focus include:
- Organizational Growth Strategy
- Financial Sustainability
- Storytelling: Communicating Impact
- Organizations that apply must be designated as 501(c)3 nonprofit organization (or have a fiscal sponsor) operating in or around Allegheny County.
- Organizations that apply must designate at least two leadership staff who will participate consistently throughout the duration of the 14-week Full Circle program. The time commitment is approximately 60 hours over the 14-week period including 3 Saturday sessions.
- Organizations, if selected, will be asked to submit their most recent annual report and/or year-end financial statements.
The 2022 program will include both in-person and virtual meetings and gatherings.
About SVP Pittsburgh
SVP cultivates effective philanthropists, strengthens nonprofits, and invests in collaborative solutions – building powerful relationships to tackle our communities’ social challenges.
About the Equity | Impact Center
The Equity | Impact Center addresses systemic inequity through broad social, cultural, and economic solutions and comprehensive, intentionally designed initiatives.
Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Spring 2021 cohort ended on June 24th with an incredible Final Pitch event and celebration! Each organization presented to SVP Partners, coaches, and Forbes Funds staff. The five organizations selected for the spring 2021 cohort represent a diverse group of nonprofit organizations and leaders directly addressing the needs of our community. We recognize how hard our nonprofit leaders are working to make an impact and hope that the Full Circle program provides some resources and tools to support their growth and sustainability. Thanks to sponsors Covalent and Straightforward Consulting, each organization was also awarded with a video highlighting the work of their organization. Please take a moment to watch the Spring 2021 Cohort Video to learn more about the work these organizations are doing and how you can support them.
The Spring 2021 Cohort Sponsors:
The Irick Group
SVP Pittsburgh Partners
and with generous support from The Forbes Funds and The Pittsburgh Foundation
Applications are now open for the Fall 2021 Cohort!
The Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator; a program of Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh and The Forbes Funds
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF THE FULL CIRCLE NONPROFIT ACCELERATOR?
Organizations selected for Full Circle will each receive the following:
• Program: An intensive, hands-on 14 week program (~15 hours/month) consisting of workshops, consulting sessions, and networking opportunities that help your organization meet its impact and financial goals.
• Coaching: Teams of SVP Partners serving as coaches alongside your organization throughout the Full Circle program.
• Network: Access to a growing support network of innovative nonprofits and socially conscious private sector professionals eager to share their skills and expertise.
• Funding: Selected organizations receive an unrestricted financial award as well as the opportunity to acquire additional funds and in-kind support at the final pitch event of the program.
The Full Circle program culminates with the final pitch event, which provides a platform for non-profit leaders to share their organization’s mission, impact, and organizational goals and needs to a broader audience.
• Organizations that apply must be designated as 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations operating in Allegheny County or have a Fiscal Sponsor
• Organizations that apply must designate at least two leadership staff who will participate consistently throughout the duration of the 14-week Full Circle program.
• Organizations, if selected, will be asked to submit their most recent annual report and/or year-end financial statements.
Applicants must also submit The Forbes Funds Nonprofit Needs Assessment as part of the application process.
Application closes on Wednesday, September 1st
Applicants will be notified by Friday, September 10th
**All programming will be virtual in 2021.
Friday, August 27th 10:00AM-10:45AM
About The Forbes Funds
The Forbes Funds focuses on building the management capacity and strengthening impact of community-based nonprofits individually and collectively. Our work supports capacity-building initiatives for human services and community development agencies by facilitating innovative partnerships, implementing learning cohorts, connecting local talent and initiatives to global frameworks like the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and the Bateson Institutes Warm Data Labs, and building coalitions through the Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership (GPNP). Learn More: www.ForbesFunds.org
About SVP Pittsburgh
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh is a community of engaged philanthropists who contribute their expertise, skills, networks, and finances to grow the impact of nonprofits and tackle our community’s greatest challenges. SVP Pittsburgh’s core program is the Full Circle impact accelerator, which connects SVP Partners as executive coaches to accelerate the impact of Pittsburgh’s most innovative nonprofits. Learn More: www.SVPPittsburgh.org
The five organizations selected represent a diverse group of nonprofits making an impact on, and meeting the needs of, our community. The selected nonprofits will engage in the intensive 14-week program that combines consulting, workshops, networking, and a pitch event. The program is designed to enhance each nonprofit’s programming impact, financial sustainability, and communication and storytelling. The nonprofit leaders in the cohort will work with teams of coaches with various areas of expertise skills, and experience to develop strategic solutions to their growth challenges. The Full Circle program culminates with the Final Pitch event which provides a platform for non-profit leaders to share their organization’s story and impact in the community.
Spring 2021 Cohort:
Awaken Pittsburgh promotes personal and community well-being through mindfulness programs and compassionate actions. Our vision is a Pittsburgh region where people are in touch with their inherent worth and can cultivate the confidence and dignity to create a more just and enlightened world.
The DIM mission provides currently and formerly incarcerated adults and at-risk youth with coordinated resources that will connect them to supportive services and job training opportunities focusing on realizing their maximum potential spiritually, physically, and economically.
Pittsburgh Learning Commons (PLC) is an educational nonprofit whose mission is to provide educational opportunities that break down disciplinary boundaries and relate to real-world contexts where learners can claim ownership over their education and build lifelong learning skills, and develop expertise in applied STEAM fields.
To ensure babies in need are clean, healthy and dry. We serve babies, families, senior citizens and girls and women. We are making a great impact in the community supplying basic needs.
When She Thrives is dedicated to empowering single mothers to move their families from poverty to prosperity through advocacy, education, and personal and professional development.
The Full Circle Accelerator program is facilitated by Leigh Solomon Pugliano of Straightforward Consulting. The 2021 Full Circle program is a collaboration between The Forbes Funds and Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh.
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh cultivates effective philanthropists, strengthens nonprofits, and invests in collaborative solutions – building powerful relationships to tackle our communities’ social challenges.
SVP Pittsburgh is an engaged community of corporate leaders using their skills, expertise, networks, and finances to support the growth of Pittsburgh area nonprofits. SVP Pittsburgh provides the opportunity for the corporate and nonprofit sectors to connect and work collectively to increase the impact of nonprofit organizations in our region. Our signature program (in partnership with The Forbes Funds), the Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator Program, is a proven capacity-building initiative that serves cohorts of nonprofit leaders in order to improve organizational management, program design, program implementation, financial sustainability, and increase overall impact. The 14-week program allows SVP’s Partners, mentors, and coaches to engage with nonprofit leaders to provide insight, expertise, and strategic solutions. Partners’ strengths and entrepreneurial mindsets enhance the curriculum by supporting nonprofit leaders with strategic and tactical consulting to better prepare them to solve immediate and ongoing challenges, as well as identify ways to improve outcomes and efficiency through partnerships, collaboration, and mergers. The program concludes with a Final Pitch Event. which provides a platform for nonprofit leaders to share their organization’s mission, impact, and organizational goals and needs with a broader audience.
The Full Circle curriculum and areas of focus include:
- Organizational Growth Strategy
- Financial Sustainability
- Communicating Impact
Join the Next Generation of Philanthropy
In order to realize our DEI commitments, SVP Pittsburgh has redesigned and are re-launching our Fellows program. We invite socially conscious private sector professionals and entrepreneurs, as well as those interested in civic engagement to join our network of engaged philanthropists (SVP Partners) through the SVP Full Circle Fellowship. Traditionally, SVP Partners contribute annually to the organization in addition to providing coaching and mentoring. SVP Full Circle Fellows are invited to join as SVP Partners with a scholarship award that covers the annual contribution. This program is designed to expand our Partner network by providing access to those who may not be able to make a financial contribution, but have skills and expertise that can support the nonprofit organizations we serve. A special thanks to our supporters to make this program possible: Pineapple Payments and The Irick Group, Merrill Private Wealth Management !
SVP Pittsburgh Inclusion Statement
SVP Pittsburgh will prioritize Diversity & Inclusion by being mindful and intentional about engaging, attracting, and welcoming diverse stakeholders. We will ensure this by conducting DEI training for our Board and Partners, incorporating appropriate and inclusive language into our materials, ensure our organization is accessible to all, and build a diverse board to lead the organization and help guide these initiatives. We will measure success by capturing feedback from Partners and nonprofit organizations as well as the community at large.
The Forbes Funds Equity Statement
The Forbes Funds focuses on building the management capacity and impact of community-based nonprofits individually and collectively. TFF incorporates a racial equity lens in our education and learning, grantmaking, advocacy, and capacity building work. Today, all services provided by TFF are aligned with the Social Determinates of Health and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) to show the impact in the ten-county region. This approach requires courageous conversations, community partnerships, and establishing shared goals to not only improve organizational capacity of nonprofits but to ensure that the populations served by nonprofits we support benefit as well.
About the Program
The SVP Full Circle Fellowship will launch in January of 2021. The year-long program will provide the opportunity for those interested in social responsibility and civic engagement to bring their knowledge, skills, and expertise to nonprofit organizations in the region. SVP Fellows will benefit from:
- Professional Development: opportunities for learning and skill-building throughout the program in areas of DEI, Coaching, and Facilitation.
- Increased Awareness: build knowledge and insight about the inequities that exist in our society and systemic injustices that impact our communities and work with nonprofit leaders to improve and enhance their solutions.
- Professional Network: connect with a growing community of civically engaged professionals from across industries who are eager to build friendships and partnerships with their SVP colleagues.
Fellowship Obligation and Expectations
- Serve as Full Circle coach for 1 year (2 cohorts)
- Attend Full Circle meetings, workshops, and gatherings
- Complete year-end evaluation of Fellows program for SVP
- Create a Full Circle Impact Report for their nonprofit organization at the end of the program
- Fellowship Application
- Applicant Review and Scoring by Selection Committee
- Finalist Interviews
- Applicant short bio. (150 words)
- Why is civic engagement important to you?
- Please share your civic engagement and community service experience. What areas of focus or communities have you served?
- What do you hope to learn or gain from this program?
- What community challenges or social injustices are you most passionate about addressing?
- What skills or areas of expertise can you bring to the nonprofit organizations in the Full Circle Program?
- What do you see as the biggest challenge facing our community today?
- Applicants will also be asked to submit a 1-minute video
Thursday, February 11th: SVP Fellows On-boarding
Thursday, February 25th: Full Circle Coaches Training
Thursday, April 8th: Program Kick-off- Relationship Building
Saturday, April 10th: Workshop #1 Organizational Growth Strategy
April 11th – April 23: Team Work Sessions (Nonprofit team and Full Circle Coaches)
Saturday, May 8th: Workshop #2 Financial Sustainability
May 10th – May 21st: Team Work Session (Nonprofit team and Full Circle Coaches)
May 24th – May 28th: NPO Check in with Program Manager
Saturday, June 5th: Workshop #3 Communicating Impact
Wednesday, June 16th: Workshop #4 Pitch & Presentation Development
Thursday, June 24th: Full Circle Spring Cohort Final Pitch Event
Many nonprofits supported by SVP Pittsburgh provide critical services for vulnerable people and communities, including food, education, and basic needs. To implement a rapid response to organizations in need because of COVID-19, SVP Pittsburgh is launching a new program on May 18, 2020 to support our nonprofit leaders. Through the Nonprofit Crisis Support Initiative, SVP Pittsburgh along with local corporations and other leadership and young professional organizations will provide strategic support to nonprofit leaders as they navigate through this crisis. The program will pair corporate and organizational leaders with nonprofit organizations seeking advice, strategy development, and access to resources in order to develop and execute a plan to sustain their organizations over the next several months and ensure long term viability.
Through our new technology-based matching system developed in partnership with CMU, nonprofit organizations will be paired with SVP Partners and corporate leaders based on the specific needs of their organization and the knowledge, skillset, and expertise of the mentor. We know the outcomes of these one-on-one sessions will be hugely impactful, helping nonprofit leaders to adapt their operations, align services with urgent community needs, establish sustainable practices and accelerate their growth as we move out of this crisis.
Education for Nonprofit Leaders
SVP is committed to supporting our nonprofit partners through all stages of this crisis – relief, recovery, and building resilience. In addition to mentoring, SVP Pittsburgh will host a series of webinars led by subject matters experts. Providing the tools, knowledge, and resources nonprofit leaders need to develop new strategies, implement new processes, and develop more robust and resilient organizations. The webinar education program will provide education in categories related to our priorities of Inclusion, Collaboration, and Impact. Potential webinar topics may cover Equity & Inclusion, Implementing Comprehensive HR Processes, Building Strong Partnerships, Intro to Change Management, and Impact Measurement.
For more information on the Nonprofit Crisis Support Initiative please contact Leigh Solomon Pugliano (email@example.com).
About SVP Pittsburgh
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh is an engaged community of corporate leaders using their skills, expertise, networks, and finances to support the growth of Pittsburgh area nonprofits. SVP Pittsburgh provides the opportunity for the corporate and nonprofit sectors to connect and work collectively to increase the impact of nonprofit organizations in our region. Our signature program, the Full Circle Nonprofit Accelerator Program is a proven capacity building initiative that serves cohorts of nonprofit leaders in order to improve organizational management, program design, program implementation, financial sustainability, and increase overall impact.
Above: The SVP Full Circle Spring 2019 Cohort and SVP Partners during a happy hour and networking event in May at the Millvale Food + Energy Hub.
While they embody different missions, the common thread amongst the SVP Full Circle Spring 2019 Cohort is a common one for those who work in not-for-profit organizations.
“With nonprofit work you think big and want to save the world on a zero dollar budget,” said Jackie Smith, executive director of Greater Valley Community Services. “And [the coaches] keep it in perspective.”
Social Venture Partners Full Circle is a 14-week accelerator program that combines consulting, workshops, seminars, networking and a final pitch event that will take place on Wednesday, June 26 at 5:30 p.m. at the Energy Innovation Center, 1435 Bedford Ave.
Meant for nonprofits that are at a critical juncture regarding their organizations future development, the program looks for applicants that are committed to achieving measurable outcomes and ready to expand and grow their impact.
The coaches that Smith referred to, also known as SVP Partners, are individuals engaged within the nonprofit community that are able to contribute their time and energy to furthering the advancement of the selected nonprofits chosen to participate in the program.
“The Full Circle Program is an incredible opportunity for nonprofit leaders and SVP Partners from the corporate sector to work collectively to improve internal operations and develop strategies for growth,” said Leigh Solomon Pugliano, Full Circle manager and director of opportunity at New Sun Rising. “It also provides greater insight to the corporate sector, the issues our communities are facing, and the incredible work our nonprofits do to make change.”
The program is held in the fall and spring, and accepts a total of five nonprofits each season. Recently, four out of the five organizations gathered for a happy hour event at the Millvale Food + Energy Hub to network and practice for the final pitch event on June 26. During the event, individuals shared their nonprofits history and the key areas they have been working on within the program. Those organizations included:
Based in Braddock, Greater Valley Community Services was created to strengthen and hold S.P.A.C.E (supportive programs affording collaborative engagement) for youth, adults, and seniors in the community. Executive Director Jackie Smith said that recently there has been a disconnect between residents and the businesses coming into the neighborhood, especially with youth, and when she read the description for the Full Circle program felt that the fit them perfectly.
“We’ve been stuck in a place and thought this might be the boost that we needed for the program that we wanted to work on,” Smith said.
Partnering with the Woodland Hills School District and entrepreneurs in the community, GVCS plans to create a program that will connect high school students to small business owners who will work together to create marketing plans, websites, and eventually apps for the neighborhood businesses. Smith said the SVP coaches have been instrumental in understanding the best ways to engage both students and businesses, and in deciding how classes will be structured for students in the program.
The Grounding Lab, a program under Unity Through Creativity, is situated in Hazelwood and uses arts infused techniques to assist people experiencing despair and enhance their emotional coping skills through contemplative process of deep self-reflection. With 40 years of nursing experience and research, Creative Director Margaret Baco said she has developed the understanding that true healing from traumatic experiences can come from engaging in expressive arts.
Baco said the SVP coaches have helped her focus on creating a community strategy, program development, strategic thinking, and networking. Specifically, she said she has appreciated the connections between those in the program.
“We are attracting one another during this dynamic process and New Sun Rising is able to see how networking through this cohort can strengthens our capacity to function,” Baco said. “It’s an outcome that I am deeply grateful for.”
In 2005, Erin Perry became a member of the dance ensemble at Legacy Arts Project, an organization focused on preserving the history and traditions of African arts as represented throughout the diaspora through education, instruction and interactions. In 2011, Perry became the executive director and has continued to expand the vision and grow the organization. She said Legacy Arts Project is “not only the exploration of African art, but also the exploration of self and well being.
Perry said joining the Full Circle program has provided guidance on fiscal sponsorships and marketing, and has also “rejuvenated” the nonprofits outlook around its programming and impact it has made in the Homewood community.
“If we were to have a personality assessment of our organization, [I’d say] we are humble,” Perry said. “At the same time we haven’t done a full service to the organization in promoting the work we do or have done, and the coaches have allowed us to recognize humility and pride in the power that has been going on and motivated us to tell the story.”
The Coraopolis Community Development Foundation was formed to serve its community by encouraging and assisting in renewal through community service and development projects, and Executive Director Amy Cavicchia said if she asks someone to volunteer, it’s because it’s something she’s also going to do herself.
Cavicchia has been easing in to her position at the nonprofit over the last two years and said her work with the Full Circle program has been focused on her elevator pitch and donor management.
“This program has really kept me focused and realizing what you can do and what you can’t do.” Cavicchia said. “Write it down, figure it out, do what you can and don’t worry about what you can’t do, because you can’t do it.”
Associated Artists Pittsburgh was unavailable during the event. Their mission is to enhance the region’s cultural vitality and promote visual arts excellence by showcasing artists’ work through contemporary exhibitions, providing community-based education programs, and facilitating a broad dialogue to engage artists with one another and the community.
October 8, 2018, Pittsburgh, PA – Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh has partnered with New Sun Rising to manage operations of their core program, the Full Circle Nonprofit Impact Accelerator. The program provides support for the region’s most innovative nonprofits through engaged philanthropy, where SVP Partners contribute their expertise, skills, networks, and finances to help tackle our community’s greatest challenges.
Starting with the Fall 2018 cohort, management of the SVP Full Circle program will officially transition to New Sun Rising. The two organizations have worked together to empower nonprofit sustainability and innovation since their first workshop together in 2015.
Leigh Solomon Pugliano, SVP Full Circle Program Manager and New Sun Rising’s Director of Opportunity, says, “I am very excited to manage the Full Circle program. New Sun Rising will provide an additional layer of support to SVP and the nonprofits they support. We hope to increase the awareness and accessibility of the program, as well as connect networks of communities and organizations that may otherwise be operating in silos. ”
Each Fall and Spring, a Full Circle cohort accelerates five nonprofits through an intensive 14-week program of workshops, seminars, networking, and pitch events. Participants are paired with teams of SVP Partners, who are private sector leaders serving as executive coaches and working directly with them throughout the program.
Cynthia Closkey, an SVP Partner and chair of the organization’s board, says, “SVP is working to help nonprofits in our region increase their effectiveness and capacity, so they in turn can help people in a range of ways in the community. Each SVP Partner has the chance to engage with the nonprofits they coach, and with all the nonprofits we work with. It’s a focused, intensive opportunity to make significant impact on the problems that matter most. I find it the most rewarding way possible to give back.”
The current Full Circle cohort kicked off on September 22nd during a workshop at Ascender and includes Neighborhood Legal Services Association, No Crayon Left Behind, Orenda Health, Providence Connections, and Ruth’s Way. The public is invited to learn more about the mission and impact of these organizations during a pitch event on December 12th. More details will be announced soon.
For more details on how to become an SVP Partner, upcoming opportunities to accelerate your nonprofit, or to financially support Full Circle, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Social Venture Partners Pittsburgh
Social Venture Partners (SVP) Pittsburgh is a community of engaged philanthropists who contribute their expertise, skills, networks and finances to grow the impact of nonprofits and tackle our community’s greatest challenges. SVP Pittsburgh’s core program is the Full Circle impact accelerator, which connects SVP Partners as executive coaches to accelerate the impact of Pittsburgh’s most innovative nonprofits. For more information, visit SVPPittsburgh.org.
About New Sun Rising
New Sun Rising (NSR) is an innovative 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to build vibrant communities through culture, sustainability and opportunity. NSR provides programs and services that create equitable opportunity, solve social challenges, and strengthen the vibrancy of place. Each year, over 150 individuals, organizations, and funders work with NSR to launch their nonprofit projects, social businesses, and economic development initiatives throughout the Greater Pittsburgh region. For more information, visit NewSunRising.org.
Leigh Solomon Pugliano, Full Circle Manager, email@example.com
Scott Wolovich, Executive Director, New Sun Rising, firstname.lastname@example.org