In addition to supporting our work through multi-year financial contributions, many of our investors also seek to engage directly with the social entrepreneurs in our portfolio, their programs, and the individuals they serve. Below are some of the ways in which our investors choose to become involved:
Meeting Social Entrepreneurs from the Portfolio
To provide our investors with the opportunity to meet some of the social entrepreneurs they are supporting through their philanthropy, New Profit periodically invites members of the investor community to join a roundtable discussion. These discussions enable investors to hear from portfolio social entrepreneurs about their program, plans for growth, and partnership with New Profit. These convenings also allow our investors to make a personal connection with the leaders of our portfolio organizations, as well as expand their familiarity with the evolving and complex field of social entrepreneurship.
Some investors also attend the Gathering of Leaders, New Profit's annual conference on social entrepreneurship, which brings together leaders from the nonprofit sector, business, academia, philanthropy, and government to identify the barriers to social entrepreneurship and develop approaches to breaking them down.
Identifying High-Impact Organizations for Investment
By participating in our Investment Referral Network, investors may recommend organizations to be reviewed for investment, and have the opportunity to work with the portfolio management team to review letters of inquiry and identify strong candidates for the portfolio.
Engaging in the Governance of a Portfolio Organization
Some of our investors, who have the interest in taking on a significant commitment of time, assume a seat on the board of one of our portfolio organizations. By engaging in the governance of a high-growth nonprofit organization, our investors lend their expertise to the strategic issues the organization faces as it grows.
Volunteering with a Portfolio Organization
Many of our portfolio organizations incorporate volunteers into their program models. For example, Year Up matches each student in its program with a professional mentor, while Citizen Schools connects adult volunteers to young people in hands-on learning projects after school. Investors who wish to work directly with the individuals being served by the portfolio can choose to volunteer with an organization and help change the lives of individuals, children, and families through service.
Co-Investing in Portfolio Organizations
For some of our larger investors who express a desire to directly fund a specific portfolio organization above and beyond their commitment to New Profit, we have on occasion coordinated our financial support to advance the strategic goals of the organizations being funded.
Make a career of humanity...and you will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.