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Draper Richards Fellowship for starting new NGOs


Cross posted from Peace and Collaborative Development Network
The Draper Richards Foundation provides selected social entrepreneurs with funding of $100,000 annually for three years. The funds are specifically and solely for entrepreneurs starting new non-profit organizations. The Draper Richards Fellowships are highly selective. We only award six fellowships per year so we can fully engage with our portfolio of grantee organizations.

The Draper Richards Foundation was founded in 2002. Funders William H. Draper, III and Robin Richards Donohoe, venture capitalists who have run highly successful funds together, believe in the power of innovation and passionate individuals to change the world.

We fund models with broad social impact.

We critique the ability of the organization to create significant social change. The idea must be sustainable and scalable. The founder must have the skills to manage a national or global organization.

The organizations we select will demonstrate innovative ways to solve existing social problems. The Foundation accepts proposals for a variety of public service areas, including, but not limited to, education, youth and families, the environment, arts, health, and community and economic development. We seek organizations that are or plan to be national or global in scope.

Draper Richards uses a rigorous selection process. We use a venture philanthropy process which requires completion of a business plan and our staff conducts rigorous due diligence including significant research, reference checks, calls to field experts and site visits.

Draper Richards is results driven. We build a contract with each Fellow based on business plan goals and use these targets in an ongoing evaluation process to drive organizational growth and programmatic success.

Draper Richards is a collaborative and engaged partner. We provide portfolio organizations with strategic guidance and coaching, often by taking an active role as a board member, with focus given to fundamentals that build strong and sustainable organizations including governance, fund development and data gathering for long-term evaluation.

Draper Richards is building a community of practice. We select and support the best social entrepreneurs and help them to learn from one another through gatherings, provision of resources and sharing of best practices.

Draper Richards Fellows are people who possess the unique combination of dedication to social change and the management skills of a seasoned executive. They have intense energy and passion for their social cause.

The best social entrepreneurs are:

Social entrepreneurs have an ability to bring creativity to the way they approach funding, collaboration, and program development. This creativity permeates their organization. Consistently, Draper Richards Fellows will offer transformative solutions and innovative approaches.

We are looking for those rare, determined leaders who thrive on challenges and skillfully adapt to a changing environment. Issues that others see as problems, Draper Richards Fellows see as opportunities to strengthen their organization.

The ability to work with people is important in any organization, but for a social entrepreneur, it is essential. Effective leaders invest in personal relationships and understand their value. Draper Richards Fellows will build bridges between constituencies.

Integrity and honesty are critical traits of a successful social entrepreneur. These are people who value their reputation for fairness. Draper Richards Fellows treat others with respect and consideration. They possess a deep sense of commitment and personal belief.

Experienced, dedicated social entrepreneurs with a developed idea for a non-profit organization based in the United States are invited to apply for the Draper Richards Fellowship.

We fund:
Organizations by providing unrestricted dollars.
Organizations at the beginning of their development. We provide the organization's first major investment. We do not fund organizations later in their lifecycle.
Organizations based in the United States only.
Organizations that are national or global in reach and social issue.

We do not fund:
Local community-based organizations
Think tanks
Conferences or one-time events
Organizations planning to influence policy through lobbying
Programs promoting religious doctrine

Some common reasons organizations are not considered eligible for funding:
Organization is no longer at the early stages of its development. We define early stage as between inception and having a 501c3 for 3 years or less. In addition, we seek to fund organizations with current annual budgets of less than, on average, $300,000.
Organization is local, rather than national or international, in scope. A local organization is one that focuses on a defined region or location and does not plan to expand its reach or service area.
Organization is a program of a larger organization, rather than a stand-alone entity.
Organization does not plan to be a 501c3.
Organization is not located in the United States.
Entrepreneur does not choose to make the organization a full-time commitment.
Idea is not unique or is a replication of a program that already exists.
Idea is unfocused. The organization is trying to solve too many problems or is using too many models and programs to achieve its goals.
Idea and/or implementation strategy lacks clarity. The plan is not comprehensive or is hard to understand.
Scaling plan is not viable. The revenue model or the operational model is not sustainable.
Idea will not create systemic social change. The solution presented does not address root causes or deliver enduring benefits.
No plan to measure outcomes.
Model does not have large-scale impact.
We do not accept re-applications.

We receive and review applications throughout the year and award grants throughout the year. Given the unique nature of our funding process, we have no deadlines for submitting materials.

Please submit a brief proposal of no more than 3 pages, plus an attached resume, as described below.

* The following information should be covered in one page of your proposal:
o The mission and objectives of the organization
o Your articulated theory for social change. Explain how your organization will improve on existing efforts and how your approach is systemic and unique. Be sure to describe existing programs and how yours will differ.

* The following information should be covered in two additional pages of your proposal:
o A description of the organization's program design and implementation plan for its first three years.
o An indication of the organization's tangible results to date, as well as an explanation of how you plan to measure organizational outcomes and success in the future.
o An explanation of how the organization will reach national or global scale.
o An explanation of the main sources of financial support that your organization will use to sustain your work over time.

* In addition, please attach a standard resume for the entrepreneur (not simply a text bio).

Once we have reviewed your proposal, we will invite qualified applicants to submit a more formal plan and begin an in-depth review process.

Please submit your proposal to:
Jenny Shilling Stein
Executive Director
Draper Richards Foundation
50 California Street, Suite 2925
San Francisco, CA 94111

Or via email as a Word document attachment to: proposals (at) draperrichards.org

Please put the name of your organization in the Subject line of the email.
We will send you an acknowledgement of receipt of your proposal within 14 business days.


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