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Social Venture Partners: Philanthropy in San Diego from SVP San Diego on Vimeo.

Our Mission

“Empower individuals and organizations to accelerate positive social change in San Diego.”

We are a group of San Diegans, with a passionate desire to improve our community. As a result of being a Partner, San Diegan community members find themselves better connected to their community, important causes, and other amazing like-minded individuals.  We help our Partners find purpose and enjoy giving back. We believe philanthropy always works in both directions: philanthropists and nonprofits will both learn and grow through their work toward a common goal.

How Do We Do This? We Do More Than Writing A Check
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 donating an annual contribution that is personally significant – in line with their passion for SVP’s mission and their means. We estimate the value of Partnership at $7200, and the average SVP Partner donation this year is $6520.  However, we believe that each individual has their own level that they feel is personally significant and we are thankful for all donations.

These funds, along with professional expertise and vast networks, are leveraged to give our annual grants. 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 by the entire Partnership. The award includes both unrestricted cash grants and skilled volunteer expertise. These investments are multi-year relationships focused on building capacity to achieve a next-stage vision for the organization and a scalable, lasting positive impact for the community.

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.  Teams of Partners work shoulder to shoulder with the nonprofits to improve the way their businesses operate.  We find this to be a meaningful and fun way to volunteer.  There are generally five to seven Investees working with SDSVP in any given year, and funding relationships last one to three years.

Engaged Learning
We value continual learning and strive to better the skills, knowledge and connectedness of our Partners by providing a variety of educational opportunities. Partners attend education sessions regarding different social issues in San Diego, specific skills needed to work with nonprofits, and ways to deepen their own philanthropic practice. Perhaps most meaningfully, we integrate shared learning into our ethos and learn from each other, our mistakes and our nonprofit partners.