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Frequently Asked Questions

What happens at bigBANG!?

Fast Pitch Competition + Audience Vote
Attendees vote on rapid-fire pitches from several innovative nonprofits.

bigBANG! 2020 was held as a part of Cleveland Leadership Center’s Accelerate 2020: Citizens Make Change on Thursday, February 27, 2020 at the Global Center for Health Innovation.

Why Social Innovation, and why now?

Social innovation is something new that brings improvement, and the benefit goes to society.

Social innovation embodies the concept that our toughest challenges cannot be solved with money alone or just by individual nonprofits. When we apply the ideas and tools of social innovation to the issues of our region, we can solve our biggest challenges and position our region as a leader in this work.

Where can I learn more about Social Innovation?

We provide further information and sources on social innovation here.

What is the bigBANG! Fast Pitch?

bigBANG! provides a venture capital-like “pitch stage” where innovative nonprofits take to the stage in front of a community of “impact investors” to share their stories, strategies, and growth plans.

How are nonprofits selected to be a Fast Pitch presenter?

Nonprofits apply in response to a call for applications. Organizations are selected to present at bigBANG! based on the innovative and effective ways they solve the social problems their mission addresses. They participate in two months of coaching from SVP volunteers to prepare their Fast Pitch. Learn more about here.

Who should attend?

– Anyone who wants to learn about and support innovation in Cleveland’s social sector

– Anyone who seeks to contribute skills, expertise, finances, and connections in ways that build stronger organizations

Are attendees expected to “invest” in any of the nonprofits?

No.  While attendees have that opportunity, there is no pressure to do so.  Often the competitive proposal process does not provide you with the insight of the leaders running those organizations and the in-depth understanding of what it will take for those organizations to take their mission to the next level.  The “pitch” experience provides “impact investors” with an opportunity to window shop without making a commitment that day.  Although, opportunities to strike a deal that day do happen!

How can I get involved?

There are many ways to show your support of bigBANG!

Sponsors: This event is not possible without financial assistance of generous supporters. Donations and grants are tax-deductible and support the program, event, and awards. A variety of sponsor levels is available, and we are open to discussing creative ways for organizations to partner with us, including in-kind contributions.

If you are interested in sponsoring this high-profile and high-impact event, please contact Hilary Sparks-Roberts at 216-231-2300 or click here for more information.

ParticipantsTo be considered for selection, nonprofits must apply. Join our mailing list for more details at the bottom right of our homepage.

Coaches: Coaches are essential to the training program. Coaches attend five sessions to give feedback to the nonprofits on their four-minute pitches and mentor one nonprofit leader to refine their pitch. A training session for Coaches to be effective in their volunteer role will be provided.  If you are interested in participating as a Coach in the future, please contact Hilary Sparks-Roberts.

Why is Social Venture Partners (SVP) involved?

SVP is the largest network of engaged donors in the world. We build powerful relationships among people and organizations committed to changing our world. With our collective power, we help individuals make a greater impact with their giving, we fund and strengthen nonprofits, and we equip our community to tackle our greatest social challenges.

SVP goes beyond philanthropy. Together, we unleash potential.

I have a question you haven’t answered or wish to become involved. How can I contact bigBANG!?

Through our contact page or the information below:

Social Venture Partners
8200 Sweet Valley Drive, Suite 100
Cleveland, OH 44125

Hilary Sparks-Roberts
Executive Director
tel (216) 231-2300

fax (216) 231-2331
e-mail: info@svpcle.org