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Apply for a Fellowship


SVP widens and strengthens our connection to our community by offering opportunities to high-energy, talented people who support the SVP mission, can gain significant personal experience from their involvement, but who can’t otherwise meet the annual financial contribution. Fellowships fit our mission to develop philanthropy, improve our work with Investees, and benefit our community.

Fellowships are one-year renewable relationships. Fellowship opportunities are public, with a competitive application and interview process on a rolling schedule. The number of Fellowships depends on sponsoring Partners. A Fellowship involves required participation, but not a financial commitment to SVP, however a small contribution is suggested. We see a Fellowship as a stepping-stone to potential Partnership.

Fellows participate in as many SVP activities as they wish. They agree to a minimum five hours a month including some required activities and a variety of optional activities depending on interests. Greeters from the SVP partnership welcome Fellows and check in with them throughout the year.


Fellows are actively involved in SVP and may participate in as many SVP activities as they wish. Certain participation is required of Fellows as indicated below.

Required for Fellows

The Investment Team

Our Investment Team (aka the I-Team) is essential to all that we do. In order to pick a new nonprofit each year to support and strengthen, our Partners rely on the scrupulous vetting the I-Team conducts. They are our eyes and ears and heart. Read More »

The Advisory Teams

The Advisory Team (aka the A-Team) offers a flexible opportunity for you to learn about our current Investees in ways that accommodate your busy lives and schedules, and at the same time satisfy your curiosity about what, and how, our Investees are doing. In addition to the updates, you will often have opportunities to brainstorm about unique challenges facing our Investees. You will never be assigned "homework" after the A-Team session. It's like auditing a class without any accompanying test or essay! Read More »

The Volunteer Team

The Volunteer Team (aka the V-Team) is a fluctuating group of Partners who volunteer to help our Investees strengthen their capacity in myriad ways. V-Team members have been called upon to lend their insights and experience to projects involving board governance, volunteer management, community outreach, outcomes measurement, leadership development, strategic planning, marketing, financial management, information technology, and compensation review (among many more examples). Thanks to the V-Team, SVP typically provides over 200 hours of volunteer consulting to our Investees on an annual basis. Read More »

The Education Team

The Education Team (aka the E-Team) pools the vast experiences, connections, and resources of our team members to meet the educational needs of our Partners and our community. Known for our commitment to social innovation, SVP's education events often look at old issues through a new lens. Read More »

Participate in Workshops and Meetings (4 per year required for Fellows)

SVP offers workshops on a variety of topics integrated into all of our meetings and activities: community issues, grantmaking, strategic giving, volunteering, financial planning and giving, values and motivations in philanthropy, nonprofit sector, and honing capacity-building skills. Read More »

Attend the SVP International Conference if possible

Meet and learn from Partners and from SVP’s world-wide affiliates and nationally acclaimed speakers at the annual conference. Conference costs are not covered by SVP. Read More »

*Participation in the V-Team depends on what skills are needed.

Other Opportunities to Engage

Lead Partners

Alternately quarterbacks and counsellors, Lead Partners spearhead SVP's engagements with our Investees. The Lead Partner serves as a sounding board for the Investee's executive director as they determine how SVP can best help strengthen their capacity. Lead Partners often develop trusting, intensely personal relationships with these Investees. Along the way, Lead Partners are never alone. Read More »

Fast Pitch Coaches

Over the course of approximately two months, the Fast Pitch Coaches help each of the bigBANG! presenters hone their four-minute Fast Pitches so that they deliver polished, high-energy presentations at bigBANG! These coaches help the presenters tell concise yet compelling stories, stories that will inform and electrify the bigBANG! audience. Read More »

bigBANG! Planning Team

The bigBANG! Planning Team ensures that SVP's showcase on social innovation goes without a hitch. In years past, bigBANG! has convened speakers like Peter Senge and Dan Pallotta who've spoken to crowds of approximately 250 folks from across Greater Cleveland and beyond. Sharing the stage and inspiring the audience are the Fast Pitch presenters -- executive directors from local nonprofits who share their innovative approaches to challenging social problems. Read More »

Board of Directors

SVP's board oversees the financial and strategic operations of SVP Cleveland. The board is composed of between five and seven members who serve two-year terms; occasionally board members are asked to serve three such terms. Partners may nominate themselves or another for the role. The only prerequisites are energy, enthusiasm, and a desire to move SVP forward. Read More »

Ad Hoc Committees

Throughout the year, many opportunities arise on an ad hoc basis. Depending on their availability and interest, Partners can volunteer on these committees at will. In the past, some of these committees have been devoted to maintaining connections to SVP alumni, engaging in strategic planning, welcoming Partners at the New Partner Orientations, and the like. Time commitments range considerably depending on the committee's focus. Read More »

Please apply by filling out the form below.

If you have questions please contact SVP here.

SVP Fellows Application

Basic Information




Please answer the following 6 questions:

1. Why do you want to be a part of SVP? What do you hope to learn?*

2. What will you bring to SVP? What will other Partners learn from you?*

3. In what ways could you add value to a volunteer team supporting the capacity of a local nonprofit?* (For example, expertise in volunteer management, marketing, accounting, strategic planning, community organizing, etc.)

4. What volunteer, community and civic engagement experience have you had? What have you learned from it?*

5. What are your core values and the values of those groups of which you are a part?*

6. Are you able to commit at least five hours per month during your Fellowship?*

Application Criteria

Please check each box to indicate your qualification for SVP's Fellowship Program:

I would not otherwise have the financial means to make the annual contribution ($1,200 is the minimum contribution).

I am at least 21 years of age.

Reference # 1




Email Address*

Phone Number

Relationship to you*

Reference # 2




Email Address*

Phone Number

Relationship to you*

Final Steps

Do you have anything else to add?