COVID-19: SVP International Update

SVPI 03/12/2020

March | 2020

Dear SVP Partners and Colleagues,

I wanted to take a moment to write given the coronavirus outbreak here in the US and around the world. I live in Seattle where our major economic activities have come to a halt and leaders are working to figure out solutions in a time of significant crisis. I know many SVPs are adjusting their work to engage Partners and figuring out how best to support communities during this time. Those who are already vulnerable, small businesses, and working families will be hit especially hard during these times. We are all facing significant disruptions to planned activities and organizational budgets that will require problem solving together. 

For SVP International, our work has always been about connection, community, and relationships. We have done this through online and offline activities. We also know that the collective efforts of every sector – business, philanthropic, government, and nonprofit – to “Flatten the Curve” and care for our communities is critical right now.

Given the impact of coronavirus on our communities, what role should SVP affiliates, and the SVP Network play? How can all of us be nimble enough to respond to this unique moment?

There are no easy answers. However, I know that the first step is for us to connect across the network. SVP International Board Members and Staff will be reaching out with calls across the Network to hear about the impact this is having locally, gather ideas of how we can partner via the Network, and to get input on how we shift our plans for events that we hope to host in the coming months.

In the coming weeks we will all have to make tough decisions about our upcoming events, programs, and long-term goals, and also find opportunities that emerge as we examine this new landscape.

As we look ahead SVPI will seek to prioritize approaches that build and maintain robust connections for innovation, learning, and systems change. We will also have an opportunity to think broadly about the philanthropic sector response, and the long term role of philanthropy to help communities be more resilient in times of crisis or when faced with complex challenges. If you’re up for it, we want to hear your thoughts on that too.

I’m confident that together we will find a path forward and demonstrate in real time the critical importance of the relationships that SVPs cultivate. Now, more than ever, people need connection, partnership, hope, and community. Thank you all for your support and everything you do for SVP.


Sudha Nandagopal

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