Strengthening the region's nonprofits
The pace of change in philanthropy has never been so rapid. Molded by our region’s dynamic demographics and the capital area’s specific social and economic uncertainties, needs, and resources, these large-scale shifts in philanthropic giving take a decidedly-local shape in our community.
In 2013, propelled by the findings from our Generosity Study which showed that only 62 percent of our region’s households gave charitably—lagging the national average by five points—we launched Big Day of Giving to empower area donors and nonprofits to address the rapid changes in philanthropy. Big Day of Giving continues to help area nonprofits build their capacities in marketing, board engagement, and donor development—and even as that program thrives, many of the capacity issues facing nonprofits in our region are more complex than a giving day can address.
That's why we are using data gleaned from Big Day of Giving and the website that powers it, GivingEdge—coupled with learnings from focus groups, convenings, and surveys—to inform additional efforts to strengthen the local nonprofit sector by building organizations' capacities, ensuring that we use our resources to equip nonprofit leaders with the skills, tools, and resources to fulfill their missions and respond to our community’s needs effectively.
One such effort is The Lab Capacity Building Program, which provides a hub for established and emerging nonprofit leaders from local nonprofits to innovate and problem-solve. The nine-month program’s curriculum is a rigorous undertaking for cohort participants. The pilot cohort is made up of executive directors and emerging leaders from 10 organizations serving the Sacramento region. Each month, participants attend full-day, in-person sessions to identify and address a specific challenge that has stymied their organization’s ability to increase its community impact.
The Lab is funded by the Foundation, a County of Sacramento Transient Occupancy Tax grant, and the Foundation’s RCA Community Fund. It is coordinated through a partnership between the Foundation and Third Plateau Social Impact Strategies.
To get involved in these efforts, we invite your nonprofit to join us in Big Day of Giving and, if you are interested in being informed when we open additional funding opportunities related to capacity building, please register to be alerted to those opportunities using our Grants Registry. You may also review some of our previously awarded grants related to nonprofit capacity building.
Throughout the year, the Foundation launches competitive grant opportunities to fund the worthy work of local nonprofits. For the most current information for each granting programs, view our Grants Calendar and sign up for the Grants Registry.