US Administration Wants to Find Innovative Not for Profits
6 July 2009 at 4:05 pm
US White House officials are planning to travel across the country to find what President Obama describes as ‘the most promising Not for Profits in America’ with their cheque book at the ready to spend $US50-million in a new fund to help charities expand innovative social projects.
President Barack Obama, in his 2010 budget, will provide $50 million in seed capital for the Social Innovation Fund to identify the most promising, results-oriented Not for Profit programs and expand their reach throughout the country.
The Social Innovation Fund aims to identify what is working in communities across the country, provide growth capital for these programs, and improve the use of data and evaluation to raise the bar on what programs the government funds.
The Presidents wife, Michelle Obama has also expressed interest in the Fund saying that by focusing on high-impact, result-oriented non-profits, it will ensure that government dollars are spent in a way that is effective, accountable and worthy of the public trust.
Melody Barnes, Assistant to the President and Director of the Domestic Policy Council, told the Council on Foundations recently that the Social Innovation Fund reflects the President’s new governing philosophy: finding and investing in what works; and partnering with and supporting others who are leading change in their communities.
She says the US Government is also working with Federal agencies across the government to identify new solutions to problems that have resisted traditional approaches.
The Social Innovation Fund was authorized in the recent Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act. The Fund will focus on priority policy areas, including education, health care, and economic opportunity. It will partner with foundations, philanthropists, and corporations which will commit matching resources, funding, and technical assistance.