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SVP Philadelphia’s Work in Context: Local and Global Impact

A year of engaged partnership here in Philadelphia and worldwide.

One of the best things about being an SVP affiliate is the level of connection and knowledge sharing that goes on across Social Venture Partners’ global network. The work we do at SVP Philadelphia is committed to and rooted in our city, but it’s also part of a larger, worldwide effort to reimagine giving.

SVP Partners and nonprofit Investees are doing incredible work near and far to mobilize resources and knowledge for the social sector—as close as Pittsburgh and Boston, and as far afield as Vancouver, Seoul, and Delhi.

Recently, SVP International’s CEO Sudha Nandagopal shared an excellent overview of our collective impact. This report highlights many ways SVP’s global network is challenging the status quo in philanthropy and creating a values-centered culture of giving. I’m particularly inspired by how many affiliates are striving toward more equitable practices to share resources and power with people and organizations that institutional philanthropy has historically left out. 

I encourage you to check out the report and learn how some of our peers spent the past year. At SVP Philadelphia, we come from diverse fields and backgrounds–and we’re united in our mission to reduce intergenerational poverty. Our Investees are making moves in education, job training, economic mobility, criminal justice reform, healthcare, and more. Our Partners are diving into that work, too, not only providing funding, but working with Investees directly through capacity-building efforts around operations, strategy, training, and leadership development. Brenda Shelton-Dunston, CEO of one of our first Investees, Philadelphia Black Women’s Health Alliance, puts it well when she says, "What we need from individuals with economic and social power, beyond monetary support, is participation in the collaborative and commitment to planning and implementing strategies within their space of influence.” 

In other words, the work that goes on at SVP is bidirectional: Investees benefit from unrestricted grants of general operating support and the time, talent, and ties of a growing partnership. Through those relationships, Partners take the knowledge, experiences, and practices of Investees back into their own workplaces and communities.

I’m immensely proud of what SVP Philadelphia has accomplished so far and am excited to do even more in the coming year, as we double down on our commitment to leverage the skills and experience of our Partner network and deepen our relationships with the nonprofits we support. Our work will continue to evolve to meet the urgent needs laid bare by the pandemic. We’ll continue to confront systemic inequality and racism and prioritize equity in our funding and engagement with Investees. We are part of a worldwide movement to make philanthropy more effective, engaged, and equitable–and we’re going to keep learning, giving, and doing together in 2023 and beyond. 

I invite you to join us. Reach out if you’re interested in lending your skills, knowledge, and resources to the partnership. If you’re a nonprofit in Philadelphia, tell us about the impact you’re making against intergenerational poverty–and what you want to do next.

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