Cascade Alliance

One Good Thing – Communities Thrive Challenge

This week for One Good Thing, we would like to take the opportunity to highlight our organization’s recent success in becoming semi-finalists in the Communities Thrive Challenge, a grant opportunity presented by the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation.  Semi-finalists consisted of  63 organizations across the country.

A little background on what the Communities Thrive Challenge is about:

“At The Rockefeller Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, we believe in an America where all people can earn enough to support their families, achieve financial security, and provide their children with more opportunities. Every day, local governments, businesses, and nonprofit leaders across the country are working to make this dream possible in their communities.

That’s why The Rockefeller Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative – with guidance from community leaders across the country – have created the Communities Thrive Challenge, a $10-million funding opportunity open to organizations that are working to expand economic opportunity for low-income and financially insecure people and communities in the United States.”

We were thrilled to be invited into the second round, and while we were only able to make it to the semi-finals, we aren’t discouraged.  We received good feedback from a panel of judges which will be useful as we continue to grow.  Through this challenge, we were able to exemplify our business model and how we meet a variety of needs in various communities as well as improving environmental and economic problems.

This opportunity also gave us a chance to highlight the work our organization does and share those insights with other business leaders around the US.  This certainly is one good thing and we are thankful to share it with our partner organizations!

Much of the feedback was positive and gave us ideas on how to scale the organization if we wanted to expand. We’ve included some of our favorite comments below:

“Strong potential to scale, given the revenue-generating capacity of the program, which would likely create demand from non-profits for the consulting services on how to adopt the same techniques. There are also increasing returns to scale, as a greater footprint will make the services more attractive to customers (who are looking for wider geographic reach) and more efficient to manage.”

“Organization’s leadership demonstrates an outstanding commitment to the mission and a deep understanding of the populations it serves. They have already achieved impressive scale and were notably candid about learning from past failures — indicating a strong and open leadership culture.”

Check out some of the other organizations that applied—it’s so encouraging seeing such good work done all over!