A Better Chicago (www.abetterchicago.org) is a nonprofit venture philanthropy fund for the Chicago metropolitan area. The organization provides funding and management support to a portfolio of high-performing nonprofit organizations that are dramatically advancing educational and career opportunities for low-income Chicagoans. Key elements of A Better Chicago's model include:
Rigorous due diligence: A Better Chicago only funds the most effective and innovative nonprofits in the Chicago region. Further, A Better Chicago continually tracks its grantees' performance to help them improve and holds them accountable to delivering results.
Add value: It takes more than just money. A Better Chicago helps its grantees tackle their biggest strategic and operational challenges providing a variety of management support services, such as business planning, program strategy, board development and executive search.
100% impact: A Better Chicago's board of directors and leadership council cover all operating expenses, so 100% of public donations are invested in high-performing organizations.
Engagement: A Better Chicago provides its donors with a clear understanding of how their funds are being used, and what impact they are having. Further, A Better Chicago provides donors with opportunities to get personally engaged beyond just a financial investment, such as volunteering or joining the board of a grantee.
Since launching in 2010, A Better Chicago has:
Raised a total of $10 million to invest in our city's most effective nonprofits
Expanded our portfolio to 11 high-performing nonprofit organizations that have impacted 14,000 low-income Chicagoans
Developed a network of strong corporate partners and foundation colleagues
Built a strong board, leadership council and staff
Launched Project Impact, a social innovation competition for early stage nonprofit organizations