SVP Cincinnati announces Phase 2 of nonprofit incubator

A collection of six regional nonprofits advanced to the second round of a specialty accelerator focused on helping participating organizations advance their missions through socially minded innovations.

The advancing participants in Social Venture Partners Cincinnati’s Project XLR8 initiative are Bluebird Bus of Hope, Corporation for Findlay Market, Opportunities Peoples Justice Leaders, School Board School, SuperSeeds and The Women’s Fund of Greater Cincinnati Foundation.

SVP will provide each member of the cohort with in-depth coaching and guidance to help them with specific projects. Projects in this class range from a mobile app to help those with food insecurity to a program focused on teaching life skills to people recently released from prison.

The full list is available below.

“Our partners are impressed by the social entrepreneurship energy here in the Cincinnati community,” said Chris Chen, SVP’s board chair.

Helping nonprofits enhance community impact

Social Venture Partners drives social innovation by accelerating new, bold and creative solutions to Greater Cincinnati’s most urgent challenges. Through its Project XLR8 initiative, SVP aims to help nonprofits enhance their community impact by supporting them through a mixture of grant funding and technical training.

This group came from a field of 11 organizations that participated in the first phase of Project XLR8 in 2023. ​​They all received $1,000 in seed funding.

SVP partners – a diverse group of business professionals who contribute financially and offer professional mentorship – worked closely with the nonprofits to brainstorm and refine their ideas. During the 12-week period, they discussed strategic planning, finance, marketing and fundraising. The most promising proposals advanced to the second round, known as the “Lift Phase.”

Cornerstone Renter Equity's Executive Director, Alisa Berry, presents during the Project XLR8 program.
Cornerstone Renter Equity’s Executive Director, Alisa Berry, presents during a previous Project XLR8 program.

Phase 2 goes from ideation to execution. The partners will share their expertise in specific areas to help the nonprofits turn their big ideas into realities. Participants will get an additional $2,500 as well.

At the end of 12 to 16 weeks, SVP partners will select one of the six concepts for a sustained investment of up to $20,000 annually for three years. They’ll also continue to receive strategic support from SVP.

Previous Project XLR8 winners include Refugee Connect and Cornerstone Renter Equity.

“We can see the momentum to address big challenges from this class of 11 incredible nonprofits, and we are so excited to focus collaboration with these six in our ‘Lift’ phase to accelerate their impact on our community,” Chen said.

2024 Project XLR8 Lift phase

  • Bluebird Bus of Hope: Launch a free café bus to connect people in rural areas with the resources they need.
  • Corporation for Findlay Market: Grow the Findlay Market Shopping app, which delivers healthy food to families with low incomes and provides technology to small businesses.
  • Opportunities Peoples Justice Leaders: Address Post Incarceration Syndrome by teaching life skills to formerly incarcerated people and their families.
  • School Board School: Bring diverse leadership to school boards and education advocacy through a seven-month learning program.
  • SuperSeeds: Disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline by bridging the relationship between youth and law enforcement to help youth understand law enforcement’s role in the community.
  • The Women’s Fund of Greater Cincinnati Foundation: Empower women to serve on local boards and commissions through their Appointed initiative.

SVP’s Project XLR8


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