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Boardmeeting Discussion

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RESOURCES - Colorado Nonprofit Social Enterprise Exchange

Founded in the Winter of 2013 by Julie Voyles of JVoyles Nonprofit Consulting, Inc. and Caryn Capriccioso and Rick Zwetsch of interSector Partners, L3C, the Colorado Nonprofit Social Enterprise Exchange (The Exchange); a place where nonprofit innovators, creatives, social entrepreneurs and visionaries come to learn about, share, enhance, develop, finance, and launch sustainable revenue projects and businesses for their nonprofit organizations.

The Exchange supports nonprofits in building more sustainable, unrestricted sources of funding allowing for more flexibility in meeting their missions and supporting economic opportunity in low-income communities through the creation of businesses that train and employ clients. The experienced Exchange team believes that a comprehensive, in-depth approach to earned revenue development leads to greater success and longevity in delivery of these programs and ventures.

The Exchange is a comprehensive program that meets nonprofits where they are and works with them along the path to developing new revenue options and social enterprises in support of mission.

COHORT Graduated April 2014 Group Picture
COHORT 1: Graduated April 2014

Program Highlights:

Training & Capacity Building: Our Program

  • Conducted seven 101-level workshops in Denver, Pueblo, Loveland and Longmont; conducted one 201-level workshop; delivered one workshop; over 151 people attended these workshops

  • Provided customized workshops with groups focused on international development, social justice-focused nonprofits, urban Indian issues, women’s reproductive health and education to more than 80 participants

  • Completed the first year of three Social Enterprise Cohorts hosting graduations in April of 2014 September of 2015 and September of 2016; two cohort program is complete (including the second year of technical assistance and support), one programs is currently in their second year; 21 nonprofits graduated from our Social Enterprise Cohorts

  • Recruitment is underway for a fourth cohort anticipated to launch Winter 2018

  • Developed, utilized and annually update/refresh The Exchange Social Enterprise Cohort curriculum

  • Assisted twelve nonprofits in launch of their social ventures; eight businesses have passed their one year anniversary; several new ventures will launch Spring 2017

  • Program graduates have created over 40 jobs in the community

  • Program graduates have raised over $1.5M in start-up and initial operating capital; through targeted introductions, support in packaging plans and pitching ventures, and process coordination by The Exchange, graduates attracted additional and new sources and types of funding

  • Raised over $500,000 in foundation and sponsor support of programs of The Exchange since our official launch in the spring of 2013

Developing the Ecosystem: Our Vision

  • Engaged funders in The Exchange beyond funding support. They have served as panelists, mentors, pitch judges, topic-specific advisors, sounding boards, and helped to select cohort participants.

  • Helped create the ecosystems of support through broader Colorado initiatives such as serving on the steering committee for Colorado Impact Day and the 2015 Social Enterprise Alliance Summit

  • Presented on The Exchange and its graduates through panels and speaking engagements such as the 2015 inaugural SOCAPTV and Two Worlds Collide

  • Participating in The Denver Foundation’s learning and evaluation cohort to support its efforts to improve economic opportunity in the communities it serves

  • Conducted a study of Social Enterprise Financing in Colorado to better understand how nonprofits utilize philanthropic and traditional investment tools to launch and scale social ventures

COHORT 2 Graduated September Group Picture
COHORT 2: Graduated September 2015

  • Developed, launch and manage The Exchange Web site. 

  • Secured and manage a LinkedIn group, Facebook account and Twitter handle; defined the focus and purpose of each to support The Exchange

  • Developed internal processes for: cohort applications, cohort selection team selection process, business mentor recruitment and engagement, cohort schedules/due dates, field trips/tours

  • Supporting graduates and cohort participants through active marketing of their needs, businesses and successes through press releases and our social media presence

  • Created an infrastructure of support for our graduates, our team and the social enterprise community including – mentors, friends of The Exchange, funders, graduates, etc.

  • Created new relationships among nonprofit leaders



  • Completed three full Social Enterprise Cohort evaluations and two post-graduation evaluations. Impacts of Social Enterprise Cohort include positive impact on nonprofits beyond social enterprise (innovation, creativity, nimble approaches), increased understanding of various types of financing, shifting viewpoints on debt for working capital and growth, increased understanding of topics

Building Our Community: Making Connections

Understanding the Exchange: Our Evaluation

COHORT Graduated September 2016 Group Picture
COHORT 3: Graduated September 2016
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