Welcome to the lab
The Innovations Lab (The Lab) is an Alliance journey through which a nonprofit with a proven record of success can expand or introduce a program that will make a significant impact on those they serve to further their mission and vision. The Innovations Lab consists of research, technical assistance, consulting, training, community engagement, peer-to-peer learning, and an opportunity to connect with a funder.
Follow the buoys below to learn more.
- Organizational Diagnostic Tools
- Preliminary Discussion w/Innovations Coordinator
- Innovations Coordinator Presentation to Organization’s Board
- Capacity-building training
- EIA Certification (including site visit)
- Organization completes a Board Resolution
- Alliance Research Specialist meets with participant
- Feedback on research results
- Assigned a Coach/Consultant (two hours of consulting)
- Workshops (storytelling, outcomes and concept notes)
- Includes 3 hours consulting
- Research and write a business plan
- Create enhanced concept note
- Community Presentation
- Pairing process
Click the links to the left to download the full FAQs.
The Lab journey occurs in a variety of spaces. Participants will meet in groups, individually, and one-on-one, both in person and virtually. They will conduct presentations to the community, and meet with Alliance staff and consultants. Each participant will be prepared for an in-person meeting with a potential funder. Participants are expected to complete specific steps and action items on their own time.
- Assist with conducting research
- Identify a potential funder
- Coordinate consulting
- Facilitate training
- Assist in planning your community presentation
- Coordinate video production
- It provides you the opportunity to connect with a nonprofit looking to serve their community in ways that already align with your existing community investment strategy.
- This will save you considerable time vetting funding opportunities and the health/wellbeing of a nonprofit. The nonprofit will have a record of success; receive their Excellence in Action Nonprofit Management Certificate; present research and market analysis to support their initiative; construct an enhanced concept note, business plan, and budget; and receive feedback from community stakeholders.
- You will have the opportunity to start your journey with a new partner through the lens of collaboration instead of being centered around an RFP cycle.
- Because of the work done by the nonprofit before and during the Lab, they have a significantly greater likelihood of organizational sustainability and in launching their initiative. This means that if you decide to fund their work, you will likely see a greater return on investment and an increased likelihood that the nonprofit will exist five years from now.