The Lever Fund finds, funds, and partners with high-performing nonprofits that prepare low-income students and workers for 21st-century employment.
Since 2016, the Lever Fund has made four investments in high-performance, high-impact DMV nonprofits—in Northern Virginia, the District, and Maryland—for a total of $145,000:
- Northern Virginia:
- Genesys Works National Capital Region (link is external), $30,000. See Lever Fund analysis here. See our Impact Report here. Based on these outstanding results, the board approved an edditional $20,000 investment in the fall of 2017.
- District of Columbia:
- Washington Parks & People Green Corps Program (link is external), $25,000; see Lever Fund analysis here. Watch the trailer for City of Trees (link is external), the award-winning film about Washington Parks & People.
- BUILD (link is external)'s program at Friendship Tech, $20,000; see Lever Fund analysis here. And watch a video (link is external) produced by the NCTA Foundation. Based on these outstanding results, the board approved an edditional $20,000 investment in the spring of 2018.
- Family Services, Inc., Keys to Success Program (link is external), $25,000; see Lever Fund analysis here. See our Impact Report here.
In selecting our first nonprofit investees—as we do with all of our investees—we focused on:
- Financial sustainability
Under our methodology, we gauge the effectiveness of our investees in terms of benefit-cost ratios that capture the dollar value of specific, measurable outcomes made possible by our investments.
For example, a 19:1 benefit-cost ratio—as in the case of Washington Parks & People’s Green Corps Program—indicates that for every dollar invested, 19 dollars of value are generated to the benefit of program participants (typically captured in a projected earnings boost over a 10-year period).