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All Blog Posts (23)

2014 Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen SV2 Social Impact Award Recipients announced

We are thrilled to announce the 2014 recipients of the Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen SV2 Social Impact Award. In honor of SV2's 15th anniversary, this year the award is being given to 9 pillars of SV2's early days. These pioneers provided the seed capital to launch and sustain SV2:…

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Added by SV2 on March 31, 2014 at 12:04pm — No Comments

Working with the Entire Family to Reduce Childhood Obesity

First-year Grantee Packard Pediatric Weight Control Program (PPWCP) works to combat childhood obesity. Program Director Cindy Zedeck, MA discusses the program with SV2 Grantmaking and Special Projects Officer Elizabeth Dodson. 



Q: I understand that the New Year is a busy time of year for the PPWCP. Can you fill us in on that a…

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Added by SV2 on February 4, 2014 at 5:29pm — No Comments

Catching up with Emily Arnold-Fernandez of Asylum Access

I recently had a chance to catch up with the founder and Executive Director of Asylum Access, Emily Arnold-Fernandez, and learn more about what drives and inspires this award-winning powerhouse: 



Q: Tell us about some of Asylum Access' most exciting…
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Added by SV2 on October 31, 2013 at 2:30pm — No Comments

Imagine SV2's Best Future!

During this 15th anniversary year at SV2 we’re stepping back to take stock of our work together. Having just launched strategic planning, the SV2 Board of Directors is hard at work exploring how we might deepen and grow SV2’s impact on Partners, Grantees, and the broader community in the years ahead. In the spirit of our Partner-driven model, an “Idea Wall” awaits Partners and others in our Los Altos SV2 meeting space as a place to capture ideas about how we can continue to increase our impact… Continue

Added by Jennifer Ratay on October 11, 2013 at 12:41pm — No Comments

Successes at Peninsula Bridge

In a recent interview with Deirdre Marlowe, Executive Director of Peninsula Bridge, she shared with me what it takes to be an ideal Bridge teacher, how Peninsula Bridge is scaling and what their plans are for this summer. …

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Added by Lisa Downey on June 12, 2013 at 11:00am — No Comments

Giving Trends in Silicon Valley

SV2 Partner Alexa Culwell recently wrote this interesting blog post in the Stanford Social Innovation Review: Local Resources for Local…

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Added by Holly Goodliffe on May 17, 2013 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Innovation at Pie Ranch

I recently interviewed Jered Lawson, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Pie Ranch about some of the innovative projects he's working on right now.

Q: Tell us about some of the more unusual visitors you’ve had recently at Pie Ranch.

A: We are developing a great relationship with Google,…

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Added by Lisa Downey on March 26, 2013 at 5:30pm — No Comments

Due Diligence: 3 Secrets for Success

There are so many great organizations working on so many praiseworthy and necessary causes -- I wish SV2 could fund all of them. However, we have limited resources, and as Partners, we want to make sure those resources are used efficiently and effectively. A good due diligence process is key to reaching these goals.



This process is particularly difficult in SV2's International Grantmaking Group, where we do not restrict funding based on the nonprofit's issue area or…

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Added by Clara Roa on March 5, 2013 at 10:30pm — No Comments

Q&A with Medic Mobile

I had the pleasure of speaking with Josh Nesbit, Executive Director of SV2 Grantee Medic Mobile:

Q: What have been the recent highlights for Medic Mobile?

A: The last few days have been very exciting. President Clinton announced our projects in Liberia and Kenya during the…

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Added by Lisa Downey on December 18, 2012 at 4:34pm — No Comments

Why fund Environmental Education?

I hate to admit it, but there was a time in my life when I threw plastic bottles away in the garbage.  While there probably was no recycling bin available, I’m sure the main reason I did it was because I didn't know any better. But, once I knew better, I did better. Now, I minimize buying anything in plastic and recycle every part I can.

Education—the process of acquiring knowledge—is the first step to establishing good habits. Whether the information comes from a teacher at school or…

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Added by Virginia Boyd on December 6, 2012 at 10:58pm — No Comments

Collective Action: Building a Robust Civic Infrastructure

Jeff Edmonson, CEO of Strive, defines some key differences between the standard definition of collaboration between people and entities and the new model of collective impact. He posits that discipline is the primary differentiator.  One example of discipline is using data to continuously narrow the focus and  target investments/resources/people on areas where data shows specific actions to be really working.…

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Added by Kelly Pope on November 25, 2012 at 2:00pm — No Comments

SV2's Newest Startup: Health

This year SV2 has added Health as a new focus area. This is a topic with outstanding potential for impact, but what really draws me in is the “startup” mode of this grant round. There’s no momentum from previous grant rounds, no history of research, and no potential Grantees that just missed out during the last round. We're very much at the fuzzy front end of the brain-storming process. We have a clean canvas to work with, and the creative process can go in any direction at this point.…

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Added by Michael White on November 20, 2012 at 8:30am — No Comments

While in its Infancy, Experts See a Bright Future for Blended Learning

WOW! What a great group of knowledgeable experts in the Blended Learning (BL) panel on Tuesday! We are at the beginning of this BL wave (and our experts agreed that blended learning IS NOT a fad). Gisele Huff (of Innosight Institute) likened the infancy of BL today as analogous to the early days of the Sony transistor radio. Boy, have we moved lightyears from that! (radio+phone+GPS+wallet+movie/music player+HD…

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Added by Kelly Pope on November 9, 2012 at 4:30pm — No Comments

Q&A with Beyond 12

I had the pleasure of interviewing a current SV2 Grantee - Alex Bernadotte, Executive Director of Beyond 12:

Q: What motivates you to do Beyond 12's work of helping first-generation college students succeed in college?

A: Only 9% of students from low-income families complete a…

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Added by Lisa Downey on November 6, 2012 at 5:00pm — No Comments

The Five-Minute Nonprofit MBA

SV2 Partner Curtis Chang recently wrote this interesting blog post in the Stanford Social Innovation Review to help Nonprofit Executive Directors gain the management skills they need: The Five-Minute Nonprofit…

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Added by Holly Goodliffe on October 31, 2012 at 5:30pm — No Comments

No Excuses- Thoughts on Blended Learning

Recently SV2 Partners had the opportunity to observe blended learning in action at two charter schools in San Jose CA.  The latest trend in using technology in schools, blended learning combines online lessons with traditional teacher instruction.  Advocates of this approach use computers to individualize instruction so that each student can master content and skills at his or her own pace.

As our tours demonstrated, there is no one way to integrate blended learning in a school.  At…

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Added by Alison Elliott on October 25, 2012 at 11:37pm — No Comments

How nonprofits are helping in East Palo Alto

A few days ago I had the opportunity, along with several other SV2 Partners, to meet with three amazing Executive Directors at the Boys and Girls Clubhouse in East Palo Alto. They included the Boys and Girls Club, East Palo Alto Tennis and Tutoring, and Citizens Schools. I was impressed to see all the programs the Boys and Girls Club offers - tutoring, computer instruction, a "college track" program for high schoolers, field trips to hear interesting, engaging speakers, and even a "music…

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Added by Barb Jones on October 16, 2012 at 3:35pm — No Comments

Q&A with the National Foster Youth Action Network

I had the pleasure of interviewing a past SV2 Grantee - Janet Knipe, Executive Director of National Foster Youth Action Network: 

Q: What impact has SV2 had on the National Youth Foster Action Network?

A: The Action Network was only an idea in my…

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Added by Lisa Downey on October 10, 2012 at 2:04pm — No Comments

Reflections on the Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen SV2 Social Impact Award

I was so honored to receive this year's Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen SV2 Social Impact Award at the Annual Meeting. I've been involved with SV2 since it was founded in 1998, and the SV2 partnership has been a priceless community for me and my family. In addition, the structure of SV2 has impacted my philanthropy in two key ways.

First, participating in the grant rounds has profoundly changed my outlook on group philanthropy. I was heavily involved with the Education grant round in 2009…

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Added by Laura Heller Lauder on September 27, 2012 at 7:00pm — No Comments

SV2's two-part mission

The Annual Meeting inspired me to reflect on the two components of SV2’s mission:
1. Investing in and engaging with high potential nonprofits as our Grantees.
The significance of the “Grantee” part of our mission was front-and-center at the Annual Meeting with four phenomenal Grantee speakers. Each of our Grantees articulates a compelling solution to a challenging problem. They instill a sense of urgency that moves others to action, which is critical in today’s…
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Added by Nancy Heinen on September 26, 2012 at 5:30pm — No Comments

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