What would you choose:
1) investing FOR impact?
2) investing WITH impact?
The first option focuses primarily on positive social impact with a range of intention for or without financial return, while the second one has impact as a secondary objective, subject to the achievement of a financial return.
I do understand we in Lithuania still have a rare luxury to invest for social impact only. It is not because of the lack of HNWIs and their motivation to share their fortune for the “bigger good” but also because of the vast majority of social entrepreneurs still do their projects betting on grants only with formal or even non-existing [real] accountability. And we are trapped: donors rarely request that accountability, as trust dominates, grant receivers have no intention to make an extra mile showing and/or proving their impact achieved as their projects last for the grant period.
No-one should have no-one! I noted that slogan almost 5 years ago at The Silver Line in UK where we then were cordially accepted and showed around. Soon after similar service was born in Lithuania.
Today we mark yet another "no-one should have no-one" milestone extending our local Silver Line's - a social project we run since 2016 - working hours to 14 hours on working days (+2 hours, 8am-10pm) and starting weekends with 8 hours of reach (11am-7pm).
Due to a year-long pandemic and severe quarantine restrictions, the number of callers to the line has doubled seeking for emotional and informational support. More to add we have been receiving more and more calls during "after-hours". This has led us to move forward and extend call center working hours so that the necessary telephone support for older people is available as soon as possible.
Read more here (in Lithuanian):
Philanthropy is a buyers’ market, and nonprofit leaders are seldom in a position to negotiate aggressively with potential donors. On the contrary, the selection process is (and feels) quite one sided, as though potential grantees are participating in a beauty contest in which the only imperative is to please the judges. So, for better or worse, the views of an individual donor (especially a very large one) can strongly influence grantee behavior. Often this influence will take the form of tweaks to an existing program, or the addition of a new activity, more or less aligned with the nonprofit’s existing strategy, about which a leading donor is enthusiastic. When such an intervention is supported on the donor’s part by deep knowledge of the field, it can provide helpful input to the grantee’s strategy.
Friday has started with an email from the Ministry of Social Affairs:
We would like to inform you your project was reviewed by our experts, it met all requirements and we would like to offer you to sign financing agreement.
That means M. Čiuželio labdaros ir paramos fondas (M. Ciuzelis Charity Foundation) won the biggest in its 5 years history financing tender for Sidabrinė linija (the Silver Line) - a free of charge be-friending and support helpline providing information, friendship and advise for the old age people. Without any further conditions, the way we presented and wished to implement our project.
The day just couldn’t be any better. Thank you