The Charity Entrepreneurship (CE) Incubation Program has historically been run in person, which made it challenging to share information with a broader audience. However, this year, in part due to Covid-19, we will run the program online. The program will be split into two online training courses focused on the two broad elements required for successful charity founding:
Course 1 - How to make decisions
Why this matters: The difference between the best and worst charities in a field can be hundreds of times of impact. Most of these differences come from the numerous decisions made along the way: large ones, like what charity to found; and small ones, like what do with that negative study that was just published.
Content: Every charity makes a huge number of decisions, from large-scale multi-year plans to small updates based on ongoing measurement and evaluation. The “How to make decisions” course will go through key choices such as idea selection, country selection, and personal fit for charity entrepreneurship. It also covers tools for making better decisions, such as task planning, cost-effectiveness analysis, and problem-solving techniques.
Structure: Each day will involve some reading (~15 minutes), some video content (~60 minutes), a ~30 minute Q and A, and multiple-choice quizzes. For a deeper dive, there will also be additional content that is not required reading for the course.
Availability: This course focuses on the main reason many charities fail to have an impact. As making better decisions is helpful to almost all charity founders (as well as for a wide range of other roles), we have worked to make this program publicly available as an audit program. It will be open over the summer. Subsequently, we will evaluate if it should stay up long term.
Sign up to our newsletter to be informed when the audit program starts at the end of June.
Course 2 - How to gather support
Why this matters: After key decisions have been made, the next challenge a charity faces is gathering support for the cause. Even a highly productive and fantastic decision-maker will make limited progress if they are the only member of their team, or if a lack of funding stops them from executing their intervention.
Content: Every charity needs three key pillars of support:
This course, a certificate program, will cover all three. You’ll learn how to build your organizational wisdom through tools like talking to experts and assembling an advisory board. The ins and outs of work, including hiring, management, and picking the right co-founder. And finally you’ll learn fundraising, financial management, and written outreach, so you can gather the wealth required to execute your intervention.
Structure: Like the decision-making program, each day will involve some reading (~15 minutes), some video content (~60 minutes), a ~30 minute Q and A, and multiple-choice quizzes. In addition, there will also be a daily Zoom call with a mentor or another member of the program and a daily multi-hour activity to work on with potential co-founders. The activities aim at a) getting to know your potential co-founder and b) preparing key outputs for a charity (e.g. fundraising proposal, Monitoring & Evaluation plan). See more information on the topics and activities in this blog post. For a deeper dive, there will also be additional content that is not required reading for the course.
Availability: This is an area nearly every charity wants to improve in but it’s also an area that is more zero-sum in nature. Sadly the talent, advisor, and funding pools are limited, as is our capacity to run activities and conduct Zoom calls. Thus, we are only able to share this course with the people who were accepted to the full CE Incubation Program via our application process. Our program participants, a group of about 20 people, will go through both courses outlined above (i.e. the audit and the certificate program).
First 5 weeks: The first five weeks are divided into the two online programs as described above. Dates run from 06/29/2020 to 07/31/2020. Doing the content in order and in time with the dates is optional but has significant advantages. The Q and As will only be available to answer questions submitted before they are public (which will often be the day after the program content is put up). And any activities or forum posts will be more impactful if done with a co-founder or at the same time as others. It’s also possible that this course will not stay up indefinitely: this will be reconsidered after the program has run through the summer.
Next 4 weeks: There are 4 more weeks of focused activities for people who have been accepted into the certificate program. These activities will be less educational and more geared toward building the components necessary for an organization to launch.