Putting our SVP Seattle values to work during times of crisis

Posted by Zach Grossnickle — March 12, 2020

Social Venture Partners Seattle continues to monitor the evolving COVID-19 outbreak in the Greater Seattle area. Our leadership, staff and Board are regularly updating our program and operations strategies in order to incorporate any new guidance from local, state and federal public health authorities.  These decisions are informed by your feedback and perspective – thank you for all coming together in this time as an SVP community!

As an update, SVP is already implementing changes to programming and in-person events such as Fast Pitch, Grant committees, and partner recruitment events.  In many instances, we are adjusting events to virtual models before postponing or canceling as necessary.  We are also experimenting with digital strategies to support our Investees and engage with Partners.  You will see specific communications on these programs from us as final decisions are made. Staff are currently working remotely, reachable by their SVP emails and phone numbers.

As we make our decisions, we continually revisit our SVP values as an anchor point for our plans.  During times of crisis it is important to ground in values regularly, and we are proud to continue living our values through this time. See SVP’s website for additional detail on how we can interpret and lean in to these values, which are:

CONNECT | We cultivate relationships and recognize we can accomplish more together.

TRUSTED ALLY | We model humility, openness and mutual respect.

EQUITY | We center our efforts on those historically marginalized to balance power and access to resources.

STRETCH | We embrace challenging conversations and risk taking and seek opportunities to learn.

IMPACT | We pursue sustained and transformative change.

How SVP Seattle can respond

In the past two weeks, local nonprofit organizations have been having tough conversations about the impact of COVID-19.  In an already complex year (Presidential election! Uncertain economy!) the necessary shared public health actions we have had to undertake as a community have put many organizations in precarious operational and financial positions. Many have had to cancel and postpone events that bring in vital funding needed to run and sustain their organizations for the remainder of the year.  We at SVP Seattle understand this challenge firsthand as we have had to quickly change plans for the Fast Pitch Final Showdown and think about how else this may affect programming.  The impact of these changes reaches beyond SVP and hits the communities that our Investees and innovators work hard to serve every day.  Our organizations are scrambling, figuring out how to maintain services in an increasingly volatile situation.

Times of challenge bring about opportunity – and we are now asking the SVP community to pull together and step up. Let’s keep SVP strong, really leverage our value of CONNECT and accomplish more together than we could alone.

How SVP Seattle partners can activate their philanthropy

Double down on your support for the organizations you care about – now and in the coming months. 

Were you planning on attending a nonprofit event?  Consider making your ticket purchase a donation, to show your support for the work that they do. Go online and make an additional contribution at a level that you would have made in attendance.  Your financial support now aligns with the values we strive for at SVP and stands in solidarity with organizations through this exceptionally challenging time.

COVID-19 Response Fund – SVP is a partner of the COVID-19 Response Fund. Hosted by Seattle Foundation, this fund will provide flexible resources to organizations in our region working with communities who are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and the economic consequences of this outbreak. The Fund is designed to complement the work of public health officials and expand local capacity to address all aspects of the outbreak as efficiently as possible. The Fund expects to move an initial round of grants within the next few weeks.

You can read more about the fund and donate here

See below for some ways to help SVP Investees. They are facing rapid changes to their operations and programing, and must determine how to serve families and students with the now announced school closures.  Interested in learning more on how you can help?  You can email Hana Gregory directly for the most up-to-date information.

Don’t forget to Support SVP Investees

Below is a list the SVP Investees who had/have events scheduled this spring.  Some have already been postponed, others are grappling with those tough choices now.  Please consider donating and increase your support. Many Investees are looking for quick volunteer advice and resources on things such as coordinating remote teams, IT and computer advice and set-up, crisis communications and marketing, financial planning and scenario planning. Please contact Hana Gregory at hanag@svpseattle.org to learn more about any of the emerging needs of Investees. Click the button below to see current Investee needs.