Mission & Vision
We believe some of the most important work being done in America today is the result of individuals and organizations solving problems in their communities. Faith-based organizations, volunteer groups, businesses, and community leaders are breaking through barriers to help others break the cycle of poverty, improve their lives, and make the world a better place.
Stand Together identifies, supports, and celebrates these catalysts for social change. We provide training and resources to help them build operational capacity. We establish clear performance expectations, and we encourage these catalysts to think like entrepreneurs in order to promote acceleration, scalability, and risk-taking.
Our mission is to unleash the power of community to solve our country’s toughest problems and help people improve their lives.
Cyclical poverty is deeply rooted, and we recognize the complexity of poverty requires comprehensive, individualized solutions. We believe the most effective solutions to poverty address its roots while harnessing the gifts and talents of an individual to foster self-sufficiency. We partner with organizations that uphold the dignity of individuals by tapping into their potential and that promote a culture of freedom, well-being, and respect.
Organizations in our portfolio tackle poverty from multiple angles. We look for organizations that address the five interconnected factors that research confirms perpetuate the cycle of poverty: chronic unemployment, family breakdown, addiction and trauma, personal debt, and educational failure.
What We Do
Stand Together partners with organizations that revitalize communities and transform lives by empowering the individual.
- We identify and cultivate promising organizations with the potential for scalable impact — we call them “Catalysts” — and we connect them to a network of like-minded peers, mentors, and donors.
- We invest in Catalysts by providing financial support, training, and consulting through the Catalyst Program and venture investments.
- We amplify Catalysts by providing targeted marketing and communications support through excellent storytelling.
The Catalyst Program
Stand Together conducts a six-month Catalyst Program for transformative, innovative organizations that are building sustainable solutions to the country’s toughest problems. The program provides access to resources, industry best practices, and a growing network of dynamic leaders. Participants choose an obstacle specific to their organization to tackle over the course of the program with support from their peers and experts in the field. Industry experts lead interactive online sessions and guide participants through curriculum on topics such as organizational development, strategic partnerships, and measurement and growth.
Each Catalyst class is a small cohort of 10-20 organizations seeking social change in a variety of ways. Focus areas include workforce development, at-risk youth, housing, substance abuse, criminal justice, homelessness, education, hunger, and more. Through the course of the program, organizations can encounter new ideas, seize opportunities to collaborate, and poise to grow, scale, and replicate.
Organizations that are poised to scale and replicate are eligible to receive more robust organizational development services through our increased level of investments. We take a venture philanthropy approach to helping our partners maximize their impact. We find that the social return on an investment becomes measurable and replicable when community-based nonprofit organizations focus on outcomes and operate with the same management principles as for-profit businesses. Together, we develop and work toward shared objectives that are measurable and sustainable, ensuring clear goals and accountability along the way. Unlike passive philanthropists, we see ourselves as institutional shareholders in their success. We connect our partners with services and expertise to support them as they look to hone their effectiveness or replicate their model into new communities.
Many times, for-profit businesses offer the most effective solutions to community change. Impact investing is at the cutting edge of philanthropy. Powered by free enterprise and market demand, revenue-generating investments with a social impact help achieve philanthropic ends through attractive returns and revenue. Stand Together is building partnerships and vehicles to make for-profit investments to sustainably help others improve their lives.
We have established relationships with several organizations across the country. Each investment is unique, tailored to the specific needs, obstacles, and growth potential of each organization. Our more significant investments include various organizational development services, such as marketing and communications support, technology processes, measurement and growth strategies, leadership and management counseling, and organizational design.
A common need among our Catalysts is help to tell stories that inspire others and connect individuals with each organization directly. Through high quality multimedia content leveraged through multiple outlets, we seek to inspire a movement of social change by reaching millions of Americans with these stories of transformed lives. Our team produces powerful videos, written content, and marketing collateral to document and capture the history and innovative approach of our Catalysts and the lives they affect.
Who We Are
Stand Together is supported by The Seminar Network, a group of hundreds of business leaders led by Charles Koch with a vision for social change in America. The vision of the Seminar Network is to remove barriers that prevent people from realizing their potential, moving toward a society of mutual benefit in which people succeed by helping others improve their lives. The Seminar Network invests across key institutions in society, strengthening K-12 and higher education, supporting community-based solutions, encouraging principled business, and improving public policy. Stand Together’s unique focus is to help people improve their lives through innovative community solutions.
To read more about our team, visit our leadership and staff page.