Nonprofit Innovation Lab

A selective six-month program offering up to 10 Rhode Island nonprofits the opportunity to transform innovative ideas into reality.

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Meet the 2022 Fellows!

We're excited to introduce you to the 2022 fellows from the Nonprofit Innovation Lab. On February 1st, they will pitch their innovative ideas for a chance to win a share of $90,000 in seed funding!

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Public Choice Award

Help us determine the winner of the Public Choice Award by voting on your favorite idea! Vote by February 1st to help determine the Public Choice Award winner.

Vote Here!

Innovation Showcase & Pitch Night

Join us at the Guild on February 1st at 5pm to celebrate RI’s nonprofit sector, see the pitches live, and celebrate the winners!

Register here!

Explore innovative, self-sustaining solutions that will expand and accelerate your ability to create positive social impact, with:

  • An Opportunity to Think Big
    Set aside dedicated time, energy, and resources to further your organization’s ability to achieve its mission.

  • Coaching & Network
    Connect to a wide network of industry professionals, including experienced coaches paired with you based on expertise and need.

  • Peer Support
    Navigate the Boot Camp as a group and benefit by learning and sharing with like-minded leaders.

  • Seed Funding
    Stipends are offered for successfully completing program elements. Five organizations will be selected to participate in the final pitch event for $90,000 in prize money.

  • Increased Visibility
    Increase visibility through media coverage, participation in community-wide events, and digital community engagement.

Program Components

Boot Camp

A 12-week Boot Camp during which Fellows receive intensive expert instruction via one 3-hour virtual session each week. Upon completion of Boot Camp, Fellows will have refined their innovation plan and set three milestone goals to achieve during the Milestone phase. Fellows receive a $5K stipend to support their time away from the organization and expenses related to the early development of the concept.

August - December 2022

During the Milestone phase, each Fellow meets regularly with mentors, who provide expert guidance as well as facilitate connections with advisors throughout the SEG and United Way networks. Fellows also meet monthly with program staff, who provide assistance and help sustain forward momentum as Fellows work toward their milestones.

Pitch Event

Five of the ten fellows are selected to pitch their final innovation plan, and the top three will receive a total of $90,000 in prize money (1st place, $50,000; 2nd place, $25,000; 3rd place, $15,000).

If you...

  • Are the executive director or senior leader of a 501(c)3 nonprofit
  • Have identified a clear social problem or compelling idea, and can demonstrate why you are best suited to solve for it
  • Can demonstrate your organization's capacity and growth, and how it would benefit from participation in the program
  • Exhibit a strong passion and commitment for social impact and your organization has clear potential to make measurable impact in Rhode Island

You're a perfect fit.

Get in Touch!

Application Timeline

  • Applications Open
    March 11th

  • Info Sessions
    March 17th, 23rd, 29th

  • Applications Close
    April 22nd

  • Panel Interviews
    May 4th

  • Cohort Decisions Announced
    May 10th

Info Sessions - Learn More About the Program
Join us for an info session to learn more about the program, hear from past fellows, and answer any questions! Check back soon to sign up for one of our three scheduled sessions.

Register Here
Register Here

Application Advising - Support While Applying
Feeling stuck on the application? Sign up for a one-on-one advising session to work through any gaps or questions you have while working on your application. We ask all advisees to make their best effort to complete all parts of the application they can ahead of this meeting. We invite candidates to apply even if their innovation idea is not fully developed yet.

Schedule a Session
Destenie Vital

Director, What Cheer Flower Farm
2021 First Place Winner

"What the Nonprofit Lab does is level the playing field, giving small nonprofits and BIPOC-led organizations, a chance to compete in a tough market in which organizations with the most resources and people power tend to dominate and acquire the most funding.

As a woman of color, operating in a space where merit was the foundation was highly affirming. My voice was respected, my voice was heard, and I was able to show up at every workshop as my authentic self. This speaks to the mission of SEG and the United Way of Rhode Island because it's the diversity, equity, inclusion, and access, we often hear about in theory... in practice.

If you are thinking about applying, do it!
Your organization will be better for it. You will be better for it.

2021 Winners

2020 Winners

Nonprofit Innovation Lab Alumni

United Way

This program is brought to you by
United Way of Rhode Island and Social Enterprise Greenhouse.

Contact Us

Get in touch

We're happy to answer any other questions you have!

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