National Service Blog

  • Posted on May 20, 2015

    As one of the first wave of federal Pay for Success (PFS) grantees, Third Sector Capital Partners prides itself on going the extra mile to support programs that help at-risk youth and young adults secure a living wage and the employment skills to gain self-sufficiency.

    With a $1.9 million grant from the Social Innovation Fund (SIF) in 2014, the Boston-based advisory firm is strengthening the ability of local governments and service providers to implement PFS, a new way of focusing on outcomes. Under a PFS-financed project, the government leverages philanthropic and private dollars so that government pays only after service providers generate tangible results.

    Through its federal award Third Sector is offering technical assistance to seven subrecipients across workforce development, education and social services, working with these agencies to develop their own capacity to implement PFS.

    But in addition to technical assistance, Third Sector is taking innovative steps to promote success of these efforts. Unique among the 2014 SIF PFS grantees, Third Sector is requiring subrecipients to provide matching funds so that these agencies also have a stake in developing effective pay-for-performance models.

    “It’s important for these agencies to have skin in the game,” said Tim Pennell, Third Sector associate director. The cash match may be small – a minimum of $25,000 – but it provides ample evidence of the organization’s commitment to the PFS concept.

    “It means they are putting...

  • Posted on Apr 24, 2015
    FoodCorps AmeriCorps Member Gets Big Surprise on Rachael Ray ShowHere’s a great segment from the Rachael Ray Show from earlier this week with the host and Jessica Alba featuring the service of FoodCorps AmeriCorps member Noel Webster. Follow the link to watch the big reveal for the Washington, DC, City Blossoms national service member who educates children about healthy foods and eating habits.
  • Posted on Apr 14, 2015
    AIDS United (formerly the National AIDS Fund) supports community-driven programs that serve people living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the virus that causes acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).In 2010, the Social Innovation Fund (SIF) selected AIDS United as one of its first grantees. Together with its 12 subgrantees, comprising the Access to Care (A2C) initiative, AIDS United is increasing the engagement of low-income and marginalized individuals who know they are HIV-positive but lack access to medical care and other supportive services.
  • Posted on Mar 23, 2015
    The Science of CuteIf you can find a more adorable way to show the potential 3D printing technology than this puppy’s new paws, we’d like to see it. Learn more at the White House Science Fair … and happy National Puppy Day!
  • Posted on Mar 3, 2015
    Individuals experiencing long-term homelessness also often suffer from medical fragility caused or aggravated by life on the streets and in shelters. Lacking stable access to housing and preventative health care services, they become “high-utilizers” of costly inpatient and emergency care.
  • Posted on Mar 3, 2015
    More than 40 grantee representatives, federal officials, and non-profit and social sector leaders participated in the three-day workshop, which featured rich conversations about lessons learned from early implementation of PFS projects, funded with $12 million from the SIF last fall.
  • Posted on Mar 3, 2015
    Nearly a million New Yorkers earn less than $20,000 per year because they lack the skills needed to secure a living-wage job. Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Jobs for New Yorkers Task Force seeks to better understand and combat this “skills gap.”
  • Posted on Feb 9, 2015
    Most low-income families face a litany of financial and employment challenges, which is why Social Innovation Fund (SIF) intermediary the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is expanding its comprehensive Financial Opportunity Centers and using data to inform these expansion efforts.These 75 centers nationwide represent both a workforce-development and asset-building programming model with services such as job readiness, employment training, financial coaching and help in accessing public benefits.
  • Posted on Feb 9, 2015
    The Social Innovation Fund (SIF) is a credible and consequential model for meeting unmet human needs in American communities. So says a new book providing a comprehensive history of the Obama Administration’s efforts to promote evidence-based social policy.
  • Posted on Feb 8, 2015
    When it comes to documenting the impact of services on some of the most disadvantaged Americans, REDF is sitting firmly at the cutting edge of innovation.The California-based nonprofit is a leader in identifying the “social return on investment” (SROI), an approach to assess the effect of services not only on an individual but also on society at large.
  • Posted on Nov 7, 2014
    I have several projects in response to the President's call to service. First of all I have, for 13 years, served on Veterans of Foreign Wars Honor Guard teams where I conduct funeral services for our heroes. I do the reading to honor the passing veterans. I have done hundreds and hundreds of funerals, if not thousands at a National Cemetery and private cemeteries in two states.

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