Twitter and Square co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey has donated $750,000 to Youth INC’s COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund through his philanthropic initiative #StartSmall, bringing the Fund to over $2 million raised to date. This transformational gift extends ongoing support to Youth INC’s Partner Network of more than 75 youth development organizations that provide vital services to over 200,000 New York City youth each year.
Established at the outset of the pandemic, Youth INC’s COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund helps organizations navigate the unprecedented challenges created by the pandemic. Jack Dorsey’s #StartSmall initiative recognizes that community-based organizations are often in the best position to help those in need and views the investment in Youth INC, a leading intermediary capacity builder, as a way to reach them.
“We admire and applaud Jack Dorsey and #StartSmall for their leadership in trust-based philanthropy, recognizing that nonprofit leaders know best how to utilize funds to fuel their mission,” said Rehana Farrell, executive director of Youth INC. “Our nonprofit partners continue to work tirelessly to support young people and their families across New York City, and we are grateful to #StartSmall for their investment to help ensure they can continue to do so without interruption.”
In 2020, Youth INC distributed $1 million in general operating grants from the Fund to help its nonprofit partners stabilize operations and bolster financial viability in light of cascading challenges that rippled through the nonprofit sector in the pandemic’s wake. “The pandemic has afforded an opportunity for a shift in funding relationships with grantees,” said Wray Thorn, founder & chief executive, Clear Heights Capital and Youth INC Board Co-Chair. “We are working toward making trust-based philanthropy the norm to foster greater transparency, collaboration and trust with our Partner Network. We’re very grateful to be aligned with Jack Dorsey and his #StartSmall initiative in supporting our nonprofit partners and their incredible leaders.”
In addition to its COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund, Youth INC provided capacity-building resources for its partners to support their digital transformations, from programing to fundraising events to keeping young people safe online. Youth INC also assisted in managing remote teams, crisis communications, financial analysis and contingency planning, and SBA 7(a)PPP support. To date, the organization has recruited over 150 corporate volunteers to fuel these efforts and is also providing consulting through a network of pro bono experts. Youth INC’s venture philanthropy model provides its programming to its nonprofit partners free of charge.
Additional investors in Youth INC's COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund include The Blackstone Charitable Foundation, Nuveen, Neeti Methukunta & Mahesh Saireddy, Roger Ferguson and Annette Nazareth, Rhonda and Stratton Heath, Barbara Marcin, Eurazeo, Goldman Sachs, PJT Partners, CVC Capital Partners, Alix Partners, Apollo Global Management, Nasdaq, L.E.K. Consulting, Capital Group, William Blair, GCM Grosvenor, Mike Perry, Mark DiMilia, Kathleen McCabe, Emmett McCann, Steve Orr, Dhan Pai, Dan Pine, Rick Schifter, Alan Schwartz, Adrianne Shapira, Wray Thorn, Ted Virtue, Evan Wildstein, Youth INC's Young Professionals Board and many others.