Introducing The August Napoli Fund for Anti-Poverty Innovation

In the social services ecosystem, innovative outside-the-box initiatives are often best suited to permanently break the cycle of generational poverty. But since they’re new and untested, these programs are the most difficult to fund. Housed within United Way’s Impact Institute, the August Napoli Fund for Anti-Poverty Innovation at United Way of Greater Cleveland addresses this problem by granting funds to catalyze early-or idea-stage anti-poverty initiatives that have the potential for transformative impact.

About The Fund

Today’s United Way is the region’s leading anti-poverty organization, implementing strategies that both treat poverty’s symptoms through its Community Hub for Basic Needs and upend poverty’s root causes through its Impact Institute. This dual-pronged approach is moving the needle on poverty in profound ways and represents a new, more nimble, more effective United Way.

The Impact Institute seeks to disrupt entrenched poverty by incubating innovative early-stage programming. Venture philanthropic capital provides funding to design and implement groundbreaking anti-poverty Impact Institute initiatives. Those programs which demonstrate proof of concept are then scaled in conjunction with strategic public-and private-sector partners. Ultimately, these initiatives drive systemic, multi-generational change.

The August Napoli Fund for Anti-Poverty Innovation at United Way of Greater Cleveland is housed within United Way’s Impact Institute. The Fund complements United Way’s existing Impact Institute initiatives by granting seed capital to incubate innovative early-stage anti-poverty strategies that are aligned with United Way’s Impact Institute goals. Initiatives that receive support are designed to 1) meaningfully increase efficacy of the non-profit service-delivery system or 2) drive sustainable, transformative change for communities. The Fund preferences bold, new ideas for solving entrenched poverty related problems.

Together, newly funded programs and the Impact Institute’s existing initiatives power transformative change for communities experiencing poverty.

About Augie Napoli

Under the leadership of CEO Augie Napoli, United Way of Greater Cleveland has undergone a transformation. The United Way of the past distributed money to a broad swath of agencies and hoped for change. The new United Way is a network leader that channels philanthropic investments into sophisticated –often groundbreaking –programs to measurably reduce poverty.

Augie, who joined United Way as CEO in 2016, has been a catalyst for change for decades implementing structural changes to entrenched systems and legacy organizations. The result of his creativity has put thousands on a pathway out of poverty and elevated our collective humanity through arts and culture. In honor of Augie’s transformative impact on the communities United Way serves, the August Napoli Fund for Anti-Poverty Innovation at United Way of Greater Cleveland advances the reimagined anti-poverty agenda Augie built at United Way. In this way, the Fund is an enduring symbol of Augie’s innovative thinking and bold action.

Thank You to Our Lead Investor:

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