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Our history

In 2012, a group of social entrepreneurs and philanthropists began discussions about the need in Connecticut for a model of philanthropy that would go beyond traditional grant-making and provide more comprehensive support to social ventures.


Recognizing an alignment with the model of engaged philanthropy created by Seattle-based Social Venture Partners International, the founding group joined the SVP network in October 2013 and launched Social Venture Partners Connecticut. Today, the network spans over 40 affiliates across the globe.   


In its early years, SVP CT focused on building its membership and developing its infrastructure with a focus on supporting innovative social enterprises. The organization established a board of directors, recruited volunteer partners, and began to develop partnerships with other organizations. 


Over time, SVP CT evolved its mission to encompass a broader range of social and economic issues and expanded its work from capacity building with nonprofit organizations to include systems change efforts with government agencies. Today, the organization is focused on building a thriving Connecticut with racial equity and economic security for all people as its mission. Through a lens of racial equity, SVP CT’s work focuses on two key sectors: early childhood education and workforce development.

Since its founding, SVP CT has supported a wide range of nonprofit organizations, government entities, and systems change initiatives by providing funding, staffing capacity, technical expertise, and thought partnership to support their growth and development, and scale their impact. Together, the volunteer partners and staff of SVP have played a key role in building a stronger and more resilient social sector in Connecticut.

SVP CT’s history is a testament to the power of collective action and investment in solutions. The organization’s work demonstrates the importance of collaboration, innovation, and a long-term commitment to building stronger and more equitable communities.