(I have quoted liberally from Echoing Green 's web site.)
Echoing Green provides first-stage funding and support to visionary leaders with bold ideas for social change. As an angel investor in the social sector, Echoing Green identifies, funds and supports the world's most exceptional emerging leaders and the organizations they launch. Through a two-year fellowship program, we help passionate social entrepreneurs develop new solutions to some of society's most difficult problems. These social entrepreneurs and their organizations work to close deeply-rooted social, economic and political inequities to ensure equal access and help all individuals reach their potential.
WHAT THEY BELIEVE
o Social entrepreneurs play a vital role in driving social change
o Social change is created by developing new approaches to social problems that address root causes
o The next big idea will come from a robust pipeline of new leaders with innovative solutions
o New organizations, unconstrained by tradition, are best able to challenge the status quo
HOW THEY MAKE A DIFFERENCE
o Identify Visionaries
o Invest in Innovation
o Provide Hands-on Support
o Connect People
Echoing Green also believes that the entrepreneurial spirit that has driven the U.S. economy throughout its history can foster new solutions in the social sector. They take risks on undiscovered leaders when other organizations won't. They state that "Less than two percent of all foundation support is available for seed funding, making Echoing Green a leading global social venture fund that invests in new organizations at their earliest stages."
Echoing Green has invested nearly $25 million to help more than 400 visionary leaders spark positive change in 30 countries. They have done this by helping to launch "model organizations working in education, youth development, health care, housing, environmental justice, human and civil rights, economic and social justice, the arts and immigration." Echoing Green's website states that: "According to a recent study (conducted in 2004) Echoing Green fellows' organizations have raised more than $930 million in additional funding beyond Echoing Green's initial investment. Seventy-seven percent of organizations launched by Echoing Green Fellows are still in existence, and 85 percent of Echoing Green Fellows stay in leadership positions in the social sector."