Social Entrepreneurship for Poverty Alleviation

Social Entrepreneurship for Poverty Alleviation (SEPA)

Social Entrepreneurship for Poverty Alleviation

Social Entrepreneurship for Poverty Alleviation

SEPA project is a partnership between Austin College, the Texoma Council of Governments Community & Economic Development Program, and the Center for Rural Outreach & Public Service (CROPS), a grassroots initiative organized to meet the needs of rural America. SEPA focuses on engaging youth in community development through grant writing as an entrepreneurial endeavor, teaching technical aspects of grant writing and providing hands-on grant writing experience with a local nonprofit agency. Seven Austin College students and seven local nonprofit agencies from the Texoma region participated in the pilot project. Each student and nonprofit participant attended a two-day grant writing workshop taught by at Austin College to learn how to find, write, and win grants of all kinds.

This two-day workshop was taught by Beverly Santicola, Executive Director of CROPS and CEO of U.S. Government Grants, a national grant writing and community development training and consulting firm. After the two-day workshop, students were paired with a nonprofit for a paid summer internship to write grants that support specific projects and programs of that agency. Here, students learnt how nonprofit organizations collaborate, build philanthropic support, create solutions, seek new funds and effectively utilize limited resources to create social change.The Texoma Council of Governments has been documenting project outcomes by maintaining contact with participating student/nonprofit teams in order to gather the following data and information:

  1. number of grant submissions by each student/NPO team;
  2. dollar amount of grants submissions of each student/NPO team;
  3. number and dollar amount of grant awards from each student/NPO teams;
  4. number of jobs created or retained from grant award activities;
  5. number of beneficiaries addressed in the grant submissions;
  6. participant anecdotes about experiences, personal impact, and outcomes of the project

Social Entrepreneurship for Poverty Alleviation