Pitch meetings are common in Hollywood and in the world of venture capital. But this week 10 small non-profit organizations will use the format to try to raise money for their initiatives to improve life in Los Angeles County.
One pitch will come from an organization called Cardborigami, which makes a treated cardboard shelter for homeless people that folds up and fits in a backpack during the day. Another non-profit making its pitch will be Get on the Bus, which escorts children as they visit a parent in prison.
The organizations will make their three-minute pitches at Annenberg Alchemy’s Peer to Peer, sponsored by the Annenberg Foundation and Los Angeles Social Venture Partners. The Social Innovation Fast-Pitch Competition was scheduled for Tuesday at Club Nokia at L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles.
More than 100 organizations applied for the competition. The 10 finalists that will be making three-minute pitches were assigned volunteer coaches – lawyers, marketing executives, consultants and professors – to help them hone their message. The finalists will compete for $100,000 in prize money from the sponsors; the top winner will get $60,000 and three other winners will get smaller amounts.
Diane Helfrey, executive director of Social Venture Partners, said the communication skills developed for the competition are more valuable than the prize money because it can help the organizations land other grants.
“We want to help non-profits develop that skill of picking the right components in their message to make an emotional connection with potential supporters,” Helfrey said.