A panel of local social enterprise moguls have officially named Urban Street Angels the winner of Mission Edge’s Social Enterprise Accelerator + Impact Lab (SAIL) Pitch Night on June 12th at The Honor Foundation.
Urban Street Angels also received the Audience Choice Award at this Shark-Tank style pitch event. Throughout the evening, five program finalists pitched their social enterprise business models to a live audience of community members, funders, and a panel of expert judges.
During and following the event, more than $65,000 in funding was committed to SAIL participants through The San Diego Foundation (TSDF) Social Enterprise Fund. A sponsor of SAIL, TSDF established the Social Enterprise Fund to support the nonprofit community by empowering organizations to develop and grow sustainable, revenue-based business models in alignment with their social missions. At the pitch event, Kathlyn Mead, TSDF President & CEO, announced that TSDF would match up to $25,000 in contributions made to participating SAIL organizations through the Social Enterprise Fund through June 20th.
Urban Street Angels’ social enterprise, 8 West, produces and sells premium soap handcrafted in San Diego by homeless youth working to leave the streets behind for good. Their name refers to the western end of Interstate 8 at Ocean Beach, which has one of the largest homeless populations of youth in San Diego. 8 West provides employment, vital job skills, and soft skills to create a more employable workforce and, most importantly, hope for the future of homeless youth. Their soap and candles are available for purchase online at 8west.org, at the Holistic Science Co. in Ocean Beach, and at Seaside Market in Encinitas.
“I’m blown away,” said Urban Street Angels Founder and Executive Director Eric Lovett. “If I could say one thing about this experience, it would be to urge other organizations to participate in the SAIL program. The lessons we learned were invaluable, and the connections made throughout the experience continue to impact our organization in a way that we didn’t realize was possible. This truly is a great program.”
This is the second cohort of Mission Edge’s SAIL program, which empowers nonprofit organizations and purpose-driven businesses to develop sustainable business models based on earned revenue. SAIL provides a rich curriculum with content, tools, workshops, and lectures that help social entrepreneurs build and test their ideas. During the 14 week accelerator leading up to this event, 10 participating organizations completed five modules of curriculum, ranging from business model validation to professional pitch training, in preparation to launch or scale their social enterprises. Participants in the program worked closely with hand-picked mentors, subject matter experts, and Mission Edge’s advisory services to propel their social enterprise businesses forward.
“Being a lead mentor in Mission Edge’s SAIL program has been an incredible, mutually beneficial experience for me as an individual, a representative of Qualcomm, and as a lover and supporter of all things entrepreneurial,” says Kyle Moss, Qualcomm’s Wireless Reach program manager. “The organizations that earned their spot in the accelerator are all of such high-caliber that it has demanded an incredible network of players to come together for major, positive impact; the time spent has been well worth it and will have long-lasting beneficial impact waves throughout San Diego and beyond.”
Urban Street Angels received a $4,500 cash prize, three months at The Muse for Social Good co-working space, 10 hours of pro bono consulting from Diamond and Branch Marketing Group, and 18 hours of Mission Edge’s social enterprise consulting services. All participating organizations will receive 5 hours of Mission Edge’s consulting services, and one month of co-working space at The Muse for Social Good.
Finalists in the SAIL final pitch night included Urban Street Angels, iSAFE, YOUME Clothing, East County EDC, and TutorChat. SAIL is sponsored by The Qualcomm Foundation, The San Diego Foundation, The Walmart Foundation, San Diego Workforce Partnership, Mitchell International, Cox, First Republic Bank, The Honor Foundation, ResMed, Procopio, Tablecloth, and Diamond and Branch Marketing Group. To learn more about SAIL, please contact Mission Edge at email@example.com, and connect with us on social media @MissionEdgeSD and by using #SailwithMissionEdge.
About Mission Edge
Mission Edge is a social enterprise (501c3) that is dedicated to helping nonprofits and social entrepreneurs accomplish their mission. Since 2012, Mission Edge has assisted more than 200 organizations increase their strategic and operational effectiveness by providing affordable access to accounting and HR experts, fiscal sponsorship, best-practice systems and education, and skills-based corporate volunteers. To date, we have provided more than 85,000 hours of direct services and saved social enterprises and nonprofits more than $3 million.