Resilience & Reimagining: The Impact of UpStart’s Covid-19 Response

Conducted by Rosov Consulting, this report looks at the impact of UpStart’s $800,000 Jewish Innovator Payroll Relief Fund, which provided grants of up to $25,000 to 32 ventures during April and May. It also evaluates the programming and resources UpStart offered to its alumni and members of its network, focused on developing skills, knowledge and resilience.

Among the findings: Grantees collectively reported that the funding had enabled them to retain 174 staff, deliver 362 programs, and serve 1,020,647 participants. They reported that the funding afforded staff the time, mental space, and emotional security to focus on critical tasks to keep their organizations stable and functioning (and even, in some cases, thriving). This included planning and implementing new and pivoted online programming, understanding and working to meet community needs, exploring new approaches to fundraising, and engaging in strategic and scenario planning—all with the mental and emotional relief of avoiding immediate staff reductions and knowing that someone in the broader community “has their back.”