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Press Release

Stand Together Foundation, University of Notre Dame Launch Measurement Pilot to Better Understand Philanthropy's Impact on People's Lives

National philanthropy community and Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities partner to connect community-based nonprofits with anti-poverty research and insight opportunities

ARLINGTON, Va., July 1, 2019 – Stand Together Foundation today announced the launch of a groundbreaking new impact measurement partnership with the University of Notre Dame’s Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities (LEO). Through the program, Notre Dame researchers will develop randomized control trials to answer specific research questions designed in partnership with select members of the Stand Together Foundation Catalyst Network, a growing group of 150+ highly effective social entrepreneur-led nonprofits fighting poverty in communities around the U.S.

“We’re thrilled to offer our Catalysts the chance to conduct high-caliber impact measurement studies with one of the nation’s pre-eminent academic institutions,” said Evan Feinberg, executive director of Stand Together Foundation. “Not only will this research provide insights that can improve the impact of nonprofits at an organizational level, but we believe we can change the culture of non-profits across the country from measuring services rendered to understanding the true impact on peoples’ lives.”

In September 2019, every pilot participant will present its study proposal to a panel of LEO experts before being matched with a research team to manage each customized evaluation. Stand Together Foundation, in addition to recommending trial participants, will provide resources necessary to prepare Catalysts to perform the data collection necessary for the launch of their impact study.

The research projects will kick off between January and June of 2020. Stand Together Foundation pilot participants include:

ACTS Housing provides low-income families with a team of experts to realize the dream of home ownership. The organization helps over 100 families each year buy and rehab their own homes. Over its existence, this has resulted in $136 million being invested into Milwaukee communities.

Back On My Feet combats homelessness through the power of running. Believing that confidence, strength, and self-esteem are key to life transformation, BOMF leverages the power of relationships through a running group of individuals battling homelessness and community volunteers.

ic. stars identifies, trains, and jump-starts technology careers for Chicago-area young adults through a two-year residency program. The program boasts a 55 percent college attendance rate, an 81 percent industry retention rate, and on average, graduates’ income increases nearly four-fold.

Jeremiah Program exists to empower single mothers and their children to thrive. The program connects women with safe, affordable housing; provides personal and professional skills training and coaching; places children in early childhood education centers; and creates a community where women can form supportive relationships.

NPower is launching tech careers and changing lives for military veterans and young adults in underserved communities by offering free training in critical tech areas. Eighty percent of participants graduate with a job or go on to further their education.

Rising Tide Capital advances entrepreneurial efforts in disadvantaged New Jersey neighborhoods by providing business development services through three programs: The Community Business Academy, Business Acceleration Services, and Credit-to-Capital.

“At LEO, we aim to work with social service providers to generate evidence on effective anti-poverty programs,” said LEO co-founder Dr. Jim Sullivan, Notre Dame Professor of Economics  and Gilbert F. Schaefer College Chair. “Stand Together Foundation is an ideal partner for us as they focus on identifying and supporting innovative social service providers that are dedicated to the same mission as LEO – to reduce poverty and improve lives through evidence-based programs and policies. By partnering with Stand Together Foundation our work will have much broader impact.”

For more information on the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities, visit

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