May 4, 2017


Ellesse Balli, Director of Communications, Sorenson Impact Center • 801.587.8343


Sorenson Impact Center Selects Seven Subrecipients to Participate in National Pay for Success Initiative

Two government entities and five nonprofit service providers have been selected to receive funding and technical support to advance evidence-based programs.


SALT LAKE CITY—May 4, 2017—The Sorenson Impact Center at the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business has awarded subgrants to five nonprofit service providers and two government entities to participate in a Pay for Success (PFS) feasibility program. The program is funded by the Corporation for National and Community Service’s (CNCS) Social Innovation Fund (SIF) and the Laura and John Arnold Foundation. The seven subgrantees will be the third cohort to participate in the Sorenson Impact Center’s PFS feasibility program, for a total of 27 participants since 2014. For the most recent cohort, 26 applicants (including both government jurisdictions and nonprofits) competed for subgrants.

“This SIF-funded program has been a cornerstone to many advantageous Pay for Success projects across the country,” said Jeremy Keele, President & CEO of the Sorenson Impact Center. “We’re delighted to offer technical assistance and capacity-building to yet another cohort of government jurisdictions and nonprofits that are dedicating themselves to making a measurable difference in people's lives.”

Pay for Success, an innovative public-private partnership model, combines nonprofit service expertise, private funding and independent evaluation to transform how government leaders respond to chronic social problems. Projects financed through the PFS model present opportunities to deliver more impactful services that create sustainable social change and avoid straining government budgets, thereby putting fewer taxpayer dollars at risk.

Through the PFS tool, the end-payor (typically a government jurisdiction) repays investors only if the program meets predetermined outcomes. Independent evaluators measure the outcomes of programs based on specific metrics that benefit both individuals and communities and ultimately generate value for taxpayers. An example of an intervention’s outcomes might be lower rates of homelessness or lower rates of recidivism.

The Sorenson Impact Center will work closely with the new cohort of subgrantees to advance the PFS model across the country by identifying evidence-based strategies, increasing performance and impact measurement through in-depth technical assistance provision, building financial models, and ultimately facilitating the development of high-quality PFS projects that improve the lives of individuals in these communities.

The new subgrantees aim to implement interventions in the issue areas of disability services, contraceptive access and education, recidivism among young adults, mentorship for at-risk youth, health and education for children with asthma, and early childhood education.

“As part of the Social Innovation Fund’s commitment to find and expand programs that work, we are proud to support governments and nonprofit service providers using innovative tools to increase accountability and evidence in social services,” said Lois Nembhard, acting director of the Social Innovation Fund. “This work will be a catalyst for Pay for Success in these states and will strengthen solutions for some of our country’s toughest problems.”

Since its inception in 2009, the SIF has grown into nearly a $1 billion social impact incubator within the federal government, creating public-private partnerships that deliver high-impact, community-based solutions that work. As a result of $341 million in federal grants and more than $672 million in non-federal match commitments, the SIF has awarded 51 grants to grant making institutions supporting more than 490 non-profits working in 46 states and the District of Columbia.

For its 2017 cohort, Sorenson Impact selected the following governments and nonprofit service providers to receive in-depth tailored technical assistance and cash sub-grants:

Columbus Community Center

The Columbus Community Center, a Salt Lake City nonprofit dedicated to providing disability services, developed and launched the “NextWork” program, a vocational training program for young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) that simultaneously engages employers to identify job categories and skillsets for which these young adults would be qualified. Their innovative approach focuses on longer-term outcomes of job placement, retention, and earnings, rather than simply training and program completion. Columbus plans to develop a feasibility study to determine the efficacy and potential of the NextWork program on a larger scale.

Friends of the Children

Launched in Portland, Oregon, Friends of the Children (FOTC) is an international nonprofit organization with a mentoring model for helping high-risk children avoid negative behaviors and achieve successful life outcomes. FOTC’s national program model pairs high-risk 5 and 6-year-olds with trained, full-time, salaried, professional mentors who sustain an unconditional 12.5 year relationship with each child, building social and emotional skills with the intentionality that empowers the achievement of successful life and school outcomes. Through this grant, Sorenson Impact will collaborate with FOTC to complete the already-initiated impact analyses in Portland with the integrated longitudinal dataset of child welfare, education, juvenile justice and self-sufficiency outcomes; and identify whether there is a sufficient value proposition to negotiate successful PFS contracts for further expansion of services.

Institute on Aging

Institute on Aging (IOA) focuses on transitioning and diverting older adults and adults ages 18 and over with disabilities out of California nursing homes. As IOA seeks to scale their program across the state, Sorenson Impact’s subgrant funding and technical assistance will help strengthen the evidence base for IOA’s intervention outcomes and cost savings of transitioning and diverting individuals out of nursing homes. Sorenson Impact’s technical assistance will also be imperative to conduct a feasibility study for a statewide project with the California Department of Health Services and further pursue Pay for Success financing. IOA’s project will target four northern California counties with the largest Medicaid nursing home populations, in which the state directly bears the risk for long-term care.

Planned Parenthood Association of Utah

By using the PFS model, Planned Parenthood Association of Utah (PPAU) plans to increase access to contraceptives and expand trainings to educate individuals about the importance of contraceptives through the statewide expansion of the HER Salt Lake Contraceptive Initiative. Based on the recent success of the initiative in PPAU Salt Lake County health centers, PPAU believes it will be able to reduce Utah’s unintended pregnancy and abortion rates within three years. Sorenson Impact will assist PPAU in scaling the intervention and impact measurement.

Richmond City Health District

Richmond City Health District (RCHD) has partnered with the Institute for Public Health Innovation and three major health systems in Virginia. It has developed the Pediatric Asthma Collaboration Workgroup (the Collaborative). The Collaborative is a comprehensive plan to improve health and education outcomes for children with asthma in Richmond, Virginia’s high-poverty, majority African-American areas. RCHD will work with Sorenson Impact on a PFS feasibility study to expand services and effectively connect with the necessary stakeholders to address this issue.


Operating in Lowell and Lawrence, Massachusetts, UTEC focuses on improving outcomes for young adults (ages 17 to 25) who have serious criminal records and/or gang involvement. UTEC will use Sorenson Impact’s subgrant funding and technical assistance to expand their 2 Generation (2Gen) approach, which focuses on supporting parents and children through onsite early childhood education, integrating employment and education for young adults, parenting skills training, and family engagement services. UTEC’s innovative, wraparound approach has been proven through their extensive use of data, which shows that UTEC’s programming significantly lowers recidivism rates for young people.

Washington State Department of Early Learning

The Washington State Department of Early Learning’s (DEL) home visiting and early intervention program seeks to prepare young children for success in school. The DEL is currently working to merge with the state’s child welfare and juvenile justice system and improve the reach, targeting, delivery, outcomes, evaluation, and quality improvement of their home visiting and early intervention programs. With assistance from Sorenson Impact, DEL plans to connect individual-level child data with administrative sources of outcomes data, continue program feasibility studies to develop a plan for a local or regional PFS project, and hire a fellow to coordinate the efforts of many stakeholders and drive the collective efforts forward.



About the Social Innovation Fund

The Social Innovation Fund is a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency that engages millions of Americans in service through its AmeriCorps, Senior Corps and Volunteer Generation Fund programs, and leads the nation’s volunteer and service efforts. SIF positions the federal government to be a catalyst for impact—using public and private resources to find and grow community-based nonprofits with evidence of results. The Social Innovation Fund focuses on overcoming challenges confronting low-income Americans in three areas of priority need: economic opportunity, healthy futures, and youth development. To learn more, visit 


About the Sorenson Impact Center
The Sorenson Impact Center is a think-and-do tank that marshals capital for social good, empowers data-driven programs, breaks down silos across sectors, and equips the next generation of leaders with social purpose.