PFS Watch: Key Grantees Named for Federal Pay-for-Success Venture

The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has released a list of grantees that will work on pay-for-success projects with the lead entities selected by the agency last year.

Pay-for-success (PFS) projects shift the burden of social investment off the government and onto private investors. Private sector investors front the capital for organizations to implement social programs.

The government only pays the initial investor back, with interest, if a specific set of outcomes are met. So, in essence, the government is now paying for outcomes and not services rendered.

Many of the PFS projects being explored through the CNCS grants involve child welfare, juvenile justice and family health. Following is a list of the grantees selected to work with the lead entities:

The Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)
CSH received a $750,000 grant to support communities nationwide implementing supportive housing PFS projects. The projects will focus specifically on high-cost, vulnerable populations – homeless individuals, youth and families, and disabled residents of health care institutions who prefer to live in the community.

CSH will hold an open competition to identify up to 12 communities across the country who want to implement Pay-for-Success-financed supportive housing.

Grantees Announced:

  • Ending Community Homelessness Coalition, Austin, Texas
  • New York State Department of Health, Albany
  • San Diego Housing Commission
  • State of New Mexico Human Services Department, Santa Fe
  • Volunteers of America Delaware Valley, Collingswood, N.J.
  • Washington State Health Care Authority, Olympia

Green & Healthy Homes Initiative (GHHI)
Green & Healthy Homes Initiative (formerly known as the Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning) received a grant of $1 million to assess the feasibility of asthma-related PFS projects benefitting low-income children who suffer from the disease. GHHI is already engaged in this work through a partnership with the Calvert Foundation and a large local health system in Baltimore.

In 2015, GHHI will conduct a nationwide, open competition for healthcare organizations and nonprofit service providers that are constructing asthma-related PFS projects. One health care entity, acting as a private investor, and one service provider will be selected in five U.S. cities, for a total of 10 sub-recipients. Those selected will receive technical assistance from GHHI to advance their project.

Grantees Announced:

  • Baystate Health, Springfield, Mass.
  • Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, Memphis
  • Monroe Plan for Medical Care, Pittsford, N.Y.
  • Spectrum Health Systems, Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • University of Utah Health Plans, Murray, Utah

Harvard Kennedy School Social Impact Bond Lab
The SIB Lab will use its $1.93 million grant to provide technical assistance to 10 local and state governments to build their capacity to pursue PFS projects.

Grantees Announced:

  • Arkansas Community Correction, Little Rock
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg
  • Olmstead Cohort (New York State Department of Health, State of New Mexico Human Services Department, Washington State Health Care Authority)
  • City of San Francisco, Calif.
  • D.C. Water, Washington, D.C.
  • Clark County, Las Vegas, Nevada

Institute for Child Success (ICS)
ICS will use their $782,412 grant to provide support to organizations who are implementing early childhood PFS projects. The Institute has been a leader in the field of PFS early childhood projects. In 2014, ICS organized the first national conference on PFS early childhood programs. They also conducted a nine-month feasibility study in South Carolina examining Nurse-Family Partnerships.

With the CNCS grant, ICS will hold another conference in 2015. Participants for the conference will be chosen through an open competition. ICS will then choose 12 grantees to provide technical assistance over three years to develop their early childhood PFS project.

Grantees Announced:

  • City of Spartanburg, S.C.
  • Sonoma County, Calif.
  • State of Connecticut
  • State of North Carolina
  • Washington State Dept. of Early Learning 

National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD)
NCCD was awarded $863,959 to assess the feasibility of Pay-for-Success projects in jurisdictions from states with the highest rates of racial and ethnic disparities. Those states are Wisconsin, California, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, Minnesota, Rhode Island, Nebraska and Washington, D.C.

As The Chronicle reported earlier this year, NCCD is currently involved in two other PFS projects in California, along with co-SIF grantee Third Sector Capital Partners. They are conducting a feasibility study to assess the possibility of Sector Capital Partners’ two PFS projects, one focusing on restorative justice and the other focusing on prevention services for child welfare-involved youth to prevent juvenile justice system cross-over.

In the next several months, NCCD will hold an open competition to select sub-recipients to receive technical assistance for up to two years.

No grantees announced yet.

Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFP)
NFP has received $3.6 million to advance late-stage PFS projects in a variety of geographic locations and social issues. NFP will work with governments and organizations that have near-term opportunities to implement Pay-for-Success projects that have already been deemed viable through feasibility assessments.

NFP is the only organization contributing to PFS projects in the later stages of implementation.

No grantees announced yet.

Third Sector Capital Partners
Third Sector Capital Partners, a PFS advisory firm, has received $1.9 million to provide states and local governments with technical assistance to implement PFS projects that focus on economic opportunity, healthy futures, and youth development.

In the coming months, Third Sector will hold an open competition to select approximately 10 sub-recipients across two cohorts to receive services valued at a minimum of $50,000.

Third Sector is currently partnered with NCCD to conduct feasibility studies in two California counties.

Grantees Announced:

  • Travis County, Texas
  • Children and Families Commission of Orange County, Calif.
  • Virginia Pay for Success, Richmond, Va.
  • Year Up, Inc., Boston
  • Center for Evidence-Based Policy and Friends of the Children, Portland, Ore.
  • Clark County, Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Washington State Department of Early Learning and Thrive Washington, Olympia

University of Utah, David Eccles School of Business PFS Lab
The University received $1.15 million to expand their PFS lab within the James Lee Sorenson Center for Global Impact Investing at the University of Utah’s Business School. The lab will work with sub-grantees to build the PFS field in the Western U.S., with an initial focus on the intermountain west. The grant will be used to expand, and increase awareness around PFS financing models.

No grantees announced yet.

Pay-for-Success Watch is mostly written by Chronicle Editor John Kelly and Money & Business Editor Judith Fenlon.

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John Kelly is editor-in-chief of The Chronicle of Social Change.