The NBA Social Entrepreneurship Program strives to encourage and support the development of new and innovative health and social service ministries and organizations by Disciples. These ministries, in turn, inform and inspire fellow Disciples throughout our communities and across the life of the church. Together, we expand the church's understanding of and capacity for health and social service ministry as part of Christ's work in the world.
The goal of this Social Entrepreneurship program is to support and empower new Disciple-related health and social service organizations, projects, and ministries—what we’re also calling social enterprises—to focus on their growth, strengthen their impact, and work toward sustainability.
Ways To Be Involved
You can engage with the NBA Social Entrepreneurship Initiative as a Participant, Partner, or Consultant.
The National Benevolent Association is now accepting Incubate Partner applications from Disciples health and social service organizations. Being in partnership with NBA involves a multi-year relationship that includes a specialized menu of resources and support for your young ministry/organization.
Our Partners receive a maximum of four years of access to professional consultants, opportunities for learning, peer support, and grant funding. In a spirit of mutuality, Incubate Partners agree to share the story of their mission with the wider Disciples community and beyond. Together, we expand the church's understanding of and capacity for health and social service ministry as part of Christ's work in the world.
To be eligible to become an Incubate Partner, projects should be:
- Incorporated for 10 years or less.
- Disciples-affiliated. This means: being founded in partnership with a Disciples congregation or the NBA; having a set percentage of Disciples board members; and/or having an Executive Director/CEO who is a member of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ).
- Health and/or social service-related.
- Aligned with the mission of the NBA.
- Tax-exempt nonprofit.
- Innovative: serving communities in creative and unique ways.
- Diverse: this includes organizations with diverse staffs and leadership teams, as well as projects that serve Black, Indigenous and/or other communities of color.
NBA's Social Entrepreneurship program represents an environment of support with a menu of resources that the NBA has available to new social enterprises in the early years of their development. Those resources vary depending on whether a project is involved with NBA as an Incubate Partner or a SENT participant.
Those who have attended SENT Seminar/Leadership Academy’s Social Enterprise Track or with whom we are in active conversation about Social Entrepreneurship can be part of NBA's SENT Cohort for the 12-months following their initial involvement in the SENT Seminar. During this time, participants will be able to access certain resources from NBA, while also contributing to the spread and development of the Social Entrepreneurship Program. Resources include:
- Project featured one or more times through shared NBA materials
- Access to short-term consultations with NBA-related professionals/consultants
- A retreat, for spiritual and physical renewal
- Opportunity to apply for assistance with site visits to similar projects/organizations
- Ongoing communications and learning/networking opportunities through NBA
Social Entrepreneurship Consultants
Professionals in the fields of marketing, development, leadership/visioning, and more can support and work with Social Entrepreneurship partners and participants in a variety of ways - presenting workshops and webinars, writing blogs, providing resources, offering short-term consultations, etc. For more information, contact Darnell Fennell, NBA Director of Social Entrepreneurship
Meet our Incubate Partners
Click the links below to learn more about these innovative and impactful organizations!
- Garden of Eden Health Center - Jayuya, PR
- HER Faith Ministries - Memphis, TN
- Mission Behind Bars and Beyond - Louisville, KY
- New Communion - Winston-Salem, NC
- Oakland Peace Center - Oakland, CA
- Oklahoma Family Empowerment Center - Tulsa, OK
- QC Family Tree - Charlotte, NC
- Recovery Cafe San Jose - San Jose, CA
- UrbanMission Community Partners - Pomona, CA
- Broken, Mended and Restored - Los Angeles, CA
- StoryWagen - Kansas City, MO
- Good Life Care Resource Center - Los Angeles, CA
Read Social Entrepreneurship Stories
- NBA Social Entrepreneurship Initiative blog feed >>
- Reflections for the 2018 SENT Seminar Participants >>
- Reflections from the 2017 SENT Seminar Participants >>
- Reflections from the 2016 SENT Seminar Participants >>
- Reflections from the 2015 Leadership Academy Entrepreneur Track Participants >>
Attend Social Entrepreneurship Events
- View all upcoming social entrepreneurship events
- SENT Seminar, equipping social entrepreneurs for leadership and change