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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Second Chance Youth Garden wins grand prize of $10,000 in Mission Edge’s San Diego Accelerator + Impact Lab

Press Release – November 6, 2017 – SAN DIEGO, CAMission Edge has announced the winning social enterprise for the San Diego Accelerator and Impact Lab (SAIL) Pitch Night, which took place on October 24th at 5:30 PM in the Irwin M. Jacobs Hall at Qualcomm. Sponsored by The San Diego Foundation, Union Bank, Qualcomm Incorporated, and Cox Communications, the SAIL Pitch Night highlighted the social enterprise ideas of seven nonprofit organizations, all of whom created cutting-edge, sustainable, revenue-based business models in alignment with their social missions. The Second Chance Youth Garden received the Qualcomm-sponsored audience choice award of $10,000.

The Second Chance Youth Garden is a six-week job training program for young people ages 14-21. The social enterprise program combines classroom and experiential learning to increase youth awareness of urban agriculture and food justice, and help move them towards successful high school graduation or employment. Their revenue model includes the sales of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) boxes, offering an easy way for people to buy fresh and local produce directly from the Youth Gardens while supporting low-income, at-risk or justice-involved youth in the community. The cost for 10 weekly boxes of fresh produce is $300, which allows Second Chance to provide stipends to youth in the program. More information about signing up for the CSA program can be found on Second Chance’s website.

“The Mission Edge SAIL Program provided us with the opportunity to rethink how we create and develop programs that align with our mission,” shared Kristin Kvernland. “Through this process, we were able to assess the percentage of our programmatic income that is garnered from our social enterprise, and build a model that will support Second Chance operations while also furthering our mission to disrupt the cycles of incarceration and poverty in San Diego.”

Each social enterprise who presented in the Pitch Night participated in the SAIL program, a robust ten-week accelerator led by Mission Edge and Impact Without Borders. SAIL’s curriculum and coaching focused on articulating, piloting, validating, planning, and pitching revenue-generating business models. SAIL participants worked closely with mentors and investors, while engaging in interactive workshops and benefitting from Mission Edge’s expert advisory services.

“We are really impressed with the caliber of the participants and innovative business models in the SAIL program. Mission Edge is honored to pioneer this exciting initiative and will continue to empower the burgeoning San Diego social enterprise community,” said Ken Davenport, Mission Edge CEO.

Participating organizations included:

“The San Diego Foundation collaborates with the region’s nonprofit community to pursue innovative strategies that help improve the quality of life for all San Diegans,” noted Kathlyn Mead, President & CEO of The San Diego Foundation. “The social enterprise ideas presented by these seven organizations show how non-traditional business models can yield dividends in community impact and nonprofit financial sustainability.”

The San Diego business community is also embracing the program’s impact and efforts to create a more innovative and sustainable social sector.

“Innovation isn’t just happening in the business world. It’s also happening in the community,” said Chanelle Hawken, Vice President of Public Affairs for Cox Communications. “As a company founded on innovative ideas, Cox Communications is proud to support the innovative efforts by nonprofit organizations working hard to make San Diego a better place.”

“Innovation and community impact are important for us,” commented SAIL sponsor Qualcomm. “Working with Mission Edge to champion social enterprise innovation is an important example of our commitment to foster the advancement of the San Diego community. The SAIL program is a natural extension of our collaboration, which includes helping myriad nonprofit organizations through our employee-led skills-based volunteer projects and community engagement initiatives.”

To learn more about SAIL, please contact Mission Edge at and connect with us on social media by using #SAILwithMissionEdge.

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