25 Jan

United Way of R.I. Seeks Design Team

United Way Seeks Applicants for Design Team that Will Help to Create a Statewide Nonprofit Resource Center

10 nonprofit leaders sought to guide and develop a new entity to support the capacity and needs of Rhode Island’s nonprofit sector; seven-month project offers $4,000 stipend

Providence, R.I. (January 24, 2022) — In response to the crucial need to support the state’s nonprofits and the essential work they provide our neighbors day in and day out, United Way of Rhode Island is leading the nonprofit community in creating a central, singular center aimed at strengthening the sector as a whole. Today, the organization has placed a call for applicants for the Design Team that will be tasked with guiding the development of a statewide Nonprofit Resource Center. A total of 10 nonprofit leaders will be chosen for the seven-month project and receive a stipend for their participation. Applications may be submitted online. The deadline is Feb. 11.

“Businesses have a chamber of commerce and most all other states feature an organization that broadly supports its nonprofits, but nothing like that exists in Rhode Island and it needs to,” said Cortney Nicolato, United Way’s president and CEO. “Nonprofits provide essential services, enrich communities, and create opportunities for our neighbors, and in order to sustain that vital work, we must ensure an efficient, effective, and equitable landscape of supports that grow their capacity.”

In developing a Nonprofit Resource Center, United Way seeks to establish an entity that will serve Rhode Island’s entire nonprofit ecosystem while prioritizing the needs and perspectives of BIPOC-led and other small and mid-size nonprofits. This includes providing training, advocacy, visibility, and research to advance organizations’ resiliency, capacity, and infrastructure. At its core, the center will foster innovation and collaboration as a resource hub that brings together nonprofits and philanthropy in order to maximize positive social impact. Creating the center is a key component of the Invest United pillar of United Way’s LIVE UNITED 2025 plan and advances the goals of growing nonprofit resiliency, capacity building, and leadership development

“The center will provide professional development and more for experienced nonprofit leaders, as well as those new to the field,” added Nicolato. “Nonprofit workers are often overlooked as an employment sector and are increasingly leaving the field because they don’t have the supports they need. This center will bring together the resources that enable them to flourish while they help our communities thrive.”

Design Team members will play a vital role in co-creating the vision for the center. Members will engage with stakeholders throughout the state and respond to research to inform how the Nonprofit Resource Center can be structured, staffed, and funded, and then shape a recommendation to United Way. Design Team responsibilities include participating in biweekly, 90-minute virtual meetings from February through August; engaging in one research activity to establish a shared understanding of the current reality for nonprofits; and serving as a champion for the effort to colleagues and others.

The role requires a time commitment of approximately 40 hours over the course of the seven months, with a stipend of $4,000 being provided. Interested applicants must have firsthand leadership experience with a Rhode Island nonprofit, and a passion for the state’s nonprofit sector.

Applications may be completed online, or by contacting Lori Bartczark of Community Wealth Partners at lbartczak@communitywealth.com or (202) 618-4794. Community Wealth Partners is a consulting firm contracted by United Way of Rhode Island to help develop the plan for the center. Additionally, anyone interested in applying and in need of multilingual support may call 211 for translation options.

An optional, virtual information session for nonprofit leaders interested in learning more about the Design Team opportunity will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 1 at 1 p.m. Those who wish to attend are asked to pre-register online.


United Way of Rhode Island is uniting our community and resources to build racial equity and opportunities for all Rhode Islanders. A member of the world’s largest nonprofit network, we bring together individuals, businesses, nonprofits, community leaders, and government to tackle the root causes of inequity and achieve specific, measurable goals. Our programs include 211, the statewide front door connecting Rhode Islanders with social services, resources, and vital programs. Both directly and through grants to nonprofits, we are investing to build economic opportunity, advance childhood learning, expand philanthropy, and drive policy and participation. To learn more, visit unitedwayri.org, or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

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