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Who can work with Cultivate?

We work with people who deeply care about their community and have a vision for their community to be stronger and healthier. We support people who is passionate, driven and dedicated to making their vision a reality. We work with people who are willing and ready to make their work more powerful and successful by working together with Cultivate and others.


What is the process for joining the program?

First, determine which program tier is best for you. See program tiers here.

You can sign up directly for Level 1 and Level 2 of our training program at any time. If you want to learn more before signing up, schedule a call with us.


If you are interested in applying for Level 3 of our training program:

  1. Fill out the  Interest Form.
  2. We will have a meeting, phone call, or online video call with you to learn more about you and answer your questions.
  3. Fill out the Training Application that will be emailed to you. 
  4. If you are accepted, you will receive an Introduction Packet that will further explain your training with Cultivate.
  5. You will receive access to our online training program to read, along with videos and audio lectures, that you must work through. Each course will have homework that you must finish and submit before you continue in the training. We expect that you work a minimum of 2 hours each week on your training, but more is best. You will be part of a cohort and expected to follow the cohort timeline of training as much as possible.


Once you complete the beginner training, no matter which level you choose, you can submit a Partnerships & Project Application for your current program or a program you wish to start. Approved projects can then begin accepting donations from donors through Cultivate. You will now have a fundraising page on Cultivate's website where donors can give to your project.

  1. We will also have frequent meetings or calls with you to help you become a better leader, run a stronger program, and receive more donations to support your work.
  2. We will connect you to mentors, coaches, and volunteers who will also help you. These people will communicate with you and help you using email and online tools, but may also visit your community someday.
  3. Occasionally a Training Conference may be held in your community or in a region near you. When these are scheduled, you will be invited to attend and Cultivate will help you to find the funds needed to cover these costs. These training conferences will build your capacity even further and connect you to other working with Cultivate.
  4. You can continue participating in our program for as long as you wish. We will continue to offer you help so that your program can grow and have long-term sustainability.

What can I get from the program?

We will offer you help to grow as a leader and have a healthy, successful community charitable program. This is done through three program phases: 


As a trainee, you will learn about leadership, community development, project planning, communications, fundraising, financial management, technology, impact measurement, and project management. We help you build a strong foundation for your program so you can achieve greater success. The training is done through online lessons, video and audio lectures, homework, and hands-on activities.


Once you finish the beginner training program, you can apply to become a Cultivate partner. We connect our partners with volunteers, mentors, and coaches who offer their talents, expertise, and guidance to help our partners and their programs.


As a partner, we also provide you the tools, support, and platform for fundraising so your project can receive financial support from American donors.

Will Cultivate fund my program or project?

Cultivate does not give financial support to trainees, partners or their programs. Though we help you with fundraising, we do not do the work for you.

Is there a cost to join the program?

Yes. There is a fee for the training program. This fee helps us cover our costs to offer you the program.

There are three levels which cost $100, $250, or $2000. To learn more about the levels, read here.

If you are unable to pay for this fee, you will need to do two things.

  1. Find others who can sponsor you. You can ask people in your community, your faith group, your school, your workplace, and even your family. People can make contributions to Cultivate to help you cover the program fees. You can learn more about this option here.
  2. For the remaining amount that you are unable to raise through sponsorships, you can apply for a scholarship through Cultivate. Scholarship funds are limited and are not guaranteed, but we will do everything we can to help you get the funds that you need. 

Once I have an approved project, is there a fee for fundraising under Cultivate?

Yes, approved projects are charged an 8% fee on all designated donations that are given. This fee is to help Cultivate cover costs for transferring money to the project, to process donations made with credit cards, and to manage the financial accounting and reporting that must be done to various agencies and government departments.

What are requirements for partners and their projects?

A Cultivate partner is someone who has completed our beginner training. A partner must be either native to the community they seek to serve (i.e. a Kenyan working in Kenya, an American Latino serving the American Latino immigrant community in Minneapolis) or someone from an under-represented community serving a wider community (i.e. a Native American serving their neighborhood community). A partner must agree to and adhere to our Partnership Agreements.

A Cultivate project is an endeavor by a partner that has been approved to receive assistance in the form of training, volunteer matching, and fundraising assistance. All projects must comply with the following policies:

  1. A project must be led by a partner.
  2. A partner must complete the Cultivate training program.
  3. A project can have already established programs but seek to expand or adapt their work or be newly established.
  4. A project cannot have a 501c3 tax exempt status in the USA, or other fiscal sponsors in the USA.
  5. A project must include a component that is charitable in nature, that contributes to the greater community good and addresses local poverty or injustices.
  6. Projects can have, and are encouraged to have, profit-generating/business components alongside their charitable work.

Who will be my coaches and how will they help me?

Cultivate coaches are people who are trained to support our partners to work through the Cultivate program, their goals and strategies for their project, and to build their capacity as community leaders. Coaches are simply people who have a desire to support the partner’s project and will give of their time, resources, skills, knowledge, and networks to help in whatever ways they can.

Cultivate also has volunteers who have special talents in specific fields such as photography/video-making, technology, financial accounting, marketing, etc. They help our partners when needed.

Can I try out the training program first before applying?

You can see samples of our training here, this will give you a good idea of how it works and what is in it.

If you are interested in Level 1 or Level 2 of our training program, you must first pay for the program before you can begin. However, we offer refunds. You can learn more about our refund policy here.

If you apply for a scholarship to the program at any level and are accepted, you will have full access to the program right away. If you choose to pay for the program yourself, find people who will sponsor you, you can begin the program to test it out and then request a refund if you change your mind.

If you are interested in Level 3 of our training program, we do not offer refunds once you have been accepted, as we have a limited number of spots available in the cohort. We need you to start the application process first, which helps us get to know you and ensure that you understand what the program is and what it is not. You simply start by filling out the interest form and then setting up a phone call or online call with our staff. During this call we will explain to you what our program offers. If you are still interested in the program, there is a short application form we will need to receive from you.