The Embracing Disruption Cohort is a 15 month capacity building program developed to support organizations as they navigate an increasingly unpredictable world.

Application Deadline: June 21

Embracing Disruption is designed for:

  • Organizations who are receptive to change and reflect strong leadership. Agencies must field a leadership team of at least four members of staff and board.
  • Leadership Team members need to be committed to stay with the team to monitor the progress of the capacity work plan and stay engaged for the entire 15 month period.
  • Organizations must have ongoing programming that is critical to serving the communities within Onondaga, Madison, or Oswego Counties.
  • Want to learn more? Set up a meeting with Gifford’s Associate Director Lindsay McClung by clicking here.

The Embracing Disruption Cohort is a 15 month cohort capacity building program developed to support organizations as they navigate a rapidly changing environment. The curriculum uses a Nonprofit Lifecycles approach to organizational development. This program is designed to host five organizations through a self-assessment, planning process, and capacity implementation period. While similar to past Gifford programs like POWER and ADVANS, the Embracing Disruption Cohort program focuses heavily on building organizational resiliency in our increasingly unpredictable world.

The program design uses concepts developed under the direction of organizational consultant Dr. Susan Kenny Stevens. This “meet them where they are” approach is known as the Nonprofit Lifecycles Approach to capacity building. The Gifford Foundation launches this capacity building initiative with lead consultant Jennifer Bonnett, MPA, CLCC, CEO & President of the Nonprofit Lifecycles Institute.

About the Program

Gifford will select five organizations to participate in this round of Embracing Disruption.

We encourage any organization that is interested in applying and curious to learn more to contact our Associate Director Lindsay McClung for further guidance about program structure and eligibility. Set up a Zoom meeting using her Calendly or send her an email at

Calling All Consultants!

We are currently searching for consultants to coach our next Embracing Disruption cohort. The deadline to submit your proposals is July 31, 2024. To be considered, you must have successfully completed the Lifecycles 101 training (the next available training is June 13 & 14). Click the link below to learn more.

Embracing Disruption 3 Consultant RFQ

Meet The Last Cohort

We would like to highlight the incredible hard work and perseverance shown by our graduating Embracing Disruption cohort. These five organizations have showed courage, commitment, and creativity as they pushed to reinvigorate their systems, programs, and philosophies. As they graduate from the program, we cannot wait to see what they go on to accomplish.

Sheena Solomon is the Executive Director of The Gifford Foundation.

Embracing Disruption: 5 CNY Nonprofits Emerge with New Programs and Systems

On a snowy night in February, members from across the Central New York nonprofit community gathered together to celebrate the graduation of five organizations from The Gifford Foundation’s Embracing Disruption program and to hear updates about the impact of the capacity building initiative.

If you are considering whether or not Embracing Disruption would be a good fit for your organization, we encourage you to contact any of our past participants in order to hear their take on what the program experience was really like.

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