When a benefactor gives money to a non profit they are doing so for a good cause but sometimes their own will can get in the way of their outcomes. Non profits are beholden to all of the typical problems that a company can face as well as a whole new layer of problems and red tape. Jacob Lief, the founder and lead executive for the non profit Ubuntu Education Fund, has found out first hand how a well meaning benefactor can still hold back progress. As a result, Lief has used his company to pioneer a new method of money raising: the Ubuntu Model.
Jacob Lief and the rest of his board, including Andrew Rolfe, have been focused on reworking how their non profit functions at its most basic level. The goal, in the end, is to create a non profit that can operate on fewer but more effective and efficient donations. Jacob Lief knows firsthand just how hard it can be to comprehend that the money isn’t going where it should be. Lief spoke simply, “The money was flowing in but we weren’t changing people’s lives.’ This mindset led him to approach Andrew Rolfe and the rest of the board in order to unleash the Ubuntu Model.
What the Ubuntu Model is, in essence, is a new method of taking on higher value donations. The Ubuntu Model focuses on bringing in money from high net-worth individuals and solidified family foundations. Lief found that these two categories of donors were much more likely to allow their money to be spent at the will of the non-profit rather than try to stick their hands in on the process. While donors mean well, even their best efforts can lead to some problems. Consider money that has been earmarked specifically for staff funding. Now imagine that the non profit needs funds for new technology. The prior donation is untouchable and as a result the non profit suffers from top to bottom. The Ubuntu Model is seeking to change this process for the better, leading the Ubuntu Education Fund to a more effective future.