Who We Are
The Center for Strategic Partnerships builds bridges between L.A. County and its philanthropic partners. With relationships in both sectors, a deep understanding of their respective cultures, and a passion for making connections, we help to unleash the considerable resources, talent, and influences of these two unique sectors to transform the lives of children, youth, and families.
The Center is not a funding agency. All Center initiatives involve a shared agenda between the County and philanthropy. We do not seek funding for community-based organizations or projects outside of our public-private initiatives.
What We Do
Our involvement in cross-sector collaborations spans a continuum:
At one end of the spectrum, we go deep, helping to determine the who, what, and how of an innovation that our partners are seeking together. In these cases, we might help shape ideas, draft proposals, and secure commitments. Often we roll up our sleeves with County partners to implement the systems change, bringing our private sector partners into the space as thought partners and co-creators.
At the other end, we act as a matchmaker and support our partners in building their own collaborations. We identify issues and projects ripe for collaboration, broker relationships, bridge communication gaps, provide technical assistance to both sectors, and help our partners learn how to work more effectively together.
Regardless of where our work falls on this continuum, the Center enables each of our partners to do what they do best, leveraging the investments of all to create greater and more sustainable impact.
The Center for Strategic Partnerships is a fundamental and profound partner in advancing First 5 L.A.’s goal of ensuring all kids enter kindergarten ready to succeed in school and life. Because of the Center, we are better able to make progress in achieving that ultimate goal on behalf of L.A.’s kids and families.
We are not a gatekeeper of public-private partnerships. If we were to be a funnel, we would be limiting the potential for growth. Instead, we foster the will to create public-private partnerships, and we will help to build them when we can. If partners are engaging in initiatives beyond that and outside of us, more power to them. I truly believe that we get better outcomes this way.
The Center illustrates that when people come together, share their views, and align their funding, they can really make a difference. There has been a real shift in the culture at the County with respect to philanthropy, and a real shift in how philanthropy sees itself in relationship to the County, as a result of the Center’s work.
The Center has brought a greater degree of racial equity to public/private partnerships by allowing for more fairness in access and opportunity.