Exclusive Interview With Global Impact CEO, Scott Jackson

Global Impact began 60 years ago as, “a federation that allowed for international non-profits such as Save, Care, and World Vision to be featured in large scale giving campaigns with the federal government and the private sector.” They now raise funds through campaigns and through the workplace. Global Impact’s mission is to, “build partnerships and resources for the world’s most vulnerable people.” Their vision is to, “grow global philanthropy with meaningful impact.”

Global Impact has distributed over $1.7 billion dollars to over 12 thousand charities around the world. “Being a receiver of funds and having the trust of donors around the world, to be able to receive those funds and distribute them, has been very important to us,” expressed Jackson. Global Impact also works with the Global Health Council and the Hilton Foundation Laureates. “We really feel like our strength is about what we do to help the non-profits that are on the front lines, whether it’s raising visibility, raising funds, or supporting their capacity capability,” said Jackson.

Global Impact was recognized at the Comic Relief US Implementation Partner for the Red Nose Day Campaign. Comic Relief, which is based in the United Kingdom, started Red Nose 25 years ago as a way to raise awareness and funding for the world’s most vulnerable people all while having fun. This was the first year it was brought to the United States. “Red Nose Day is really an example of how Global Impact works. We were not very visible...but we were the behind the scenes, partnership coordinator. Our responsibility was to get the word out and to get the tool kits out so that companies, trade associations, schools, constituencies, communities could all be involved across America and doing something funny for money,” explained Jackson.

In terms of making the world more resilient, Jackson sees the answer as threefold. “One, is that we all have to continue to care about the world...Secondly, is that we all have to think about the work of poverty alleviation, much more broadly than we have before...Finally, we have to think about not helping people but instead creating the conditions for them, to help themselves, whether that is in economic prosperity or education or good health, so that they can reach their full potential.”

When asked about what will be needed for an organization to be successful in 2030, Jackson answered, “ they need to be able to partner, that no organization regardless of how large they are, will be able to do their work without partnerships in the countries that they serve, as well as partnerships globally, in terms of raising resources and visibility and developing programs. Also just as the internet was so important at the beginning of 2000, I believe that social media and social engagement, creating communities through social media will be very important in the next 15 years. Finally, how we measure our success will be critical.”

Here at Ideagen, we find innovation game changing when it comes to solving some of the world’s most vexing issues. We asked Jackson how he sees innovation impacting equity in the future. Jackson said, “Innovation will be essential for realizing the breakout strategies that will indeed achieve equity across the global health and development spectrum.”

Our last Ideagen Summit focused on America and the World in 2030. We first asked Jackson what he saw as the most important challenges in the future. Jackson said there are three challenges that he sees. “One of those is how we narrow the gap between those that have economic opportunity and those that do not... The second is making real progress on is the state of women and girls...You can’t leave 50% of the world’s population behind and expect to achieve any of these goals that we’ve talked about. Finally, I think that we all have to think about how we’re supporting the next generation. What are we leaving behind for them, what frameworks for prosperity, what frameworks for engaging with each other, for being able to be a part of a global community?”

We then asked Jackson where he sees Global Impact in 2030. Jackson answered, “Ideally, there wouldn’t be a need for us...But, short of that, my hope for global impact...is really three-fold. One is, how do we continue to support visibility and giving in the workplace because all of us now are engaged with our charities in the workplace...Secondly, is how do we continue to raise significant dollars to support the non-profits that we work with? Thirdly, is how do we democratize giving so that everyone can do their part in changing the world.”

Jackson sees cross-sector collaboration as extremely important. “First of all, the non-profit sector and the public sector cannot raise the funds... without the private sector...Secondly, is that the private sector, in its efforts to create value, cannot do that without having attention to the social fabric of society...Thirdly, I think that cross-collaboration is so important because without it, you don’t find the opportunity to have partnership,” relayed Jackson.

The three key lessons that Jackson has learned that have the potential to change the world are these, “None of the organizations that I have had the privilege to be involved with can do it alone...These problems and issues around the world cannot be achieved by simply external forces...Finally...there are too few goals or if you will, tools for individuals to help them become strategic philanthropists.”

Global Impact will soon be launching the “Growfund” a personal investment account, which will essentially be an investment account for philanthropy. Global Impact, changing the world!

08/31/2015 05:58 pm ET