Starting a New Affiliate

All “I Have A Dream” Cohorts are governed by local “I Have A Dream” Foundation licensed Affiliates.  In order to start a new Affiliate the following are the formation requirements: 

  • Recruiting a lead organizer(s)
  • Forming an Advisory Board/Expansion Committee to oversee and implement the planning process for a new Affiliate in identified community
  • Scheduling a site visit or call with another “I Have A Dream” Affiliate and if timing is right, attending the National Staff Conference (held every summer)
  • Scheduling a site visit for national “I Have A Dream” staff to meet with the Advisory Board/Expansion Committee and Program Site Administration
  • Identifying and qualifying the local school, housing authority site or community based-organization 
  • Completing a Partnership Analysis
  • Signing MOU with relevant school, housing authority and/or community partners 
  • Developing a projected 16 year budget
  • Identifying and securing funding sources (individuals, foundations, corporations, government)
  • Hiring an Executive Director (who hires additional program staff)

All new affiliates are subject to licensing and approval by the National “I Have A Dream” Foundation board of directors by completing a New Cohort Resolution Summary. This process requires the following: 

  • Securing cash in hand to cover at a minimum, the first three years of operation for the Program (and pledges and/or a plan to raise the remaining program costs), and all of the scholarship funds (with investment return projections as part of formula to meet commitment)
  • A full 3 year affiliate budget 
  • Articles of Incorporation / Bylaws 
  • IRS tax exempt letter
  • Insurance policies (D&O, Liability)
  • Post-Secondary Scholarship Assistance Policy
  • List of Board of Directors 
  • Executive Director and Program Director resumes 
  • Letters of agreements/MOU’s with local partners 
  • Local Program outline and Program Evaluation plan 
  • Signed acknowledgement of basic policies
  • Signed license agreement

Starting a New Cohort

In order to obtain approval to launch a new cohort, an existing affiliate must provide the following documentation included in this checklist to be included in a New Cohort Resolution Summary to be presented to the National Board of Directors.  This includes a plan to raise the funds for the new cohort. 

  • At least three years of operating costs shall be raised in advance of the cohort launch,
  • Funding, pledges or a plan to raise 100% of the projected scholarship funds needed to meet the commitment at graduation (with investment return projections as part of formula to meet scholarship projections), and a
  • Plan for raising the remaining budgeted program operating funds for the cohort.

The Board of Directors must then provide assurances in advance that they will meet these and all additional funding requirements for the Cohort. Funding arrangements, while the responsibility of the local Board of Directors, must be approved in writing by the national “I Have A Dream” Foundation.

Operating an “I Have A Dream” Foundation Affiliate

In addition to paying an annual national licensing fee and complying with national network policies and quality standards, “I Have A Dream” Affiliates must provide the following each year, at the time of license renewal: 

  1. Budget vs. actual spending for the past year
  2. Organizational Chart
  3. Staff Roster
  4. Annual audit or EOY Financial Statements, which includes scholarship investments.*

*These financial statements must be supported by third party documents, such as bank or brokerage firm statements, but they do not need to be formally audited.