Public, Society Benefit

MOVE THE MOUNTAIN LEADERSHIP CENTER INC

Building Community To End Poverty

aka Circles USA

Albuquerque, NM

Mission

Circles® provides opportunities that inspire and equip families and communities to resolve poverty and thrive. Our mission has always been to inspire and equip families and communities to thrive and resolve poverty. We believe strongly that responsibility for both poverty and prosperity rests not only in the hands of individuals, but also with societies, institutions, and communities. Today, 70 plus communities in 21 states and parts of Canada have joined the Circles network. We're inspired by the work that occurs at each location and by the passion and commitment of both our volunteers and participants. Their stories of success demonstrate what we've believed all along – when communities come together and the right techniques are utilized, great change can occur.

Ruling Year

2014

Founder

Mr. Scott Miller

Executive Director

Ms. Jamie Haft

Main Address

4233 Trinity Place NW

Albuquerque, NM 87107 USA

Keywords

Circles, Circles USA, Allies, Circle Leaders

EIN

42-1474973

 Number

1260117735

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Leadership Development (W70)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Social Media

Blog

Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

To inspire and equip communities to end poverty: We as a nation must commit to eradicating poverty. To that end, the Circles USA board has made a commitment to bringing the Circles approach to 10% of all U.S. counties and major cities within 10 years.
The communities we support must commit to design and implement plans to reduce the poverty rate by at least 10% within 10 years.
We must engage with the business community and together insist that government activates the phantom workforce. The first obstacle is to eliminate the Cliff Effect disincentives that prevent people who are otherwise willing and able to work from advancing in their current jobs or seeking better-paying jobs (the phantom workforce).

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Circles

Where we work

Our Results

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one. These quantitative program results are self-reported by the organization, illustrating their committment to transparency, learning, and interest in helping the whole sector learn and grow.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Earned Income

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Economically disadvantaged, low-income, and poor people

Related program

Circles

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context notes

The primary indicator of progress in Circles is an increase in earned income. On average, Circle Leaders earned 39% more income after six months, 54% more after one year, and 75% more in 18 months.

Education

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Economically disadvantaged, low-income, and poor people

Related program

Circles

Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context notes

Circle Leaders often pursue education and training to earn more income. In 2018 Circle Leaders gained increases in certifications (24%), four-year degrees (16%) and graduate degrees (27%)

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

Our goal is to bring Circles to 300 of the 3007 US Counties, and 30 of the 297 cities with populations of 100,000 or more by 2026.

Like any 1,000-mile journey, there must be achievable benchmarks along the way. Given the potential of the 10% tipping point theory, we have set the short-term goal at reducing poverty rates in our targeted communities by 10% within 10 years. While daunting, we believe it represents a SMART goal for communities: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound.

To accomplish this, we must have three things in place:

1. A commitment from community champions to reduce poverty by 10%;

2. A theory of change to reduce poverty and business plans to do so;

3. New resources to staff the effort.

Circle Leaders move out of poverty by surrounding them with a support network of dedicated peers and community volunteers known as Allies who support their economic stability plan.

What is unique about Circles is that it partners people from all socioeconomic backgrounds together to help increase the prosperity of individuals, families and the community.

In the process, Circle Leaders, gain a greater awareness and understanding of issues related to poverty, empowering the community as a whole with the knowledge necessary to end poverty.

Circles works with existing organizations and is part of the national Circles® movement to end poverty. Circles® works to build community resources, relationships, and understanding to bridge the gap between poverty and overall well-being. At Circles, we envision a community where everyone has enough resources, relationships, and hope to thrive.

The Tipping Point & Circles USA's Role
Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have found that when just 10 percent of the population holds an unshakable belief, their belief will always be adopted by the majority of the society.

“When the number of committed opinion holders is below 10 percent, there is no visible progress in the spread of ideas. It would literally take the amount of time comparable to the age of the universe for this size group to reach the majority. Once that number grows above 10 percent, the idea spreads like flame," said SCNARC Director Boleslaw Szymanski, the Claire and Roland Schmitt Distinguished Professor at Rensselaer.

Inspired by this provocative research, The Circles USA Board of Directors has approved a major, high-impact strategic plan to achieve a 10% tipping point in the United States to eradicate poverty! By 2021, we plan to have Circles in 10% of all counties (300 of 3000 counties) and 30 of the 300 major cities.

Circles USA will engage with communities interested in the tipping point by supporting these four stage of development:

ASSESSMENT—Asking questions: “Is Circles right for our community? Do we have the leadership and resources to start a Circles program in our community?"
CIRCLES IN THE MAKING—Getting started: If your community is ready and willing to start Circles, you will enter into a planning agreement with Circles USA (CUSA) to lay the foundation.
CIRCLES DEMONSTRATION—Taking action: You are now implementing Circles to support families out of poverty, collecting data, and assessing outcomes. You are asking, “How is it working in our community? Do we like the results we are getting? Have we been able to secure resources to sustain and grow the Circles program?"
SCALING TO A TIPPING POINT—Moving forward: You are happy with the results and can see the potential of growing Circles in your community to end poverty.
As Circle Leader graduate Rebecca says, “We have changed our lives so profoundly that we will not move back into poverty again."

How many more children do we have to raise in poverty before it is gone? How many more families will we let live with the constant anxiety of not having enough money to meet their basic needs? It's overwhelming and we can end the suffering so that everyone has a real opportunity to get out of poverty and thrive.

The time has come to intentionally pursue the end of poverty in our nation, in our lifetime!

Increasing the number of member communities

Percent of members pursuing the new Tipping Point goal

Earned income increases for families enrolled in member organizations

Our goal is to be in 10% of all US counties (300) and 10% of all metro communities with 100K population or more (30) We are currently in 68 counties and 20 metro communities Earned income gains for all chapters is being calculated via new data system.

How We Listen

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

Source: Self-reported by organization

the feedback loop
check_box We shared information about our current feedback practices.
How is the organization collecting feedback?
We regularly collect feedback through: electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), community meetings/town halls, phone calls or emails.
How is the organization using feedback?
We use feedback to: to identify and remedy poor client service experiences, to identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, to make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, to inform the development of new programs/projects, to identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, to strengthen relationships with the people we serve.
With whom is the organization sharing feedback?
We share feedback with: the people we serve, our staff, our board, our funders, our community partners.
What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?
It is difficult to: we don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback.

External Reviews

Awards

Breaking the Cycle Award 2019

Tsuha Foundation

Financials

MOVE THE MOUNTAIN LEADERSHIP CENTER INC

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Need more info?

FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

See what's included

Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

No

Organizational Demographics

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? This organization has voluntarily shared information to answer this important question and to support sector-wide learning. GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 01/27/2020

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & Ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender Identity
Male, Not Transgender (Cisgender)
Sexual Orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability Status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & Ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender Identity
Female, Not Transgender (Cisgender)
Sexual Orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability Status
Person without a disability

Race & Ethnicity

Gender Identity

Sexual Orientation

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity Strategies

Last updated: 01/27/2020

Policies and practices developed in partnership with Equity in the Center, a project that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems within the social sector to increase racial equity. Learn more

Data

done
We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
done
We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
done
We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
done
We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
done
We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.

Policies and processes

done
We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
done
We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
done
We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
done
We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.