Program Frequently Asked Questions

You can be from anywhere in the world and work with us. If you can lead, or wish to lead any kind of charitable program for your community, or you simply want to learn more about community-led development and how to run a nonprofit, Cultivate may be able to help.

We work with people who care deeply about their community and have a vision for their community to be stronger and healthier. We support people who are passionate, driven and dedicated to making their vision a reality. We train people who are willing and ready to make their efforts more powerful and successful by working together with Cultivate and others.

Choose the tier or program option you are interested in joining. Click on the button to enroll right away, or get more information. 

Cohorts are closed until the start of a new one. If you sign up to be notified of a cohort start date, you will receive emails from us about 8-12 weeks before the start of the next cohort. At that time, you will have a short application form to complete. If you are interested in applying for a scholarship, we will also send you an application to fill out for scholarships.

The organizational learners program is uniquely built for each organization. If you are interested in this option, please connect with us to discuss it further. 

We will help you to grow as a leader and have a healthy, successful community program or nonprofit organization. This is achieved through three program components:

As a trainee, you will learn about key nonprofit topics such as leadership, community development, program design, communications, fundraising, financial management, and impact measurement. We can help you build a strong foundation for your program so that you can achieve greater success. The training is done through online lessons, video and audio lectures, homework, and hands-on activities.

We connect our trainees with other community leaders and community allies so they can learn from one another. We also offer personal and group coaching sessions for our trainees to receive more support and resources for their community work and charitable organizations.

Though we do not fund a trainee's program or fundraise for them, we offer support and training. Our curriculum and coaching sessions include fundraising help, and we also offer trainees resources such as recommendations to fiscal sponsors, grant announcements, and access to grant research tools (currently, access to these research tools is only offered to our cohort members).

Cultivate does not give financial funding to trainees or their programs. Though we help train you how to fundraise, we do not do the work for you. We do not help you find donors.

Yes. There is a fee for our training programs. This fee helps us cover our costs to offer you the program.

There are four levels of our program you may choose to join. To learn more about the levels, read here. We only offer scholarships to our Independent Learners, Engaged Learners and Cohort Learners.

If you are unable to pay this fee, please apply for a scholarship. We will help you through the following process:

  1. Find others who can sponsor you. Ask people in your community, faith group, school, workplace, and even your family. People can make contributions to Cultivate to help you cover the program fees. Learn more about this option here.
  2. You may apply for a scholarship through Cultivate for the remaining amount you are unable to raise through sponsorships. Scholarship funds are limited and are not guaranteed, but we will do everything we can to help you get the funds you need.

Your primary coach is Elaine Tymchak, Cultivate's Executive Director. Elaine has over 18 years of experience in nonprofit management, fundraising, and international development. She received a Masters in International Development and is currently working towards a Doctorate of Ministry in Social Transformation. Elaine has worked with leaders and organizations domestically and internationally long before starting Cultivate.

You may occasionally engage with other staff members, volunteers, and board members when coaching is necessary on a topic of their expertise.

During your coaching calls, you will identify the challenges you are facing in your work and we will help you create a plan for overcoming those challenges. We also answer questions about the training and help you achieve your personal and professional goals connected to your role as a community leader.

You can see samples of our training here to give you a good idea of how our curriculum is presented. You can also learn what each course offers by reading here.

If you are interested in the Independent Learners program or the Engaged Learners program, you must first pay for the program before you can begin. We cannot offer refunds, as you will have access to the full content right away.

If you apply for a scholarship at any level of the program and are accepted, you will be expected to complete the training in the time frame laid out by Cultivate to honor your scholarship.

If you apply for the Cohort or Organizational Learners programs, there is no refund available. We do not offer refunds once you have been accepted, as we have a limited number of spots available in the cohort and for organizational teams each year. First, start the application process so we can get to know you and ensure you understand what the program is and what it is not. Start by filling out the interest form and set up a phone call or online call with our staff. During this call, we will explain to you what our program offers. If you are still interested in the program, there is an application form you will be required to fill out.

If you are uncertain about starting our program, please contact us to talk more! We would love to answer any of your questions before you get started.

We understand that many community leaders across the developing world, and even within the United States, struggle to have the technology which is a necessity for any kind of community work. If you do not have access to any computer, it will be difficult to complete our program by just using a phone, though you can read all our courses on your phone, or by printing the course documents. 

We make our program as accessible as possible for those who are under-resourced:

  • All courses can be read using a computer, tablet, or smartphone. Some of the homework or suggested activities are best done on a computer. 
  • All trainees have the option to download the course readings for offline access. We provide documents which can be read on computers and smartphones while offline. However, some course lessons include videos and audio lectures which require an internet connection to be completed. Whenever possible, we provide transcripts as well.
  • Whenever possible, we try to ensure our courses require the lowest amount of data possible to download or access online.

Cultivate was established on our founder's Christian faith and is led by a team who works from our faith and spirituality, core values, and worldview. We do this work because we believe in equity, justice, empowerment, and that fighting against poverty, oppression, racism, and marginalization are values worth living out and are not exclusive to any one religion.

However, Cultivate's programs are not faith-based. We do not incorporate religious components in our programming, though religious examples, practices, and worldviews may be included in our training curriculum to make it relevant to the diversity of our trainees.

Cultivate staff, board members, volunteers, interns, donors, and trainees are free to practice and express their religious beliefs through their personal communication and interactions with one another but are not allowed to incorporate it into Cultivate’s official programs.

When Cultivate raises funds to offer scholarships, living stipends, or other support to our trainees, Cultivate will apply designated donations for approved projects solely for purposes that align with our mission. For the avoidance of doubt, faith-based organizations and people of faith may be eligible to participate in Cultivate’s programs and receive donations from Cultivate for activities that meet the following criteria:

  • The activities align with Cultivate’s mission and values of social good.
  • Do not provide religious doctrinal instruction.
  • Do not require constituents to adhere to the organization’s faith-based beliefs in order to participate in the programs.

Cultivate will not financially support projects that require exposure, adherence to, or conversion to religious doctrine. Cultivate trainees and their projects have the full freedom to conduct and participate in endeavors that align with their religious beliefs, and fully express their beliefs through action and words.