social capital noun. the value of our social networks & relationships

Social Capital: What is it and Why is it important?

Published by Leah Mulrenan on

Catching up with family and friends this time of year, work always comes up. Everyone usually knows that I work in nonprofit – but might not know what my organization does. There are so many incredible nonprofits, but SCI is just so unique. I love telling the story of SCI and encouraging others to be a part of it!

At SCI Social Capital Inc. we build social capital. But what is social capital? Even if you aren’t familiar with the words on their own, you are probably familiar with the idea.

Your social capital comes from the people you know, the organizations and groups you are a part of, all of your relationships. These connections are valuable to your success, happiness, and health. At SCI, your gift today builds the social capital of the individuals and communities we serve.

Why Do We Build

Social Capital?

Everyone in a community has something to contribute. We can do more when we work together. By building social capital, SCI looks to bring people of diverse backgrounds together, create connections across differences.  We work to build communities with high social capital, where everyone has an equal opportunity to thrive. By giving any amount to SCI, you are showing your investment in this vision.  

How Do We Build Social Capital?

There wasn’t a manual on how to do this! For 20 years, SCI has listened to what communities are saying they need. Through conversations, we work to develop solutions to address those needs. Here are some examples of what we’re doing:


Being involved is good for you at any age. For young people, especially, it could be life-changing. SCI provides youth leadership programs at no cost, and in some cases, paid internship opportunities for high school students. 

A donation to SCI supports growing our youth programming, like our LET program and Youth Grant Pitch Contest, putting youth in the driver’s seat of creating change!


Volunteer service is a great way to build social capital- for both the volunteer and the community they are serving! In addition to SCI’s volunteer programs in Woburn, the SCI AmeriCorps Program increases volunteer opportunities across Greater Boston. 

SCI AmeriCorps members serve with SCI and partner organizations. They create and grow volunteer programs serving youth and the community.

With a gift to SCI you are supporting the individuals that make the commitment to serve, and you are supporting the volunteers they will work with!


How do you make connections? You can find an event that interests you and go! We have watched countless connections be made over the years at our events like the Summer Concerts at Horn Pond or Worldfest. 

At our Juneteenth event this spring,  we saw student leaders make a meaningful connections with a professional in their field of interest! 

Your support will help expand community events, like Juneteenth, and inspire more connections across the community!

Last week, David talked about the ripple effects of our work. Each connection can spark an idea, a relationship, and more that will improve our communities. The ripple effects of what we do will continue to be felt, and you can show your support by giving to SCI today! Let’s build social capital together!

p.s. We are on a mission to raise $30,000 by the end of the year.  Thank you to everyone who has supported us in this campaign! Now that we’re thinking about our social capital – do you think you can think about who in your life might be interested! Share this message with them!

p.p.s. I wanted to take a moment to personally thank you for being a part of our SCI community! SCI has been a huge part of my life and my family’s. Including this November when my 3-year-old son had his first experience volunteering! Seeing what SCI brings to our community motivates me every day to encourage others to be involved!

I’m generally the one behind the camera for SCI’s photos, but this year my husband grabbed the camera at Juneteenth- I think the smiles say it all!