12 - 21 - 2015
Recently Latino Outdoors’ founder José Gonzales shared his passion for collective impact at the Outdoors Empowered Network summit. Collective impact is a model by which deeply entrenched societal problems are tackled through innovative collaborations across nongovernmental organizations, agencies, private enterprise, foundations, communities, and other stakeholders.
Though not without its flaws, collective impact is also a framework to think about giving and gratitude when you’re a nonprofit with no money to give, especially during the holiday season.
See, lately, we’ve come to realize that most of the Avarna Group’s good fortune is the direct result of people giving us the gift of “the good word.” And we mean that in the least religious sense. Our network of friends, colleagues, supporters, partners, and—yes—even competitors, have shared the news of our launch, links to our website, and our business cards . . . with no guaranteed return.
This holiday, we’ve been thinking about how to give in the nontraditional sense. When you’re stretched for funding, when you’re a nonprofit that’s making frantic calls to donors to bring in that last chunk of funding to meet budget, how can you be expected to give?
Here are some ways we have thought about giving in a time when we too are firmly in the red.
With the collective impact model, we give a little, and hope our beneficiaries will pay it forward through our networks until some support eventually boomerangs its way back to us. Trusting this process has been challenging. But it’s working!
So even if you’re stretched for funding, give the gift of your support this season. The more we can prop each other up, the more likely we will bring our shared vision of a more socially and environmentally just world into fruition.
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