Achieving Sustainability

Bring home the bacon!

Sustaining our Cafe programs is a high priority for the network, but doing so, requires strategy, knowledge and tools. With the help of Howard Rutherford (U South Florida) and Carol Conine (Conine Associates) we have roughed out a plan for going forward with professional development in how to raise funds from private and corporate foundation.

We envision two components of this professional development series:

1) Offering several webinars exploring the mechanics of seeking private or corporate funding. These might include exploring the world of private and corporate foundation grant opportunities, learning how to make personal connections with the foundations of interest, and how to write strong proposals that address the foundation’s interests.

2) Writing proposals individually or collaboratively. Participants may find common ground with other Members in writing collaborative proposals or individual proposals with common elements. The webinars would be followed up with monthly virtual meetings, during which participants check in to report on their progress, and provide help to or seek help from others in the Network.

Webinar Topics:
The proposed schedule for the strand is the following:

Week of Mar 3: Webinar on How to Identify and Research Prospects

Week of Mar 17: Developing a Case Statement and Building the Connections

Week of April 23: Elements of a Strong Proposal: Tips and Tricks of the Trade

Week of May 5 – Panel of Funders’ Share Their Perspectives

After the webinar series, we will schedule once a month virtual meetings for the group to convene and report on progress, challenges and successes.

This series will launch the week of March 3. Complete the doodle poll by February 26 to indicate your availability.

Completing this needs assessment survey by Feb 28 will help the convenor’s better understand your programs and your needs.
A valuable outcome of this strand will be an archive of stories or “case studies” that would illuminate successful strategies—and pitfalls—of fundraising. These could be an inspiration and guidance on best practices for adaptation by Members of the Network to local circumstances. A second outcome is engaging anyone in the Network ready to go forward with targeting a particular source of funds in their region and supporting each others’ efforts with constructive feedback. The process and outcome of each such effort could become a story for the archive, and thus become further inspiration for others.

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