I’ve come to discover a consonance between what matters to me and the work I have been privileged to undertake. This has always been with and among people in nonprofit organizations - as a well-regarded trainer, peripatetic consultant, and fitful volunteer – and now as an author.
I have completed a book that will help you strengthen your nonprofit organization before and after you submit your funding proposal for consideration or competition. So the wandering that has marked my life is now largely confined to what happens in my brain. At my age, this is a good thing.
"Skillfully written and highly needed, I suspect this book will have dog-eared pages because of the amount of time you’ll read the information while putting it to great use."
"...what you get here is invaluable practical advice distilled from a distinguished career as a fundraiser, grant maker and trusted advisor to nonprofits of all types and sizes," along with "... delights in challenging conventional wisdom..."
"The sound advice in this book is offered with candor and humor and challenges grantseekers to understand what they are trying to accomplish and why it’s important before dashing off in a chase of funding for program activities."
Well, my book is written for those of you connected to public benefit organizations under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code. It features exceptional strategy for competing to keep your nonprofit in business in tough times.
a.) Build the core funding proposal to tell your organization's story.
b.) Refine it every time you seek out diversified financial support.
c.) Add uncommon strength to your nonprofit as you do this.
d.) Payoffs? Strong organization inside. Strong proposal outside. Muscle and Money for your Mission-driven Nonprofit.
This Toolkit goes to the heart of my unconventional approach to dig up resources for your nonprofit. Feel free to reproduce and make every tool in the kit your very own. Then tell your organization's story like no other!
"So, if you come to believe that change makes sense, feel free to reproduce and use every item you find here to stimulate collective action and create allies among others in and around your nonprofit."
Challenging Nonprofits To Clarify & Document Why They Exist Rather Than Describing What They Do
I first learned about money and nonprofits as a Career-conditional Federal employee when stumbling into into the Great Society’s War On Poverty (RIP) all those years ago. We funded the very first local antipoverty groups known as Community Action agencies throughout the Midwest.
I’ve remained in the public and private nonprofit sectors ever since. Much of my time - initially with The Grantsmanship Center, and then on my own - involved designing, conducting and delivering two to five day workshops throughout the country.
The diverse people who showed up for these well regarded sessions shared in common the quest for resources, predominantly grants, for nonprofit organizations with which they were affiliated. And I got to help them strengthen how they went about this, while continuously learning about our nonprofit arena in the process.
My workshop experiences led me back to once again working with those in the nonprofit sector with money to give.
• Several years as a Program Officer recommending grants at The California Community Foundation in Los Angeles. I also directed that organization’s Nonprofit Resource Center to provide resources for prospective applicants for foundation funding.
• Consulting with The Lannan Foundation in Santa Fe, NM in its Indigenous Communities Program
• Training prospective applicants for Sacramento, CA based Sierra Health Foundation funding and later reviewing proposals for foundation funding.
There are three parts to my principle take-away from this work across the breadth of the nonprofit sector:
1. Nothing less than a resilient nonprofit presenting a strong funding proposal makes sense in these difficult & hyper-competitive times for pursuing resources.
2. And that such a combination remains elusive for many organizations.
3. And that it need not be elusive for your organization.
These realizations coupled with the real life discoveries from working face to face with people in nonprofits in turn led me to carve out an uncommon strength-based strategy for pursuing resources for your organization. Where before this approach came to mark my training and consulting, it now forms the basis for my work as an author of the book you see prominently featured hereabouts. I believe the sub-title of that book, securing your nonprofit’s assets from the inside out, sets the stage for moving from my story to yours.