WE DID IT!
We did it! Grant Search Training and Project Development was just the beginning, and was made possible with partial funding support from Calaveras Community Foundation. The Volunteer Center and the Valley Springs Area Business Association came together with Donna Wilson of Sierra Non-Profit Support and nationally recognized grant writing trainer, Harvey Chess to design two 2-day workshops aimed at empowering us all to take another step forward in search of project development, community partners and the funding necessary to answer the needs of our communities.
Two dates were set in April 2013, and over 50 motivated community members attended, representing 33 local efforts and general overall interest in making a difference. The classes were first come, first served and filled up fast.
This was only the beginning. We went on to hold workshops on preparing a budget, online funding searches, and general "Next Step" conversations. - where do we go from here.
Many of our non-profit organizations are underfunded and struggling to meet the increasing demands on their services. Local agencies provide services with major community impacts and, therefore, must be considered as full-mission partners with our County efforts. Foundations and private community support are a substantial piece of an agency's financially diverse plan - adding to the notion that finding ways to work together makes sense.
Together we will continue to learn when it makes sense to seek grants, discover how to know when the organization has the capacity necessary to develop effective and persuasive funding proposals, and how the actual grant-seeking effort can measurably strengthen the organization itself.
Through these trainings, we continue to develop the foundation necessary for Calaveras non-profit economic empowerment. Business owners understand that these agencies impact the economic reality of our friends, our neighbors and their customers. All citizens served through these various countywide agencies and grassroots efforts develop a measure of extended resilience as they receive help to build on their own resources, and then continue to give back to their communities. Everyone matters.
Moving Forward: We also created a network of community members who understand and recognize the value of true collaborative work, and who are willing and able to assist others with grant writing support/mentoring, editing and/or the online searching for suitable funding sources.
This is an opportunity for all of us to learn together, mentor each other, share resources and do great things for our communities. Together we can move forward, identify the gaps in our individual skill sets, and schedule the needed workshops.
Thanks to Russ Thomas and the Angels Camp Gun Club for providing a venue for the initial two 2-day workshops. Additionally, we are grateful to the Calaveras County Office of Education for providing, and continuing to make available the Angels Camp facility that includes a large training room and computer lab.
Participants attended this two-day training program presented by Harvey Chess, who has a powerful, unconventional and refreshing approach to developing funding proposals, with core application/practice by participants. This is what some of the attendees had to say about the experience:
If you'd like to help these agencies find the funding that will help them do what they do better, please contact the Volunteer Center. Let's go "Mining for Money!"
The Volunteer Center
staff is on hand to answer any questions. Please don't hesitate to