Workshops, Trainings, and Convenings
With a talented staff as one of our greatest resources we are able to listen and regularly engage with grantseekers and members of the community. We confer and partner with our counterparts at other funding organizations and local municipalities. We assist in facilitating or convening diverse voices; listening teaches us a lot, especially if we pay attention to the patterns that emerge.
What do we hear? That board members are sometimes uncertain about their roles. That groups often want to align over shared interests, but need guidance. That there is a need for prepared and diverse voices in our nonprofit leadership. For all of these reasons we embrace trainings and convenings as key elements of our work. The following are examples of some of this type of work. This is by no means a conclusive list, but instead offers a sneak peek into this type of reactive work that we do.
Announcing the Digital Collaboration Workshop
The Gifford Foundation is working with The CNY Community Foundation, Mindflower Studio, and MXD Arts to provide a webinar series and consultant services to the CNY nonprofit community. The goal is to improve board development and teach new strategies for working remotely.
Board Development Series
The goal of this four-session series is to assist nonprofits with evolving boards to maximize their knowledge and potential for building strong, effective boards. Since 2012 we’ve held five successful series of workshops across a three-county area. Sessions address roles and responsibilities, group dynamics, advocacy, and diversity. With the recent completion of the fifth series, over 300 individuals from 90 organizations will have been trained. Each session addresses a different aspect important to developing a dynamic and engaged board and is designed to enhance group interactions. Throughout the sessions organizations share experiences and become more familiar with the work being done in Central New York.
We do not hold this series annually, instead focusing on when organizations are most in need of this type of support. If you’d like to be kept in the loop for when we announce another series, contact Lindsay McClung.
Convenings and Alliances
The Foundation is open to bringing together groups who want to convene or discuss a shared topic. In the past we have both operated as hands on facilitators as well as a convener – allowing organizations to share a space and explore options. For example, The Refugee Alliance, helping local animal rescue organizations discuss volunteer efforts, TNT facilitation, etc.
In keeping with our commitment to be involved in our community and active contributors in local conversations, we participate in a variety of alliances and task forces. For example, we are active with Work Train and the Early Childhood Alliance, among others.
Federal Grant Administration
Since 2004 the Foundation has partnered with the US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of NY to administer Project Safe Neighborhood, a Department of Justice grant on community-wide violence intervention and prevention. Over the 15 years nearly $4,000,000 has been distributed through these federal grants. Our role has changed over the years, moving from first a true fiscal agent who was primarily responsible for accepting and disbursing funds as required, to now one of authentic partnership and project management. Through these grants we work with the Syracuse City Police Department, the Salvation Army, Onondaga County, the John F. Finn Institute, and many more.
In 2018 we expanded our role in Project Safe Neighborhood grant administration to include a separate partnership with the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of NY.
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