From Open Impact
Authors: Adene Sacks, Heather McLeod Grant, and Kate Wilkinson
How is the current economic and political environment impacting the capacity building needs of social-change leaders, nonprofits, networks, and movements? How are funders responding to these changing needs, and how can they better support this work going forward?Read more
Vu Le of the blog Nonprofit with Balls talks capacity building:
"Funders have been trying to help [nonprofits] develop, by teaching them to fish. We have a long-held belief that in order to build the capacity of organizations, we must teach them important skills such as financial management, evaluation, board governance, HR, etc. If we just throw money at them—give them a fish, so to speak—they’ll never build their infrastructure...
"What if a person’s skill is not fishing, but building houses? Let’s say someone’s an amazing carpenter. We keep insisting that this carpenter learn to fish, so the carpenter spends half his time doing that. Because of that, fewer houses are getting built, and he’s still pretty much a mediocre fisherman who feels horrible and guilty that he can’t fish as well as others...
Supporting Grantee Capacity: Strengthening Effectiveness Together looks at how funders approach building capacity with grantees. Through examples from foundations ranging in size, mission, and geography, it explores various strategies for capacity building and the types of awareness that funders can choose to incorporate in decision making to facilitate informed, thoughtful judgments about strengthening organizations.Read more
Nonprofits don’t have discrete ambitions. They want to quickly grow their seed money so they can expand programs that have both a measurable and meaningful impact. It’s one way philanthropists define “scale.”
But it is often a lot easier said than done.Read more