Thursday, May 15, 2008

Two more courses scheduled

The courses for the fall semester are now finalized. The first two were listed in my last post. Here are descriptions of the other two. No you can't register just yet but
Oct. 9, 2008
Marketing Your Nonprofit -Alice Lutz
Learn the basics of Marketing through the exploration of steps involved. Using case studies, participants will go through an entire process including the evaluation. Learn the components of an effective marketing plan. Explore the essentials of “brand awareness”. Outline strategies you can implement to increase the overall image of your nonprofit. Course Objectives: Discuss marketing concepts, terminology, and methods. identify target markets, create messaging statements for various markets, outline marketing plan steps, outline, Identify generally accepted methods for evaluation.
and then:

Oct. 10, 2008
Leading Volunteers to Success -Alice Lutz
Learn the basics of Leadership within the nonprofit sector and how to strategize to set your nonprofit up for success within the “volunteer” sector. Through the exploration of basic leadership model(s) within the nonprofit sector, participants will then explore the volunteer management skills necessary to insure succession planning and leadership transition(s) for nonprofit sustainability. Finally, participants will explore and define the action steps necessary to take back to their particular organizations.

Both classes will be taught by Alice Lutz.
Alice brings 20+ years of experience as a facilitator and strategic business partner to her company Oxygen: Business Planning & Development. Highlights include: project management, comprehensive marketing and communication plans, corporate solicitation, and educational workshops for nonprofits Executives as well as key volunteers. Ms. Lutz is a graduate of the Advanced Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership Program with the Duke University of Continuing Studies and is a Certified Fundraising Executive. Please visit for a more comprehensive look at services and experience. Alice has the talent and tools to create dynamic learning in others, as well as the skills to manage multi-faceted projects and events on her own. Oxygen: Listens and provides workable solutions.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The First Classes are scheduled!!

The first classes are on the books. You can't register yet but we will have Duke training on the Outer Banks this year. Here are the particulars:
Thursday, October 23- 9:00am

The Dynamics of ED Board Relations - Don Wells

The roles and responsibilities of the ED and the board can become complicated – so complicated that resolving territorial rights can consume all an agency’s energy. This course helps sort out the roles, responsibilities and potential strengths of this unique, yet vital, partnership.

And then we get:

Thursday, November 20 9:00am

Grant Proposals: Planning for Positive Results - Amy Montgomery

Does “grant writing” sound like a daunting task? Are you or could you be a grant writer? A grant writer is a passionate person on a mission to solve a problem or an unmet need. Successful grant writers know that writing is the easy part, especially if you have someone who will edit your work. Your passion for your work is your number one tool to get funded. You know your target audience, what they need and how to help. With some solid research, careful and realistic planning, strong and strategic relationships, and a good editor, you can be a successful grant writer. Participants will finish this personalized course with a checklist and roadmap, definite do’s and definite don’ts, and completely convinced that they have what it takes to be a successful grant writer.

Some other minor changes. New layout for the blog and a Calendar page on the website. Check it out and let me know what you think.


Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Grant Proposal is in

Yeah. I just dropped of the grant proposal to the Outer Banks Community Foundation, an original and 5 copies courtesy of Coastal Impressions. You can see it online. It was published using Google Docs so the formatting leaves a bit to be desired. See if you like my writing style. We asked for enough money to provide ten scholarships to 4 courses in each of 2 semesters. Total cost $3,920.

I haven't done a lot of grant writing though I have drafted a few. It is always hard job, trying to present a strong case that both meets the goals of the granting agency and accomplishes your agencies mission at the same time. This application seemed to be a pretty good fit. Still you never know.
Now its time to get some classes scheduled.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Progress in all areas

The grant application for scholarships from the Outer Banks Community Foundation will go in tomorrow. I have support letters from several agencies and from a former OBCF President. Keep your fingers crossed.
I also have spoken with Alice Lutz of Oxygen, a nonprofit consultant and Duke Instructor. She is interested in teaching her class on Marketing in the fall and in presenting a class in Leadership. We are working on the dates. Possibly we will offer the classes on successive days to maximize her time. Both of these topics were high on the advisory committee's priority list.
Finally Village Realty has offered to contribute rooms at the First Colony Inn for the instructors. It is clear, after talking with Alice that this will be a key in bringing instructors out for classes. The fees from Duke simply won't cover travel, lodging and meals. I had planned to supplement the fees with lodging and meals. Now the lodging component is covered. Thanks to Bob Oakes and all the good people at Village Realy.

Friday, May 2, 2008

GuideStar The Fired-Up Board: Preparing Your Board Members for Fundraising

Guidestar is a great source for articles and tips on a wide variety of nonprofit topics. The most recent newsletter has great articles - The Fired-Up Board: Preparing Your Board Members for Fundraising. The main focus of the article is developing board fundraising skills and enthusiasm. The article also contains some good advice about your board meetings.
Focus the agenda on results. Decide what is needed most out of the meeting and tell your board members: "By the end of this meeting, we need to accomplish x, y, and z." That will get their attention.
Focus on problems, challenges, or ambiguous issues. This approach will activate your board members' various backgrounds and skills sets, not to mention their interest. It will allow you to draw upon a deeper reservoir of their talent and energy and will give them more interesting work.
Plan big. Bring big-picture strategic planning issues into regular board meetings. For example, work SWOT analysis (strategic planning focusing on organizational strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) into regular meeting agendas.
Look at your board meetings as cheerleading sessions designed to fire up your board members and put them into action."
I firmly endorse these tips. Town of Nags Head board meetings always opened with succes stories and recognition of successes in the organization. We also focused on our partnerships with the nonprofit community. This emphasis helped citizens see the town as more than just faceless bureaucracy, it gave us a face and a story. In the end it made us human and more approachable.