Tuesday, April 15, 2008
A while back I wrote about a CEO Summit that was held in New York in February. It's goal was to encourage corporate volunteers to use their talent to help build non profit infrastructure.
Today I had a conversation with a representative from Verizon who pointed me to the Verizon Foundation web site. I've been here in the past, and have links to the site on the T/MC web site, but the foundation has done a great deal to update the information and presentation since I was there last.
One thing that is new is the addition of Thinkfinity which provides free resources to teachers. Sites like this are great resources for tutors/mentors and parents, too. One of the workshops at the May 29 and 30 Conference will be presented by Thinkfinity, which can help local programs learn more about how they might use this resource.
Another section on the web site was a Resource Center providing information non profit leaders could learn, and use, to build more effective organizations.
I think these resources and the information on the Verizon Foundation web site are great. However, for small and medium non profits, who are struggling with survival and everyday issues of doing business, this represents a wealth of learning, but not the manpower to put this learning to work in the organization.
The idea of the CEO Summit was to draw talent from business who could do needed work in the non profit sector. Some people have interpreted this as "project based work" such as "build your employee handbook" or "build your web site". However, as a non profit leader, I know that once I have the handbook, or the web site, I need manpower to manage the use of these resources in my organization on an on-going basis.
Thus, my goal is that corporations begin to encourage people in their companies who have the skills shown on the Verizon Foundation Resource Page, to offer their talent on an on-going basis, in causes that require on-going application of time and talent to get a result. I have created a PDF that illustrates this intermediary role that leaders in business, churches, colleges, etc. can take to connect people who can help, with places and organizations where help is needed on an on-going basis.
I'm going to be reaching out to Verizon to ask for their help in communicating this message, just as I've been reaching out to churches, colleges, lawyers and leaders of other tutor/mentor programs. If you're already connecting your corporate talent with non profits on an on-going basis, why not come to the conference in Chicago on May 29 and 30 and do a workshop to share your story. Or, add the link to your corporate resource page to the T/MC links library.