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First Nonprofit Sector Viability Program of 2010 to be Offered to Organizations in Cumberland & York Counties

by LK Gagnon

The first Nonprofit Sector Viability Program of 2010 will provide teams of senior staff and board leaders of ten nonprofit organizations in southern Maine with a structured and supportive environment for thinking deeply about the viability of their mission, programs and finances, and for identifying new options to sustain their organizations and/or missions through collaborative and other means.

This offering will be especially beneficial for executive directors and board leaders who are interested in proactive, creative and adaptive responses to significant shifts in funding and demand for their services in the wake of an economic downturn. Organizations in York and Cumberland counties are invited to submit an application.

Participants will walk away from the clinic with:

• In depth fiscal and programmatic viability analyses

• Greater clarity about their programmatic futures

• Concrete plans for coping with immediate economic challenges

• Options for pursuing collaboration, merger or alliance as means to sustaining mission and increasing intended impacts

• Clear steps for implementation

• Targeted consulting assistance.

The program consists of three components:

1. An introspective 16 page self assessment that engages both board and staff to answer three questions: Are we operating from a position of relative strength or weakness? What kind of financial flexibility do we have? And what are our options for adapting, strengthening and managing in today’s challenging times, particularly our options for collaboration, strategic alliance and merger?

2. A 1 ½ day workshop, being offered March 23-24, which is designed to lead executive directors and board leaders sequentially from analysis to action planning. Workshop components strike a balance between large group and individual engagement and between providing information and engaging participants in analysis or planning. Consultants will play a facilitative and guiding role throughout, particularly during periods of individual engagement, and will be partnered with organizations that match their areas of expertise and experience.

3. Following the workshop, participants can request up to six hours of complimentary consulting to assist with implementation.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

All interested organizations will be asked to submit a short application to be considered for this opportunity. For further information and to request this application, please contact Annie Sutton at Maine Association of Nonprofits at asutton@nonprofitmaine.org. Deadline for applications is January 29th.

Thanks to the generous financial support from a variety of funding sources as well as the pro bono work of organizations behind the collaborative, five of the ten organizations will participate in this program for free; the remaining five organizations will pay only a nominal fee.

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