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Capacity Building And You

Published: Sep 26, 2022 @ 3:14 PM

Coming to, what we all hope is, the emergence from a global pandemic I’ve seen a resurgence in the term “capacity building” across the sector. Maybe that’s because there is a desire to fill the obvious funding gaps with something familiar. Maybe it’s because our capacity as a sector was shown to be lacking through the pandemic. Maybe it’s a distraction.

While we talk a lot about volunteers getting connected, humans in the center and providing capacity through a digital transformation . . . we still undertake a lot of capacity building as a team. In fact, we do more capacity building today than we once did 10 years ago but the principles are the same. Here they are:

  • We know that change is rooted in local interactions. Particularly 1-2-1 interactions that help new knowledge take shape. This approach to change is articulated by Ralph D Stacey as he explores effective organizational change.
  • We know that learning happens at the pace of the learner and when they determine for themselves that new skills are required. For all our neurodivergent friends out there who tried to succeed inside the system of K-12 education we sympathize with you. That is not a system designed for the pace of the learner but rather as a conveyor belt as articulated best by Ken Robinson.
  • Finally, we know that for most people empathy, compassion and even love are required. This is found in our own training, our own journeys over the last decade. Being available for what another human is experiencing and coaching them where to focus energies  and find new resources, through compassion, is the most effective way to provide practical support everyone calls capacity building.

You can see in those practical applications of theory the threads of Training, Consulting and Coaching. Those are the words most offered in capacity building services. In our world when you see “email us” this is what we mean.

Remarkably, over 5,150 individuals representing community organizing tapped into our team’s capacity building efforts in 2021. That number is already growing in 2022 as we all seek to emerge stronger from a pandemic and face the worst economic crisis in 80 years.

As always, in volunteerism if you are feeling lost or unsure of what next . . . reach out to the team