Equipping nonprofits to advance social change

Tag: Social Services

Getting Out of Poverty Takes More Than Grit

Jesse is a recent graduate of Brown University and a 2014 Fulbright recipient. Earlier this month, Aisha Sultan wrote an article for the Atlantic titled “The Limitations of Teaching ‘Grit’ in the Classroom.” In it, Sultan critiqued the idea that if low-income children just transform their mindsets... more

Obamacare: The Potential in Service to Social Change

This past week, the Building Movement Project Team had the privilege to hear from several leaders in Los Angeles about how the implementation of Obamacare is being leveraged by forward-looking organizations, both service and organizing, as an opportunity for movement building.

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Presenting at the Alliance Conference

Each year the people who provide you with technical assistance, organizational development, leadership training, transition management, and a host of other supports for nonprofits meet together at the Alliance for Nonprofit Management conference. This year it is practically in our back yard – in Newark, NJ – and Sean and I will be headed there Friday morning to talk about our new reports on A Series of 5% Shifts.

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Breakfast in Detroit

Sean Thomas-Breitfeld and Caitlin Endyke profile one of the case studies featured in our recent report, Building Community from the Inside Out, on how small organizational shifts can lead to large impacts.  This piece was originally featured in Transformation, a new online publication from Michael Edwards and openDemocracy.

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Building Community from the Inside Out

This report, the first in a series about organizational "5% shifts", includes two case studies of community building efforts by nonprofit organizations in Detroit and New York City. St. Matthew’s & St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church’s hot breakfast program in Detroit offers a model of a small shift in engagement with community members seeking healthy meals in the midst of an urban food desert. Their decision to shift from using a soup line mode of serving individuals to serving groups with shared ‘family-style’ meals leveraged the power of ritual around meals, which are both nostalgic and deeply affirming, to transform dynamics between clients and volunteers. But more importantly the shared meal time became a way to model the kind of community the church envisions for Detroit—one of mutual aid, sharing and abundance. The other case—Queens Community House—provides an example of community building among staff. The organization took on the challenge of fostering relationships among staff; not to boost morale and retention, but to live its values and principles in all parts of the organization.

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What do “Neoliberalism & Marketization” have to do with the nonprofit sector?

Here at Building Movement, we often talk about the importance of devoting time for learning as the first step in the Transformation process of integrating social change values and activities into the work of service agencies. Our Staff and Project Team also focus on learning and reflection in our own work, especially at our semi-annual Project Team meetings. For our meeting later this month, we are reading two articles on Neoliberalism and the Marketization of the Nonprofit Sector. Co-Director Sean Thomas-Breitfeld reflects on the tough critiques and interesting questions raised by the articles. Read more for links and to join in on the discussion! more

BMP Detroit Partners Featured in Huffington Post!

The North End Woodward Community Coalition, a longstanding BMP partner in Detroit, recently made headlines by announcing that it will file a Title VI Civil Rights complaint against the Detroit Department of Transportation, alleging recent bus cuts came without proper notice or public hearings. more

The Real Deal with Detroit Transit

Our Partners at Progress Michigan recently released this video where they interviewed every day commuters in Detroit about their experiences with the severe bus cuts that recently ravaged the city's transit system. more

Updates from our Partners: Somos Mayfair

Somos Mayfair is a long-time partner of BMP on our work on Social Change for Service Providers. They've recently started a new campaign to reverse education and health inequities in their community. They've received a major foundation gift to aid them in this important work, but need more help in order to make real change happen. Check out their project update to learn more about the campaign and find out how you can help. more

Catalysts for Change Podcast with the San Francisco Foundation Center

Frances Kunreuther, director of the Building Movement Project, sits down with the Foundation Center of San Francisco to discuss how service organizations can take part in activities beyond delivering direct services to address the systemic causes of issues affecting their communities. more

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