Want to make an impact in your community? Nonprofit executive Peter Nyberg shares some insights.
Many people want to make an impact in their local community. Unfortunately, however, doing so is often easier said than done. If you want to make a positive impact, you’ll have to leverage your resources and skills effectively. Not sure how to get started? Peter Nyberg, who is the Chief Financial Officer of the Camino Health Center, is going to share some insights.
“Community outreach and community work can be rather difficult,” Peter Nyberg argues. “That said, you can potentially make a huge difference in your community if you use the right approach. You should start by developing a clear vision of what your organization wants to accomplish.”
Developing a strong vision statement and mission statement can help you focus. They’re also useful for guiding volunteers, staff members, and donors. In many ways, your vision and mission statements will set the tone for your organization.
You don’t have to write your vision and mission statements in a vacuum. The same is true for other materials as well. Bouncing ideas and asking for feedback from various stakeholders can help you hone your vision and how you present yourself to the community.
Clear communication is vital for community outreach. You’ll want to make sure you present a unified message to the community. You’ll also need to develop marketing and communication channels. A website, social media profiles, and other tools can help you interact with your community.
“With communication, basic marketing strategies can go a long way,” Peter Nyberg says. “You also have to speak the local lingo and when communicating complex ideas, such as healthcare, you have to develop messages that people understand.”
It’s also smart to develop ties with other organizations that are serving your community. By teaming up, you can leverage resources and influence. You’ll also increase awareness.
Further, rather than focusing primarily on huge goals, such as “ending world hunger,” it’s wise to focus on realistic goals that you can achieve. For example, you might try to “deliver one hundred nutritious cooked meals” each week.
Peter Nyberg Says The Community Needs Must Come First
At the end of the day, organizations that offer useful services will often sell themselves. On the other hand, if you offer services that no one needs, the best community outreach plan in the world may still flop.
“When you’re building a non-profit, or you’re trying to establish a program, you need to remember that the community’s wants, needs, and ambitions come first,” Peter Nyberg explains. “Your own wants and needs are a secondary consideration.”
This means sitting down and listening to members of the community. What services can people actually use? How can you make lasting change? For the Camino Health Center, providing healthcare takes priority. The organization also provides access to food and other resources because such services are important for promoting good health.