Over 130 Nonprofit Leaders Magnify Their Voices at Fairfield County’s Advocacy Day
May 31, 2018
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation Fosters Cross-Collaboration Between Public, Private and Nonprofit Sectors
Norwalk, CT) Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Center for Nonprofit Excellence hosted over 130 members of Connecticut’s nonprofit community today during an interactive and collaborative Advocacy Day 2018 at Grace Farms in New Canaan. As part of its ongoing Advocacy Series, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation offered this seminar in partnership with Grace Farms Foundation. Designed to strengthen advocacy skills and best practices among nonprofits, the seminar featured experts, a panel discussion and workshops.
Fairfield County’s Advocacy Day 2018 emphasized boosting advocacy skills and encouraged networking with other local nonprofits advocating for change in their communities. The event featured keynote speaker Frances Kunreuther, co-director of the Building Movement Project, which develops research, tools, training materials and opportunities for partnership that bolster nonprofit organizations’ ability to support the voice and power of the people they serve.
“At a critical juncture for our region, state and nation, Advocacy Day 2018 provided an opportunity to celebrate the important work of our nonprofit sector and empower them to be stronger, more effective voices for the communities and people they serve,” said RJ Mercede, Manager, Center for Nonprofit Excellence, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. “Many thanks to Grace Farms Foundation for their support and deepest gratitude to all the attendees who started today’s conversation and contributed to this powerful day. We look forward to our continued partnership and engagement to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to thrive.”
Skills-building breakout sessions during Advocacy Day 2018 included The Nuts & Bolts of Lobbying, led by Elizabeth Brown, E.C. Brown Consulting; Incorporating Human Voice & Data for Great Storytelling with expert Mackenzie Rigg, CT Mirror; Building A Bigger Tent: Exploring & Securing New Partnerships, under the direction of Krishna Patel, Grace Farms Foundation and Purpose, Power & Influence: Essential Elements for an Effective Advocacy Campaign with Jeff Shaw, CT Community Nonprofit Alliance. A panel discussion including Anka Badurina of Building One Community, Maddie Granato of CT Women’s Education and Legal Fund, Laura McCargar of Perrin Family Foundation and Val Ramos of Everyday Democracy inspired attendees with stories of impact and best practice sharing.
“The open architecture of Grace Farms is designed to encourage collaboration and contribute to the good work being done in our community. Advocacy Day is a truly inspiring realization of that vision, with over 130 not-for-profit leaders coming together to be empowered and equipped in order to garner the support they need as they continue to advance their missions in the world,” said Lisa Lynne Kirkpatrick, Community Initiative Director, Grace Farms Foundation.
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Advocacy Series launched its 2017-18 program with Legislative Forums held in Bridgeport, Danbury, Norwalk and Stamford, and continued with a focus on strengthening relationships between nonprofit leaders and elected officials to encourage them to work together for community improvement.
Members from the following organizations contributed to the success of Fairfield County Advocacy Day 2018: Ability Beyond; Achievement First; All Our Kin; Alliance for Children’s Mental Health; Arc of Connecticut; Ballet School of Stamford at Chelsea Piers; Beyond Limits Academic Program; Blossom Hill Foundation; Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich; Bridgeport Caribe Youth Leaders; Bridgeport Generation Now; Bridgeport Hospital; Bridgeport Rescue Mission; Bruce Museum; Building Movement Project; Building One Community; Capital for Change; Carver Foundation of Norwalk; Center for Family Justice; Child & Family Guidance Center; Child Advocates of Southwestern Connecticut; Connecticut Against Gun Violence; Connecticut Community Nonprofit Alliance; Connecticut Council for Philanthropy; Connecticut Food Bank; Connecticut Institute for Refugees and Immigrants; Connecticut Legal Services; Connecticut Mirror; Connecticut Women’s Education and Legal Fund; E.C. Brown Consulting; Empowering Children and Families; Everyday Democracy; Fairfield County’s Community Foundation; Fairfield Museum; Fairgate Farm; Festivities Foundation; Fordham GSS; Friends of Animals; Fund for Women and Girls; Garden Education Center of Greenwich; Genesis Lutheran Church; Girl Scouts of Connecticut; Grace Farms Foundation; Grossman Family Foundation; Housing Development Fund; Insperity; Justice Consultants; Keepers of the Readers’ Fire; Keystone House; Kids Helping Kids; Kids in Crisis; Lifesavers Healing Together; LiveGirl; Merritt Parkway Conservancy; Mill River Park Collaborative; NAMI Connecticut; Neighbor to Neighbor; Neighborhood Studios of Fairfield County; New Canaan Cares; New Canaan Community Foundation; New Canaan Land Trust; New Canaan Mounted Troop; New Canaan Nature Center; New Reach; Norwalk Community College Foundation; Norwalk Community Health Center; Norwalk Grows; Norwalk River Watershed Association; Norwalk Senior Center; Open Doors; Perrin Family Foundation; Person to Person; Planned Parenthood of Southern New England; Read to Grow; Recovery Network of Programs; Regional Youth Adult Social Action Partnership; Saint Joseph Parenting Center; SilverSource; SoundWaters; Stamford 2030 District; Stamford Peace Youth Foundation; Stamford Public Education Foundation; TechnoTeens; WeCAHR; Women’s Mentoring Network; World Affairs Forum; Youth Council 4 Justice and ZOOM Foundation.
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