The community partners the Centre works with range from start-ups to well-established nationally-known organisations. They share a commitment to make a difference for their communities. Our work focuses on increasing each organisation’s capacity to be flexible, responsive and sustainable and achieve the outcomes they want for their communities.
Our work with community partners includes:
- Strengthening organisational governance and operations
- Identifying opportunities to better meet the needs of their communities
- Fostering effective partnerships with funders
- Connecting with corporate and specialist support
- Strengthening evaluation capacity
The Centre also connects its community partners to additional specialist and corporate support as required.
Examples of the work carried out by the Centre for community organisations include:
Foundation North – Catalysts for Change
Foundation North’s Catalysts for Change programme provides multi-year funding to community organisations taking innovative approaches to identified social issues. The Foundation North contracts the Centre for Social Impact to work alongside the Catalysts for Change grantees to help ensure they are able to deliver their initiatives.
The Centre’s engagement with the Catalysts for Change programme usually begins with working for the Foundation to assess the readiness of potential grantees, and to help those who may be suitable articulate what they want to achieve through a business plan for the Foundation. Once a grant has been made, the Centre provides selective support as required around our pou of design for social impact; capacity development; leadership; and understanding impact.
An example of the Centre’s work with Foundation North’s Catalysts for Change is our engagement with Kaikohe social enterprise, Ākau. Ākau is a changemaker in design, architecture and education. It is focused on achieving social impact by providing local youth with employment and internship opportunities through involvement in delivering design projects that meet real community needs. Foundation North has commissioned the Centre for Social Impact to build organisational capacity for the long-term. The Centre’s support has included developing leadership skills and financial capabilities to support the Ākau studio and its workshops programme.