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Organisational Response to a Community Development Process. Community Development December 5, 2003 By: Krystalyn Jones. Table of Contents. 1. Introduction. 2. Purpose of Assignment. 3. Identify & Create. 4. Establish & Evolve. 5. Mission Statement, Goals, & Principals.
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Organisational Response to a Community Development Process Community Development December 5, 2003 By: Krystalyn Jones
Table of Contents 1. Introduction 2. Purpose of Assignment 3. Identify & Create 4. Establish & Evolve 5. Mission Statement, Goals, & Principals 6. Planning Process 7. Board of Directors 8. Staff & Volunteers 9. Financial 10. Challenges 11. Conclusion
1. Introduction Youth Aflame Ministries is a Christian social service organization registered with the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency as a charitable organization. Established in 1991 in Lindsay, ON, it has since moved to the Northern part of the City of Kawartha Lakes. Programs offered include: Community Food Advisor program; Food Reach (food security, school breakfast programs, etc); mobile clothing program; S.E.R.V.E – a high school initiative; after school programs; Child Safe puppets; Mental Health / suicide presentations and support; healthy communities; crime prevention; and community mobilization.
2. Purpose of Assignment The purpose of this assignment is first a class project for Community Development and secondly, an opportunity for the learner to have hands on experience with a local agency, and it’s staff/volunteers, that was created in response to a community development process. Purpose + Assignment = Community Development Process
3. Identify & Create How was the need for the organization identified and what were the community development strategies and steps that led to its creation? • Youth Aflame Ministries was developed because a group of people, including two that were more of the “advocates”, identified a need for a stable living environment for at-risk street teens in Lindsay, ON. They wanted to create a loving atmosphere where people would feel comfortable, while at the same time having rules, boundaries and life skills training. This was identified through the use of surveys, publications, and advertisements in local papers. Key stakeholders as well as current community info, such as the statistics for local crime and homeless rates in youth, also provided input. • The organization utilized an Asset-based community development approach by matching community assets with community resources. • Steps that led to the creation of the organisation were: • The need was identified in the community and no services to meet this need were found. • A plan and commitment from volunteers to meet the need was developed. • A suitable resource base - a home suitable for 12-15 people – was found. • Support of local people and organisations was developed. • Linkages to other community resources and co-ordination of various events developed. • Formal partnerships with CAS, Social Assistance, and other youth organisations made. • Resource volunteers, such as live-in staff for the home obtained and trained. • Financial support for insurance and other costs developed. • Program review and adaptation to meet the needs and address issues.
4. Establish & Evolve When was it established and how has its role change or evolved over time? Youth Aflame was established in 1991, and received official charitable status shortly after. Since then the organization has evolved to meet the changing needs and to respond to community input and organizational review. They have gone from being a “group home” to more of a community development and support organisation. They have adapted to the times, shared resources, and have tried to fill whatever needs the community identifies. Often they have been an umbrella organization that helps to initiate projects and then gets the community involved so that they take over ownership of the program in order to ensure sustainability. A big change has been relocated from Lindsay to the Northern part of the City of Kawartha Lakes. The focus is now based more on the rural communities such as Norland, Coboconk, and Kinmount although sometimes they branch off into Kirkfield, Fenelon Falls, and back into Lindsay. The rural programs have brought forth new challenges such as the need to take the programs out into the community rather than having people come in for services. Thus, many of the programs have become mobile.
5. Mission Statement, Goals, & Principals What is the organization's Mission Statement and Long Range Goals? Youth Aflame’s Mission Statement is: “An organization with Christian based principles dedicated to supporting the children, youth, and families in our local communities.” Long range goals include: 1. The further development and support for programs that enhance the health of our local communities. 2. The development of a community resource centre that will be the base of the operations of the organization. 3. The development of a private foster care agency. 4. The development of a stable funding base in order to support the existing programs as well as the development of new programs, either alone or in partnership with others. Do they have a set of Operating Principals or Philosophy of Service Delivery? - Serving with simplicity and sacrifice - An authority of influence without control - Reconciliation in restoring broken lives, relationships, families, and communities - Integrity, respect, and love for human kind -- The Mission of the Gospel - Non-stigmatizing programs promoting a healthy community
6. Planning Process What type of long range planning process do they employ to identify future challenges and directions? • Individual programs are reviewed and adjusted at regular intervals (depending on the scope and length of each program) • Members are encouraged to volunteer with various other groups in order to identify community needs and opportunities for networking and partnerships • Feedback from community members, partners, funding sources, etc. help to identify challenges and potential direction of services • Members are connected to various initiatives ranging from the local communities to regional, provincial, federal and universal in scope that provide input to the planning process • The Board of Directors as well as the program managers meet on a regular basis to develop long range goals – sometimes utilizing the skills of outside resources
7. Board of Directors What is the nature, size, and composition of their Board of Directors? The Board of Directors for Youth Aflame Ministries Inc. consists of community members who adhere to the philosophy of the organization and are willing to commit to the support of the organization. It can consist of 3 to 12 members. The average size is relatively small, usually 5 individuals – not related to each other or program members. What is their background and term of office? What are the Board’s responsibilities? The recent members of the the Board of Director’s included a Correctional Officer, a Counselor, a Farming Assistant, a Truck Driver, and a Business Owner.
8. Staff & Volunteers Who are the paid staff in the organization and what are their roles? Youth Aflame is a volunteer based organization. Paid staffing is usually done on a contract basis based on funding available for each individual program. Summer students were hired through a summer job program sponsored by HRDC. Currently there are two interns from a college program working on administration and children programs who receive room & board as well as an honorarium. Special speakers may be brought in on a donation basis. What is the organization's chain of command, control, and communications? The Board of Directors are ultimately responsible for the organization although they work closely with the program managers. The program managers oversee the staff and volunteers and take any concerns or decisions to the Board. The organization has a financial manager responsible for fiscal management. Staff and volunteers are directed to communicate with the program managers first. If there is an issue of high concern, it would be either brought up at the next board meeting or immediately dealt with. Do they have an organization flow chart, if so what does it look like? B of D oversees the Program Managers and Financial Manager who oversee volunteers. What role do operational volunteers play within the organization and how many of them are there? The organization relies on volunteers for program operation, for evaluation purposes, for organizational planning & development, for information dissemination, for community partnerships, etc. Volunteers form the basis of support for the organization from the Board to program development and review.
9. Financial What are the major cost areas in their budget? Transportation, insurance and program expenses are a few of the largest expenses. What are the range of revenue sources they rely on to offset their budget costs? This really varies between each program, but in general the revenue comes from Private Foundations, Fund-raising, Various levels of Government, and Individual /Corporate Donations . Do they do any capital conservation budgeting and have they developed any reserve funds to deal with this issue? At this time there are no reserve funds for capital conservation although the organization does have some assets that may be liquidated in the future for capital expenses. Do they have an annual report that makes a public accounting of the past years program and financial efforts available to members and the public at large? A yearly report is submitted to the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency – Charities Division. It is available on the CCRA web site or by request.
10. Challenges What are the major challenges the organization faces over the next 3-5 year period? • Secure funding • Committed volunteers • Ongoing vision and determination by the Board to meet the organization’s goals • Changes in regulations and liability insurance costs What are they attempting to do to address these? • Partnerships with other organizations and funding sources • Alternate means of program funding including the development of business plans • Training of volunteers and Board members • Volunteer recognition and support
11. Conclusion Youth Aflame Ministries is an organization that is grass-roots in nature – it began at the community level because of an identified need. It has continued to grow and change to meet new community needs while maintaining it’s initial values. It continues to be volunteer driven and supported. Funding is found through various, and sometimes unique, means. It has supported other groups and does not maintain ownership of community programs but rather directs them to where they belong – in the hands of the community and its’ volunteers. The organization has at it’s base the Christian values it began with. They have been able to transfer these into interesting and supportive programs that are available to the whole community. At the same time, they have been able to reach out and support those who share these values. The organization is able to be flexible and adaptable because it is volunteer based. It is an independent organization that can meet the needs of the community quickly because the members all hold these same values and are willing to work alongside all of the other members of the organization. The future should be quite interesting for this organization.