Welcome to this special YNPN Edition of Blue Avocado! We've partnered with our friends over at the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network to deliver you a special edition of Blue Avocado featuring young, insightful writers from around the country.
My dad is a fan of saying, "Many hands make light work," as I'm being voluntold to help clean up after dinner. Now how does being elbow deep in burnt on spaghetti sauce relate to nonprofits? It's hard work but collaboration makes it easier.
A Saturday morning walk through the Lower West Side ("Pilsen") community of Chicago may trick you into thinking you've accidentally stumbled across the southern U.S. border. The sidewalks are crowded with pop-up artisan markets, stands selling homemade tamales and aguas frescas, and pickup trucks loaded with fresh produce for sale. The vivacious community overflows with people and colorful murals. It feels as though a small piece of Mexico was transplanted to the Heart of Chicago, but it didn't start out that way.
If a key leader at your organization left their job today, who would fill their place? Developing the next generation of nonprofit leaders is critical to the future of every nonprofit organization.
Millennials now makeup the largest generation in the U.S. workforce, but many nonprofits do not yet have policies and systems in place that attract young professionals, invest in their professional development, or incentivize them to stay and carry out their mission.
At first glance, nonprofits and millennials seem like a match made in heaven. Despite often being judged by our peers, our so-called "entitled" generation puts our desire for positive change above almost all else, seeking jobs that allow us to both do good and feel good.
In these tumultuous political times, the nonprofit community has started asking important questions: What is our responsibility to speak out on behalf of our staff, clients, and community? How do we advocate for them without violating our 501(c)(3) status, and while remaining an open and inclusive space for supporters of all political identities?
I'm not sure about you, but professional development (PD) at my last job consisted of little more than a few forgettable webinars and a yearly training that supported my work, but not my career. While my work was challenging and fulfilling, there were few opportunities for professional growth.