Charitable Sector Stimulus Package

In both the US and Canada, governments are announcing their economic stimulus packages.  Obama brings on a team of economic advisors ranging from Harvard policy experts and Stanford University economists to past government beauraucrats; Harper met with interest groups across Canada to ensure that his package reflects the needs of the citizens.  At the end of the day the charitable sector wasn't forgotten, but I am not sure it was engaged effectively either.

I wonder, for example, if it is better to do a large long-term investment into the economy (similar to what Obama is suggesting) instead of taking a staged approach.  A staged approach is something that, in working with charities, has been the most effective method of sustainable development.  I think our governments can take a page out of the way the charitable sector manages their finances.

  1. Clearly articulate the objectives for the funding and the intended results (long-term vision = impact)
  2. Identify ALL the possible sources of funding and timeline to secure those funds
  3. Stage the project implementation according to the funding timing AND based on the staged outcomes in order to move the project forward
  4. Build in evaluation measures and exit strategies should the program not be achieving its intended outcomes
  5. Engage others in your activities

The charitable sector is a very large contributor to both nation's GDP.  Economnic slow-downs are the time to start looking at charitable organizations as partners in weathering the economic storm. 

Donors are becoming more and more savvy in the way they invest their funds.  They are also becoming more cautious of charities as tax-shelter schemes become more prominent in the news.  This means that these individuals are choosing to invest in organizations that have strong reputations, good governance and sustainable funding.  Businesses should be looking for similar clients.  Going where these types of donors are going means that that is also where your business growth can be found.