A New Year, a Time of Reflection and Renewal
by Missy Hanks, Executive Director

Welcome to a new year!  What a wonderful time of reflection and renewal, a chance to reevaluate and make intentional changes to continue progress in both our personal and professional lives.

As we begin 2023, we should focus on how our organizations will aim to improve and enhance services to our community this year. How will our agencies achieve success in 2023? What are our specific indicators of success? In the nonprofit world, it is common for us to say that we are "trying to work ourselves out of a job" or we are "empowering people so that they can be successful." However, it is important that we are tracking concrete indicators of success in order to uphold these statements and the efficacy of our agencies as well as our programs.  

Tayna Rains, the Executive Director of New Futures shares, "All the good in the world doesn't help someone if you are taking away their ability to be self-sustaining in the future. With an effort based program and a program that tracks and values outcomes, you can assess each individual and find opportunities  for them to contribute...the best services offer choice, so that individuals are comfortable asking for the specific help they need and therefore able to move from crisis to stability using their own self determination."

Joy Dodd, facilities coordinator at New Futures adds, "Reminding those that we help of their worth and ability to help themselves is, in the long run, far more charitable than just providing repeated handouts."

Beth Zinn, the True Charity Program Director for the ELM Foundation shares, "If we were all using the same model and tool, we would definitely know when and how to provide accurate charity as well as when to appropriately withhold services, if warranted."

Our community goal should be to provide the opportunity to every citizen no matter their race, ethnicity or circumstance at birth to be self-sufficient, fulfilled and happy. As we strive to measure our outcomes, we will know we are hitting the mark. 2023 is the year that we can measure the good that we are doing in the community so that our agencies share good news and accurate numbers to our board members, community stakeholders, and donors.

If your nonprofit, agency, or church would like to learn more about measuring the outcomes of your efforts, The ELM Foundation can help by providing free training and support. Give us a call at (256) 217-7141 or email missy@elmhsv.org    

by Missy Hanks

Executive Director

"Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it." -Hellen Keller