I am honored to serve as the Community Foundation’s vice president for Community Investment. Over our 89 years, our community investments have contributed to so much of what we enjoy about living in Kalamazoo County.
Yet, in my role, I am learning more and more about how our community investments cannot solve the problems we aim to address. Despite the intensive review given to our grants and initiatives, and the great work being accomplished in partnership with nonprofits, the impact of our current efforts does not fully meet our mission to "make life better for all."
While some community conditions are getting incrementally better, others that are important to us are stagnant or declining. This is why the Community Foundation is in the process of discovering and designing a new framework that achieves transformational change. Our board of trustees is guiding us to develop a community transformation approach that can:
- Identify where, how and with whom our community knowledge, convening and resources can make the most impact;
- Achieve community level outcomes and address immediate needs; and
- Engage small and large organizations, and other partners seeking transformational change.
We intend for this community transformation framework to emerge from the intersections of local conditions, national best practices, and local expertise.
As a partner on our shared journey to serve Kalamazoo County, we welcome your input and encourage your support of our efforts to make life better for all.