Capacity-Building Programs: Examples
With River Network and a coalition of statewide and regional organizations, I helped lead the design, training of trainers, tracking, and reporting for the Watershed Support Network. The goal is to strengthen watershed organizations. We set a series of indicators of organizational strength, developed a series of training “modules, and harassed watershed groups to complete surveys. The statewide and regional organizations received training in delivering those modules, and also provided their own modules. At the end of the program, we could quantify:
the number of workshops and participants;
substantial diversification of the organizations' fundraising, and larger budgets; and
improvements in basic organizational practices, such as the existence of annual workplans, fundraising plans, and long-term strategic plans.
The quantifiable results led to changes in our approach, and also to renewed financing.
"Baird, thanks for your leadership in the Watershed Support Network both as a founding member of the steering committee and as a “Trainer of Trainers”. Your efforts as part of this professional collaborative have created an extremely valuable organizational assessment and evaluation program for watershed groups around the country.” – Wendy Wilson, River Network