Network of Support
For every person wanting to make real, tangible changes in the world, or even within their community, putting together the necessary resources and manpower is a huge challenge. While funding is the biggest challenge, Equal Life Foundation envisions an approach of interdependent support and collaboration between different projects, where the weakness or need of one project can be bolstered by the strength of another.
What this would look like in practical terms can take many different forms, but here are some examples to give you an idea of what is possible:
- Collaboration in outreach - where groups and individuals with similar expertise join forces to provide intensive outreach clinics to specific communities. For example: Organisations oriented to providing healthcare can host clinics that have sufficient manpower and skills to provide targeted clinics aimed at the various groups in need. One weekend could consist of a female health and hygiene clinic, a male health and hygiene clinic, Safe sex clinics catered to the specific culture of the audience, child care, geriatric care, how to create a balanced diet with readily available foods, skin care, hair care, free eye tests (with donated glasses), and so on.
- Database of skills and resources - Many projects have strengths in different areas, but also weaknesses in others. Where one group may lack manpower and not a particular resource like a raw material, another may lack raw materials to implement their vision (but have ample manpower). These groups could be matched up with the ELF database by matching the suitable "needs/weakness" of one with the "strengths/resources available to share" with another. In this, a sort of trade can take place (or even a donation, where we learn to give as we would like to receive, and in so doing, create a culture of giving. What goes around, comes around!). Imagine a group that has received donations of all the materials they need to craft wares to sell, but not enough volunteers to craft them, and another group consisting of many members, but insufficient materials with which to craft anything. If both groups are willing to collaborate, they could come together to share their resources and collaborate to reach one specific goal.
- Sharing of information - Not everyone who ventures into the realm of not-for-profit activities knows how to go about it. Raising funding, advertising, networking, finding volunteers, etc are no small tasks. We can all help each other by sharing our knowledge and experiences, to support each other to succeed.
- Referral system - The more we get to know each other, the more we can refer potential new members, volunteers, and suitable donations to each other. One group member may meet someone who wants to get involved with animal rescue, and could then refer them to a suitable project in this database. Talk about free advertising! Once again, we have the opportunity to practice sharing, to create a culture of giving.