I guess I’m a little surprised how long it took me to adjust from the trip to New Zealand and Australia. Due to a lengthy layover in LA, our total travel time was 36 hours. Ugh! Still, the trip was very productive and hopefully encouraging to our friends “down under.” I’m looking forward to a return trip someday.
One thing became patently clear on the trip: grant funding is a universal need for all nonprofits, not just in the US. I had the privilege of talking to the director of a community-based nonprofit called Police Community Youth Center in Armadale, Australia. As the name suggests, it is a collaboration between the local police and other community organizations to reach out to troubled and at risk youth. They have a stand alone building that houses a recreation room for pool tables, table tennis, fooseball and airhockey, as well as a computer room (”internet cafe’”) and private counseling/meeting rooms. The police provide the primary staff and sponsor much of the programming, but the fundraising is entirely up to an independent board of directors.
When the director heard that I was TheGrantWritingCoach he lit up and said, “Oh, you help people get grants? Do you think you can help us?” As I stood there at his desk he told me how much more they could do for the kids in the community if they only had some extra funding. Does that sound familiar? It does to me - I hear it all the time. I explained to him the importance of fundable projects and programs and he proceeded to rattle off a list of all the programs they were currently doing and all those they would like to do if only they had the funds. I smiled and said, “We need to talk.”