Last Saturday, NAMI Colorado and Sandstone Care hosted an Affiliate Development Workshop. This collaborative event connected our Affiliates by allowing us to share ideas and information about our success and struggles. Elsa and Kendra from NAMI Colorado did an excellent job at planning the event and ensuring every detail was met in perfect timing. Their well developed agenda flowed smoothly and gave everyone a chance to have their community voice heard.
A common theme emerged, each of us seem to have similar needs for development/improvement. A few examples of those are:
- Board member engagement/attraction
- Volunteer attraction/retention
- Fundraising opportunities
- Community marketing efforts
- Social media marketing
- Additional support/resources from NAMI Colorado
As the day went on, the ideas flowed freely. It was apparent that many of our struggles were similar and even better our successes could be utilized among the other Affiliates. Each thought seemed to develop into something really valuable. Collectively, we were able to identify some areas of support and resources, as well as brainstorm about the need for ongoing Affiliate training.
One key area was identified, relating to how we connect with our communities. As societal demand has required each of us to become more technologically connected, the adaptive pressures for an Affiliate are greater and seem to be ever-changing. The learning curve for this kind of connection seems to be an area that we can definitely see some considerable growth through additional training/education. There will be upcoming discussion about how those needs can be best met through NAMI Colorado.
This collaborative approach really felt like each Affiliate had a voice and there were many partners with shared experience to help find a solution. I would like to personally thank all of my NAMI colleagues from NAMI Adams County, NAMI Arapahoe/Douglas Counties, NAMI Aurora, NAMI Denver, NAMI High Country, NAMI Jeffco, NAMI Larimer County, NAMI Roaring Fork, NAMI Weld County for their time and valuable input. It was a pleasure to brainstorm with each of you.
With one final note, our community partner Sandstone Care, graciously hosted this event in their newly completed facility. Their Colorado-based treatment program for adolescents and young adults has a mission of “The relentless pursuit of successful clinical outcomes helping individuals and families achieve sustainable recovery.” Many thanks to them for their support and partnership, as well as the awesome parting gifts!