What's Your Plan?
- Published on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 12:38
|By: Marianne Lynch|
What’s your Plan?
As I’ve settled into my position at the Executive Director, I’ve been engaging many of our stakeholders in conversations about leadership, listening to their ideas and sharing my own. The question that has come back to me time and time again throughout this process has been “What’s your plan?”
I think, with the transition in leadership that’s occurred over the past few years, this is a fair question. Our investors want to know how their money has been (and is going to be) spent, our volunteers want to know if they will still be needed in the future and our families want to know if there will still be opportunities for them to own homes of their own someday.
So, I would like to share the plan. It is one based on a solid approach to capacity building, concentration on the families we serve, being good stewards of the resources we’ve been given and modest, steady growth leading to innovative new approaches addressing substandard housing in our community.
First, we have a little work to do on our own “house,” building our capacity in order to serve our community better. We are auditing our safety and security procedures, making sure that our information is accurate and relevant to the community and reviewing the way that we handle our volunteer, partner and family relationships. We can use room for improvement and these areas are no exception. Once they are addressed, we will continue to concentrate on building our name and reputation in the community - hopefully with your help! Habitat and the ReStore make some important contributions–we just need to get the word out about what those are.
At the same time, we are looking to our partners to share with us how we can work better with each of them, sharing their generosity with others and most importantly thanking them for all they do to support this very important mission. I will personally be connecting with many of our corporate, foundation and individual supporters to thank them and to begin the process of planning our future for the next three to five years.
At the same time, we must look at our ability to impact the community now and in the future. Although we’ve been doing this for more than 20 years through our homeownership program, there is more that we could and should be doing to end substandard housing in Montgomery County. Recently, we agreed to become a Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative affiliate in partnership with Habitat for Humanity International. This program will allow us to expand our offerings to owner-occupied homes and community development efforts. We will be performing critical home repairs, supporting other community organizations in neighborhoods desiring positive change and increasing impact for families throughout the county. This year, we are looking to do at least five additional projects as part of this effort. More to come on this in a future blog!
Finally, we need to fulfill our promises to the three families anxiously awaiting homes of their own, to a family in Ambler hopeful to move back into their flood-ravaged home, to the 56 new families in the ownership pipeline and to the 43 homeowners who have faith in our ability to manage their mortgages each month. This means that we must complete the homes currently under construction using best practices and creating energy efficient dwellings that will be affordable to own, finish the prep work to begin building in a new community and be available to our homeowners when they need us.
It’s a long list, but a doable one, especially with fantastic supporters like you to help us along. We will need your feedback, guidance and enthusiasm to move the mission to a place where there is no poverty housing in our community.