Stay tuned for more information about Pillar Community Impact Program applications for 2023 and view our 2022 program overview for more information about our impact.
In 2022, Pillar announced a significant commitment to the social recovery of our community through the launch of the Pillar Community Impact Program (PCIP). We choose to pivot away from hosting the Pillar Community Innovation Awards on a temporary basis in response to the needs of our network for a deeper level of direct support, in light of ongoing sector resource challenges and increased demands for services.
Over 25 organizations have reached out for support through the program validating the data about the grave financial and human resource challenges facing nonprofit and social impact sector organizations. Now more than ever, the sector needs capacity building support so organizations can continue to deliver essential and community enriching services that so many depend on. PCIP applicants expressed financial need and resource constraints as the most significant factors impacting their ability to execute on core functions.
"The largest need within the organization is communications support regarding fund development as a major priority at this time is fundraising and diversification of revenue streams,” said program participant Sakeenah Canada. “Being able to communicate with others about the importance of the work that we are doing is important and we hope that it allows us to create relationships with donors and corporations that will allow us to continue to do the work that we are passionate about."
Our pilot year of programming was a great success as we were able to offer support to four organizations with core business function services valued at over $41,000. The two organizations we have completed work with have benefited from tangible action plans focused on communications planning and strategic planning, with plans underway to support two others on developing an equity, inclusion, and anti-oppression action plan; and business planning.
Through PCIP, we also identified ways to support an additional 24 organizations whether through access to a Pillar membership, working space at Innovation Works, opportunities to participate in our Learning & Development programming, or connections to marketing support through our in-kind sponsors. Multiple participants expressed their deep appreciation for access to actionable support that wouldn't have been accessible otherwise.
"It was good to have people independent of our organization who can look in and not have ownership in the same way as volunteers, and who could provide critical feedback. To have someone else tell you in a way that gets you to think more about it is really helpful,” said program participant London Black History Coordinating Committee. “It has pushed people to say - we’ve got to do something. Everyone is at the place where we agree we have to do something differently. We’re in a better place now."
We continue to believe this program provides much needed value and guidance for local social impact organizations during this ongoing phase of community recovery. We’re deeply appreciative of our many sponsor organizations whose support is enabling local nonprofits to deepen their impact.