Thoughts, Perspectives & Ideas

Build Trusting Partnerships: 5 Starting Points

As a child, it was easy to make friends. In the 4th grade, we were assigned seats and my classroom neighbor became my lifelong friend. As adults, we can’t necessarily count on assigned seating in our personal or professional lives, but there are other ways to forge successful relationships and partnerships. Embarking on a new…

Details

5 Tips to Cure Your Strategic Planning Hangover

By Christina Bath Collosi Do you hate strategic planning? Or perhaps find it devoid of strategy? You are not alone. In exploratory strategic planning conversations, we often find that our time is spent unwinding previous bad planning experiences that were spent drowning in process paralysis. Call it a hangover effect of bad strategic planning. Are…

Details

Boldly Leading for Social Good

By Nicole Tanner When Christina and I made the decision to focus the core of VIVA’s work on large-scale community impact projects, we knew that the work would never be boring. Facilitating multiple partners to address complex social issues, designing new systems and initiatives, bringing key stakeholders to the table to create a shared vision,…

Details

Social Media for Social Good

By Annalise Stromsta   Just a couple of weeks after starting my job at VIVA last summer, I found myself standing outside on a sunny afternoon, holding a camera as two coworkers poured a bucket of ice water onto one of my colleague’s heads. Not usually a part of a typical workday, but it was…

Details

Data in the Social Sector: Crunching Numbers to Challenge Assumptions

By Peggy Chang    There are two types of people when it comes to data: the type that gets excited, delves into details, and eagerly plows through spreadsheets, and the type that groans and goes to pour another cup of coffee to make it through the meeting. It is completely natural for us to have…

Details

Spinning Out of Control? A Communications Strategy Can Help

By Laura Bowen   Sometimes communications work, especially for organizations focused on positive community change, can feel like being on a hamster wheel. Limited resources, limited time, and lots of demands means staff are constantly on the go, moving rapidly from one task to the next. This is often the case when an organization has…

Details

Leadership and the Suspension of Disbelief

By Christina Bath Collosi   I am not a runner. Somehow though, I am running a half marathon tomorrow. It all started three months ago when I wanted to visit my former adopted hometown of Santa Barbara and I could not justify the travel expense without a really good reason. As I scoured the Internet…

Details

QRIS 2.0 in California: What’s Next?

By Karina Rivera  |  June 9th, 2015   With less than one year left in California’s Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) grant that developed and piloted regional Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) in 16 counties across California, many questions are being raised. Is the seven-element matrix that places early learning…

Details

The Childhood Experiences that Can Shape a Lifetime of Health

By Laura Bowen    In last week’s blog post on the five things we learned at the 2015 Child Health, Education, and Care Summit, Edwin Ferran described ACEs, or Adverse Childhood Events, as the public health issue of our time. Why? ACEs are shockingly common (67% of people studied in the original ACEs research had…

Details