Posted 8 March 2014
This and other changes are underway thanks to a recent grant from Mountain Equipment Co-op.
In November 2013, ORA received a capacity-building grant from Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC). The $35,000 grant is enabling ORA to undertake several initiatives aimed at increasing our effectiveness as an organization. Project activities include strategic and fundraising planning, rebranding, website development, and outreach/membership development.
Developing a strategic plan will enable ORA to set priorities and goals based on our mission, and the needs of our member organizations. The planning process began in December with a survey of ORA members and others who have shown an interest in our activities. We are grateful to those people who shared their opinions and ideas, as the results will help inform the development of a draft plan. The draft will be refined by board members over the course of several months, followed by a consultation session at our General Meeting in June with invited stakeholders. ORA is working with the Sudbury Social Planning Council to complete the plan, and it will be finalized by the early fall.
Another goal of the project is to develop a fundraising plan to outline ways to ensure adequate resources are in place to meet the goals in the strategic plan. Those goals will require increased human resources. Since it was founded in 2011, ORA has operated almost entirely through the diligent efforts of volunteers. The MEC grant has made it possible to hire a consultant for some key functions, taking pressure off volunteers and making the organization more sustainable in the long-term. We have started working to increase ORA’s human resources, with two major grant applications under way. If successful, ORA will be able to hire a full-time Director of Rivers and a Communication and Outreach Coordinator.
The MEC funds are also supporting rebranding, website redesign and membership development activities, all of which are also in progress and are aimed at building and strengthening our support base for the future. Our new logo above was designed by Studio 123 – a talented design firm that is making its mark in the Sudbury area.
The capacity building grant is part of MEC’s larger Community Contributions initiative. Through Capacity Building grants ranging from $5,000 to $35,000, MEC supports grassroots conservation organizations and activity-based organizations by providing funding that will help strengthen their effectiveness. MEC’s Community Contributions program helps keep space for adventure by conserving ecologically and recreationally important places, and by inspiring and enabling Canadians to be active outside. As a member of 1% For The Planet, MEC invests one percent of its annual revenue to environmental causes.
A big thank you to MEC for this important grant!
ORA would also like to thank Marcus Clement for the great logo he created for us back in 2011. It served us very well for our first three years of operation! Thank you Marcus!