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GFCF partners with Facebook to explore strategies for fostering community leadership

Putting the pieces together at the Bucharest Community Foundation’s leadership programme – photo courtesy of Corina Angelescu

For the past six months, the GFCF has been working in partnership with Facebook and an advisory group of funders on the broad topic of community leadership. Using surveys and interviews with a broad cross-section of funders (international and community level) we have been exploring a number of questions. They include:

  • What does community leadership look like and how can it best be supported?
  • How can we better understand the interplay between the role of individuals and organizations in advancing particular issues and / or strengthening their communities?
  • What role can funding play in supporting community leaders and their organizations?
  • What are some of the strategies that funders – of different types and size – are using to explore some of these questions?
  • How can digital technology and the opportunities that now exist to build communities online build on, and amplify, face-to-face community organizing?

In the second phase of the project, which is just getting under way, a group of GFCF partners will be using a series of small grants to test and explore some of these questions at the community level. Participating organizations are:

  • Bucharest Community Foundation (Romania): “Community Leadership Quick Fix” programme, building on their existing “Bucharest Power by People” initiative. US $12,550
  • Bulgarian Fund for Women: “Fostering community leadership initiative” to connect, support and increase the capacities of ten community leaders. US $19,000
  • Community Foundation for Northern Ireland : “Thriving Communities” will explore the feasibility of local neighbourhood based funds as a way to mobilize and disburse resources at the very local level. US $18,700
  • Kilimani Project Foundation (Kenya): “Strengthening Kilimani residents’ role in local governance and urban planning.” US $18,000
  • South Sinai Foundation (Egypt): “Social media as a strategy for community development” will build on the foundation’s outreach work with Bedouin women. US $10,000

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