This fall Buzzy’s Bees utilized a grant to make an investment in our organization by engaging Kheoshi Owens of Empress Rules for a Racial Equity Training and Melissa Jaffe of Blissness School for a Strategic Planning session.
The Racial Equity Training was the first time we took the opportunity to invite all of our volunteers, artists, writers, and partners to a single shared meeting. Being together (online) had value in itself, however, the real learning and work that took place among the 13 attendees was truly invaluable. We explored how foundational concepts around social justice, diversity, and loss have distinct meanings yet are inextricably intertwined. An understanding of these concepts gives us a shared language and helps us in our work in bereavement. Cross committee conversations around substantive topics like building an anti-racist organization was the perfect lead-in to our strategic planning session that took place the following day.
The Strategic Planning Session included a smaller, core group of board and key committee members. We are so grateful to have had the dedicated time for conversation and brainstorming about our strategic focus on growth and impact. The opportunity to share ideas and talk through shifts in responsibilities resulted in shared clarity of important next steps for growth.
A few examples of things we have already begun to implement as a result:
- We identified, extended an offer, and received acceptance of a new board member who will serve as Treasurer. Stay tuned for that official announcement!
- We are working on building volunteer and paid position descriptions for several roles. From as small as a Newsletter Editor volunteer role to as large as (a stretch goal!) for a full or part time Executive Director.
- We have a shared goal of establishing Committee Charters and newly creating discrete Sub-Committees, both of which will aid in engaging new volunteers.
- Our lead writer will serve in an official Editor capacity for the upcoming Give Grief a Voice season which will provide more continuity between the family experience.
- We are following a couple of leads for donated office/storage space which will address the need for a place for the artwork to ‘live’ after receiving it from the artist but before hosting our family reveal event in the fall.
It is with sincere gratitude to an anonymous donor and advisor for their guidance around organizational maturity and the financial support allowing us to make this possible.
Sharing this positive momentum with our entire hive (this includes you, reader!) is important to us. Please join us in celebrating these organizational milestones. We look forward to the coming year and all of the growth that it may bring!