Friday, May 30, 2008

The process of starting up YNPN San Diego

Emily and I have provided consulting to a number of start-ups in our own consulting practices EDA Consulting and Nonprofit Management Employment Alternatives, however for me, this is the really exciting part--to be in the trenches creating an organization.

When Emily and I met for the first time a little over two months ago we never thought that YNPN San Diego would gain so much momentum so quickly. A couple of nights ago we had our first ever informal board meet up. It is great to be with people who are just as passionate about nonprofits as we are.

This has been a learning process for all of us. We now have five official board members and we are a team. We are learning how to communicate with one another, what our strengths and weaknesses are, what we have and don't have capacity to do. We are truly trying to create a sustainable organization as Emily put it, "something that will continue without us." It has been fun and challenging. For example at first we thought we would assign people to board positions and then over time we realized it would be best for people to see what their interests are, what they have capacity to do and then in a few months people will find a fit with the board position that works best for them. This just one of the many adjustments that we have made along the way.

So far we have:
-Created our website/listserv/marketing materials
-Filed LLC Paperwork
-Had our first successful meet and greet event with over 50 people in attendance!!

Now we are planning to:
-Have our first official board meeting
-Recruit a few more board members and many more committee members
-Create a formal plan and goals for the rest of the year
-Get fiscal sponsorship
-To Apply for 501c3 status

If you are in the process of started or already started your own nonprofit, what was it like? Have you experienced some of the challenges we have? We'd love to hear about your experiences.

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