Measuring the Impact of Communications

Many of us have fond memories of PBS, whether it be watching a documentary with family or engaging with development programs in school. PBS is continuing its mission to serve the American public with high-quality programming and services by launching the New Generation Initiative (NGI). The 18-month collaborative pilot spans six PBS stations across the […]

Reflections of a change agent: Sometimes you need to shut up and listen

Last summer, the Spark team was in one of our monthly all day team retreats. We use these conversations to ground ourselves in what matters about our work and stay true to our values. To begin the day, we watched parts of two Ted talks: The first talk helped us explore the concept of excellence, […]

Working with the Faith Community to Spark Social Change

This month, we’ve looked at how to use the private sector to scale change.  Now I want to shift the focus outside of the public/private realm and look at the role other groups can plan in creating meaningful change: specifically, the role the faith community can play in bringing attention to and energizing people around […]

Leaving the Abstract Behind: What Collective Impact Really Means

From reducing infant mortality to addressing climate change, Collective Impact work seems to be everywhere these days.  At Spark, we’ve been excited to get involved with Collective Impact efforts at all levels, from facilitating the planning process to being the backbone to providing evaluation support early in initiatives and in the later years as well. […]

Spark’s New Year’s Resolutions to Support Sustainable Change

Don’t you just love thinking up New Year’s resolutions? I know I do – they’re so full of the rich promise of that makes Change, capital C, so alluring. A fresh start – an opportunity to draw a line in the sand and say, “On the other side of this line, things will be different!” […]

Why you shouldn’t do this on your own: Making Your Stakeholder Engagement Process Successful

 Learning from the Coordinated Chronic Disease Project During my time in the public sector, I observed many stakeholder engagement processes that went really well and led to meaningful change. Unfortunately, I also process observed like this: Participants arrive. They have been told it’s an opportunity to provide input to an important planning process. After listening […]

This is going to take us 10 years! What do we tell our funders now?

Many things worth doing cannot be done quickly. Changing public policy systems, building communities, tackling complex social issues, and advocating for meaningful change are not things one undertakes and completes in a single year, three years, or sometimes even in ten years. Yet, at the same time, we all have funders and our funders need […]

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