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Our Strategic Plan
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Strategic Goals 2015 - 2020

 

GOAL 1: The Association WILL LEAD, WITH AND FOR ITS MEMBERS, EFFORTS TO INFLUENCE CRITICAL ISSUES AND IMPROVE COMMUNITY CONDITIONS.

 
The Association will continue to be the best forum for philanthropy to lead and realize the power of intentional collaboration. The shared interests and goals of our member organizations will continue to drive our service and our efforts to seek opportunities, both significant and incremental, with the potential to influence transformative change.
 
The work of the Association, to support donors in their giving, will continue to be at the core of our mission and services. Programs connect members to a range of philanthropic colleagues, national expertise and trends. Programs are designed to build awareness, deepen knowledge and professional practices, foster collaboration, and leverage the impact of member giving. The issue-area Affinity Group structure allows in-depth exploration of and impact on targeted community concerns. Through Affinity Groups, members become educated about the community, act on shared interests, discuss promising practices and common challenges, engage public officials and decision-makers and explore opportunities for collaborative action. Members increasingly desire action-oriented convening where they not only learn but also determine what actions they can take individually or together to make a difference on a critical issue.
 

GOAL 2: The Association WILL GROW AND STRENGTHEN A DIVERSE NETWORK FOR PHILANTHROPY IN MARYLAND.

 
The Association must forge a strong, diverse network supporting the aspirational goals of philanthropy by breaking down barriers and including new donors and partners, individuals and organizations, informing and energizing our efforts. Demographic trends in our State will present new leaders, new partners and new opportunities for our Association to consider who our next generation of members will be and how we will engage them in an agenda focused on transformative action. The Association’s Diversity and Inclusion Committtee will guide membership and network development strategies using a diversity and equity lens.
 
Since 1983, the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers has been Maryland’s home for foundations, corporations and grantmaking charities to learn and act together. More recently membership eligibility has recognized new types of philanthropies, such as community foundations, donor advised funds and giving circles. To achieve our purpose of maximizing the impact of philanthropic giving on community life, the Association will continue to adapt to the ever evolving landscape of philanthropy. This landscape includes endowed and personal giving as well as partners from the nonprofit, corporate and government sectors. The landscape also includes new strategies such as crowd-funding and impact investing. The forms of philanthropy combined with the traditional work of an Association: convening, sharing expertise, research and policy advocacy enable an increasingly strong network able to apply "capital”, in all its forms, for public good. It is our belief that growing a broader, more diverse, network for philanthropy in Maryland will serve our members and provide new opportunities to maximize their collective impact on community life.
 

GOAL 3: The Association WILL CREATE A STRONG BRAND PROMOTING THE ORGANIZATION, MEMBERS AND THE PHILANTHROPIC SECTOR.

 
The Association must strengthen its role as a central resource and convening space for all forms of philanthropy, driven by issues many of which are regional or statewide. By maximizing our unique ability to convene a broad range of stakeholders; to be a voice, to lead public discourse and to influence governance and policy we will strive impact the challenging social issues that affect our communities.
 
The Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers has used a variety of communication tools and strategies to promote the organization, the work of members, raise the voice of philanthropy and build awareness of the philanthropic sector. As the Association’s network has grown by geography and type of philanthropy, so has the need to consider our brand and value to those diverse members, prospective new members and partners we seek to engage. The Association’s relevance will be promoted and sustained by growing strategic, effective, collaborative giving across the state, and by positioning the expertise of members as a primary resource to public policy, government and community leaders.
 

GOAL 4: The Association WILL ENHANCE THE MEMBER EXPERIENCE.

 
The Association must continue to meet the evolving needs of its current members, new members and partners engaged in a broader network for philanthropy. Technology will challenge us to balance its use while maintaining authentic relationships and the power of peer to peer connection and learning. Using technology as a tool to enhance member value we will strive to keep pace with today’s expectations of instant response, results, and information; acknowledge that members have more options for information, technical assistance and idea sharing as infrastructure groups continue to grow and specialize; and to engage current and new members who are increasingly busy and value their time differently.
 
The Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers has always adapted new technology to connect with members and distribute timely information, but technology continues to affect the expectations of members and the capacity of the Association to do its work. Today the Association represents a statewide geography and diverse members, spanning multiple generations of technology users. Working locally and with our national network, the Forum of Regional Associations of Grantmakers, the Association can leverage technology investments to do more with its small staff, add value to membership and put virtual connectivity to work for learning and collaborative action. Many common technologies today did not exist during the previous strategic planning process, and the future pace of change will be even more rapid.
 
Download the full 2015 - 2020 ABAG Strategic Plan
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