Happy 2023 NCN community! We hope everyone had a restful and joyful holiday season, and is feeling refreshed for the new year. Looking back on 2022, there were many new learnings that we’re bringing with us this year, and we are always grateful to our community for the consistent collaboration and exchanging of ideas. Some of these learnings included the tips below about community building that were shared at our last Regional Chapter Roundtables of 2022. Let’s see what we learned!
5 tips from NCN Winter Regional Chapter Roundtables:
1. Try a collaborative internship program
Have you ever heard of a shared internship? One center was able to get a grant to pay interns for an amazing internship program focused on their center theme. Among other benefits, the interns spoke about the value of being able to learn from several different nonprofits, as they work with various tenants, which makes it unique to other internships opportunities.
2. Use signage and screens to post center events
If you’re trying to boost attendance at events, try posting the upcoming event schedule on the signage or video screens in your center. It might be just the reminder someone needs as they walk through the door!
3. Grow your community through an annual event
Traditions – both big and small – can be one of the best ways to create community at a center. Members have shared ideas like an annual barbeque, picnic, cookie exchange, popsicle party, etc. You can include local vendors, sponsors, board members, and other external community members as a chance to share your work not only with your tenants, but with the community beyond your center as well.
4. Expand your guest list and have an “open house”
Inviting past tenants, current tenants, and prospective tenants to a fun “open house” type event can be a creative way to recruit new organizations for your space. Helping them see what other great organizations they’ll be in community with is what it’s all about!
5. Encourage your tenants to lead events
Inviting tenants to host events for the center is a way to build participation and investment, and can be added value for them, depending on what type of event it is.