I have been thinking about how difficult it has been for me to raise the funds that I need to get my non-profit off the ground and I realized that the common element that was missing from my fundraiser and for many advocacy groups out there is the same: We're missing the human element. Personal interaction inspires others and has a much better chance of making the person you are talking with emotionally invested in your project. All because you have put a face to your mission. When I realized this, I started planning out how I was going to get out there and talk to the local community about my efforts. I needed to put my face and my personal reputation on the line to make it happen.
It also made me realize that once I have organized and applied for 501(c)3 status, I need to keep this necessity in mind. It's getting boots on the ground that humanizes a project or advocacy effort. The internet and social media are excellent secondary tools to spread the word and promote advocacy, but if they are your primary means of reaching your constituency...
With this in mind, I will be focusing on "Boots on the Ground" (BOG) initiatives first to invest my local community in my message and the success of my non-profit. I will be planning a 5K in my area as a starting place. I will then use this proof of concept as a means for other communities around the country to become involved.
If you want to be some of those boots on the ground, please let me know. If you believe in my mission support its inception...and get in on the ground floor. Help me hit the ground marching.