Your Organization was Likely Started to Solve a Problem for One Community
Starting in the late 1800s and moving through today, communities have been developing summer camps as a means to solving a problem. Some camps were started to increase appreciation of nature; others to provide a space for faith based education; still, others to teach specific skills. The community saw a need and created the camp to fill it. It was that simple.
Over time, each of those camps has had to decide, “Will we continue to serve only that community and fulfill the same need, or will we evolve?” Some camp leaders have never actually stopped to ask or answer that question. They have simply evolved a little at a time.
Now, as COVID has hit us all hard and many camps are taking a hard look at the next chapter of the organization, it’s time for all of us to step back and review our mission and vision.
Let’s start with some definitions:
Mission – the fundamental reason an organization exists.
Vision – what the world looks like if the mission is accomplished.
Our mission is to provide food for the hungry in our local community. Our vision is healthy, vibrant families who can live their best lives.
As You Have Grown to Serve More than One Community, how has Your Mission & Vision Evolved?
Often, when we lead these conversations with camp leaders, we start by asking, “What are your mission and vision?”
COVID has given us an opportunity to stop the hamster wheel of tweaking programs, adding this and that, pushing a bit harder and talking a bit louder. It has forced us to stop and look at who we are, who we serve, and what problem we solve. It is the responsibility of camp leadership to ask and answer tough questions.
Start by acknowledging who that original community was that started your organization and the problem that you solved at that time. Then, ask yourselves, “which communities do we serve now and what is their greatest need?” Dive deep. Ask hard questions. Get comfortable acknowledging that you don’t have all the answers.
This process, when laid on top of your current place, programs, people and purposes, should reveal to you some new ways of thinking.
Perhaps you might discover that relying solely on overnight summer programs is no longer filling the primary need of the communities you serve and that you need to decrease the number of those programs and add a different set of weekend programs throughout the year. Maybe you’ll realize that what started as a small camp to serve the local United Methodist churches has evolved to serving many denominations state-wide, and you need to adjust your messaging to accommodate this shift. Perhaps you’ll realize that your camp is in a unique position to solve a new, emerging problem in your local community.
It is only through strategic conversations and an openness to new ideas that you’ll find the right path forward for your organization.
Having those Strategic Conversations
Unfortunately, we can’t just hop on the phone and guide you to a refreshed mission and vision statement. It does require intentional time set apart, the right people, and a process that ensures you have considered all the right factors.
Here’s how we guide this process:
- A full assessment of your organization’s health. We’ll look at finances, staffing, programs, marketing, facilities, site, and operational wellness.
- Facilitated conversations (led by us) with a range of stakeholders. We’ll dig deep into who you want/need to serve and how. We’ll challenge the status quo and find paths forward that are intentional and thoughtful.
- Decision-making and implementation. Once decisions are made, we’ll work with you to determine how to implement. In some cases, we’ll even continue our work with you to support this.
Kaleidoscope exists to help you thrive.
We would love to help lead a strategic planning process for your organization. Set up a call today to see if we are a good fit!