Dedham non-profits create think tank

April 11, 2012 by  

In a historic move, Dedham non-profit groups and societies met recently to discuss how to support and encourage each other.

The newly established Dedham Shines, itself a non-profit group, brought 28 organizations together at an event held at the Endicott Estate, connecting highly established groups such as the Dedham Historical Society with those in their infancy, such as the Dedham Public Art Project which has only been in existence for a few months. Other participants included 4Cs for Kids, the Dedham Public Library and Dedham Square Circle.

Jennifer Barsamian, co-founder of the Dedham Shines, said the intention of the evening was to get the community and each other engaged. Approximately 60 people attended the evening event. A representative from each of the 28 organizations present gave a one minute elevator speech highlighting their mission and vision.

Many of the organizations, particularly the neighborhood-focused groups, have the same issues in common. How to find volunteers within their communities that are passionate about people and about the mission of the organization is just one example. Many volunteers join civic and charitable groups as it gives them a sense of purpose and belonging, and it helps to get to know their neighbors in a better way.

Print companies frequently work closely with grassroots, not-for-profit organizations which usually work with shoe-string budgets, offering them services from graphic design to brochures and even tax receipt booklets.

Time was allowed for those present to network and recruit new supporters. Organizers hope that more cooperative events will take place in the future.