I think it is fair to say the times we currently live in uncertainty is very real.  Uncertainty is the norm.  It is the unknown. Keeping people safe is a priority.  Keeping organizational talent to meet mission is essential.  We juggle the threats daily, working to ensure mission flows forward.  In doing the right things, this juggling can also keep us tied to the status quo.

However, I propose that status quo no longer serves us well.  Especially in the days, months and years ahead. Now is the time to courageously look at our work and ask the hard questions.  The world – our work – needs something different from us. The first, critical questions? 

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I challenge you to take the time to honestly reflect on your answers. And if you’ve answered these questions quickly, then I propose you are not doing the hard work.  Step back.  Assess.  Reimagine.  Redesign. The world has changed and will continue to change.  While this is nothing new, the speed of this change is beyond anything we may have anticipated.  And it asks more of us.  It asks us for clarity and hope.  It challenges us to not let uncertainty overwhelm and pull us up short.  It asks us for the certainty of doing what’s right.

I strongly believe our purpose in this, our social sector, is to truly solve problems that allow us to proudly proclaim “Mission Accomplished”!  We’ve created a better world!  We may evolve into a new kind of organization – if needed – but our purpose is not to sustain our existence but to drive and achieve social change. 

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If we agree that solving social problems is the priority, then this commitment also begs the bigger and more important questions.

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o   How do we foster REAL change? 

o   How do we measure that change?

o   What do we give up to do more and do better? 

o   What do we do new or differently to catalyze profound change?

o   How do we ensure effective, constructive and sustainable change? 

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If we think of our work as leading “movements for social change”, then we are compelled to build a new platform and approach to transforming communities through the arts, education, health, training and all ilk of social services that feed the mind, body and soul.  We will demand more of ourselves and our missions.  We will design systems that allow us to solve broader, more complex problems because we share a common goal – healthier and stronger communities.

We all benefit when we embrace social change.  We are all part of the collective.  And when we take this courageous step…one that can no longer wait…we lead our communities to fairness and justice.  The work is too critical to do otherwise.