Getting the Basics Right

A Letter from the Executive Director

Recently, CVN held its annual Program Formation Workshop, which helps those considering beginning a volunteer program or newly engaged in this work to learn the basics of managing a program. One guest speaker introduced the basics of development and mission advancement – but also reminded us about the basics of faith.

Sr. Georgette Lehmuth, OSF is President of the National Catholic Development Conference. She has been helping CVN think about growing our mission in ways that can help member programs. I knew she was knowledgeable and strategic. When she spoke to our group, I also learned how convicted she is about trusting relationship and mission.

Instead of focusing on techniques to increase donations, Sr. Georgette began her talk by inviting us to reflect on the importance Jesus placed on relationships that helped make His mission known and understood. She reminded us of Jesus asking his disciples: “Who do the crowds say that I am?” and “But who do you say that I am?” (Luke 9:18-20)

Jesus was trying to advance a mission, and he needed to know if His message was getting across. He knew why He came, and that His message was hard to grasp. Jesus was being strategic in assessing if people understood Him. And He was exploring that in the context of His deepest relationships. He needed the disciples to understand because they were to be a huge part of mission advancement.

CVN also faces challenges in communicating our mission and who we are. Therefore, we are focused in new ways on communicating our identity and offerings to potential volunteer applicants and partners, especially online. We know your goals, and believe we understand how new efforts, strategies, and ideas can help. But faith-based service programs are competing with many other offerings. If our presentation of what you offer isn’t clear and compelling, we must try new approaches. The effectiveness of our branding and messaging must match the strength of your mission.

In addition, our efforts must be understood by you! We are trying to share well and nurture relationship with you, so occasionally we need to pause and ask: What do you think of CVN?

I recently shared our new, three-year strategic plan. We need your perspective. Who is the CVN in those pages? What can we become? How does that speak to your mission? In my letter with the new plan, I note some ways you can help. Specifically, there is a series of Zoom video calls the week of April 8 that provide opportunities to reflect and explore (info is also below). I’d love to know who you think we are!

CVN is trying to trust the basics: relationship and mission. Please help us get those right.

With you in service,

Yonce Shelton
Executive Director

Zoom Video Call Times: Apr. 9, 10 and 11 at 2:00 pm EST

Join here:

Feel free to email questions ahead of time:

Can’t make one but want to? Ill try to offer more options. Let me know:

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