For nonprofits to reach their objectives, it is essential to form strong coalitions with people and organizations that share similar interests and goals. To do this, it is important to be aware of the relevant legislation, analyze news and analysis in depth, and know who the main stakeholders are. Wolff and colleagues (201) suggest that coalitions develop policy and promotion skills, which are not addressed to the same extent in the SCALE curriculum. The Government Relations Council (GRC), a New York nonprofit organization, meets monthly to consider and discuss legislative and regulatory developments affecting New York's nonprofit sector.
Coalition teams receive training on tools such as the Implicit Bias Test to facilitate conversations about racism in their coalition. To promote CEJ principles, self-reflection and courage are necessary, as well as new ways of relating, learning from failure, productive conflicts to explicitly address power, racism, and other forms of oppression, and methods for testing ideas for system improvement. Both Healthy Livable Communities of Cattaraugus County and SRW used the action lab to gain new partners, establish relationships within their communities, create a sense of urgency and momentum, and foster leadership capacity in their communities. Healthy Livable Communities of Cattaraugus County used a portfolio of projects to introduce system changes to improve population health and increase access to services for people with disabilities in rural New York State.
SRW applied the knowledge and skills acquired at SCALE to recognize and name structural inequalities in their communities. The New York nonprofit organization brings together voices from the industry to represent the issues that matter most to the industry. Peer coalition teams are encouraged to share their learning and advice about what worked in their efforts to address structural inequities in their community settings. Coalitions can be an important component of an organization's strategy when it comes to outreach and government relations work. In conclusion, participation in SCALE helped both coalitions approach their work in line with CEJ principles one, three, four, and six.
Building relationships with elected officials is essential for coalitions in New York City to achieve their goals. To maximize success when forming relationships with elected officials in NYC coalitions, it is important for nonprofits to understand the importance of policy and promotion skills. The Government Relations Council provides training on tools such as the Implicit Bias Test which can help facilitate conversations about racism within coalitions. Additionally, it is important for nonprofits to recognize structural inequalities within their communities and use action labs to gain new partners, create a sense of urgency and momentum, and foster leadership capacity. When forming relationships with elected officials in NYC coalitions, it is also important for nonprofits to understand the importance of self-reflection and courage. This will help them create new ways of relating, learn from failure, address power dynamics such as racism or other forms of oppression, and test ideas for system improvement. Finally, it is important for nonprofits to remember that participation in SCALE can help them approach their work in line with CEJ principles one, three, four, and six.
By understanding these principles and utilizing the resources available through the Government Relations Council or other organizations, nonprofits can build strong relationships with elected officials in NYC coalitions.