Nonprofit Day in LA Next Steps Nonprofit Day in LA 2022 - Outcomes

Nonprofit Day in LA - The Conversation So Far

On November 30, 2022, CNM and hundreds of civic leaders celebrated Nonprofit Day in LA. The discussions focused on the essential role nonprofit service providers play to meet the needs of County residents and the challenges organizations face to meet those needs. After reviewing the Nonprofit Bill of Rights, the attendees developed three priorities and gathered issue-focused action items to address in 2023

In January of 2023, we reconvened to continue the conversation and focus on developing strategic solutions for these three priorities which are detailed below.

Priorities and Strategic Solutions

Priority: Fund and foster collaboration among Organizations and/or Sectors (Private, Public, Philanthropic & Nonprofit) to increase budgets, strengthen capacity, and ensure sustainability for Nonprofits to address Community Needs.

  • Awareness building & building connections: Have information (technical and process related) on how to get involved in nonprofits and connect with philanthropy.
  • Outreaching for awareness (County, City): Bring awareness for what a nonprofit is trying to achieve.
  • Access and awareness to resources (i.e. grants):
    • Such as on workshops or guidance on key stakeholders/contacts to connect with to gain access and obtain necessary information.
    • Remove barriers to navigating systems.
    • Provide resources on how to build the right relationships within the system and tap members in networks of organizations.
  • Build a network of nonprofits that will facilitate the building relationships & collaborations.
  • Volunteering time to help organizations in the system and build relationships. Focus on how to help each other, how to show up to support one another, and how learn from each other
  • LinkedIn profiles and networking: have certain forums for conferences to network. (Example: This has been a way to find like-minded stakeholders for collaboration.)
  • Partnership with SoFi: Allowing support for grassroots organizations (i.e., with fundraising, collaboration with other organizations, providing support when resources are limited and/or there are barriers to private funding.)
  • Uplifting other organizations through partnerships and shared experiences.
  • Partnering with local agencies and hosting outreach events.
  • Partnering with LA County departments and promoting the County’s and other CBO’s resources and services that addresses the health needs of communities.
  • Centralize a list of cohorts and distribute to nonprofits to help them navigate these collaborations.
  • Convene more Nonprofit and CBO cohorts to network, share opportunities, and strategize. This effort could be led by the County or ones like Nonprofit Day (via CNM).
  • Grassroots cohorts can be very effective. They coordinate on policies and practices. Networking is key in these cohorts, especially with sharing resources and client referrals across services.

Priority: Leverage Nonprofit Bill of Rights to change necessary systems and policies that cause barriers to Nonprofits providing services.

  • Political empowerment & engagement: Empower nonprofits to have equal opportunity to provide services as other sectors (i.e. corporate).
  • Better legislation/political engagement: Work with the legislative chain of command toward better outcomes. 
  • Distribute the Nonprofit Bill of Rights to lobbyists and public officials.
  • Share/advocate for nonprofit work and/or bills with local commissions (i.e. County Probation Commission-Probation Oversight Committee), boards, neighborhood councils, etc. Get on these groups’ calendars.
  • Media messaging: Invite local media/social media to community meetings. Connect with podcasts.
  • Sharing experiences/knowledge in partnership with other sectors so that they are aware of the Nonprofit Sector’s barriers in attaining funding, resources, capacity strengthening services, etc.
  • Connect with BIPOC communities and hear/leverage their experiences in rooms with partners and stakeholders.
  • Engage in discussions with the City Council in this time of change and with our new Mayor in order to engage them in supporting nonprofits as essential partners.
  • There is a lot of funding currently in the bills the Governor has recently signed. There needs to be some sort of crosswalk of all state funding coming to LA to help the Nonprofit Sector navigate and access those dollars.

Priority:Collect and amplify data, stories, and messaging to advocate for the true impact of nonprofit sector as a driver/expert in addressing community needs and outcomes.

  • Identify local longitudinal impact (i.e. pre/post effects from program exposure and connection to recidivism) & share data within networks.
  • Communicate/build relationships with public departments to access/obtain data.
  • Collaborate with other nonprofits and share experiences, resources, and offerings.
  • Have a centralized website to allow nonprofits to come and submit their data and stories to carry forward the impact of the Nonprofit Sector’s essential role. Identify who would be the aggregator/supporter of this effort.
  • Add capacity-strengthening grants to help nonprofits tell their stories.

Issue-Focused Action Items Identified During Nonprofit Day in LA

Mental Health - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Investment and implementation of Nonprofit Staff Mental Health, Wellness and Wellbeing.
  • Broader and more inclusive discussions about Mental Health for all. 
  • Equitably connecting resources and services to BIPOC and underrepresented communities who have historically not had access to Mental Health care.  
  • Expansion of the 988 hotline:  
    • Staffing and providing in person crisis as needed locally (crisis support teams). 
    • Increased quick crisis response. 
    • Collaboration with nonprofits orgs outside of law enforcement to address mental health crisis. 
  • Working with Department of Health Care Services to create recommendations for services: 
    • To increase access to care for BIPOC and Underserved Communities.  
    • There will be listening sessions to formulate the recommendations that we all can participate in. 
  • Convening funders, organizations and people who are interested in engaging to address: 
    • Reaching folks who historically have not had access to mental health care. 
    • The level of staff burnout is unprecedented:  
      • How can people support their staffs and wellbeing? 
      • How can we support our mental health staff? 
      • Advertising and allowing people to take advantage of the services. 

Justice Reform - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Fund organizational collaborative efforts to break silos; fund collaborative strategies, organizing, fundraising, planning processes. 
  • Mobilize the nonprofit sector to be more vocal around lack of inclusivity in county contracting processes, demanding new equitable and inclusive contracting processes, and pushing the county to expand whom they want to work with.
  • Advocate for more participatory budgeting and participatory grant-making opportunities to elevate community voice around the distribution of resources/services. 
  • Provide funds and support to meet immediate needs of the community, especially those who are recently released 
    • Advocate for public dollars and keep it within communities, particularly CBOs serving youth.  
  • Fund and foster collaboration among organizations to increase budgets, strengthen capacity, and ensure sustainability. 
    • Use Measure J dollars to fill gaps in services revealed through the implementation of county programs, institutions. 
    • Integrate health and wellness into organizing. 
    • Explore and adapt to multiple strategies of connecting to allow for multi-pronged approaches where community voice remains central (1:1 connections and relationship building) 
  • Elevate models (Ready to Rise, trust-based philanthropy) that push for the county to restructure how it does business and adjust its current policies/practices that perpetuate racism, discrimination, and burden on CBOs and communities. 
    • New RFP to continue Ready to Rise will be out soon, so be on the lookout.  

Food Justice - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Policy and advocacy – Bringing service providers, Philanthropy, Government offices together to make sure food is on all of their agendas.  
    • Organize cross sector collaborations on legislative days.  
  • Support (and fund) collaborations at the org/agency level to support new and existing efforts to bring food security to communities. Broader way for folks to come together.  
    • Collaborate across sectors with storytelling.  
    • Philanthropy supporting this fundraising. 
    • Compensate those who are sharing that story.  
    • Utilizing trusted infrastructure/sources that already exist (schools, hospitals, community clinics, food pantries).  
    • We need a stronger systems approach and include in disaster preparedness plans.  
  • Give the new generation opportunities to work with current programs to bring in new ideas and work outside the box.   
  • Changing the model of reimbursement so we can spend more than 20% on infrastructure. 
  • Read and leverage “Los Angeles County Food Equity Roundtable Action Plan” Report 
    • Not losing the momentum of current roundtable collaboration and where do we put our resources next.  
    • Engage philanthropy to discuss how food security can be covered in media more effectively.  
  • Bread Head LA – 8 Week course that is self-paced (paid for) for lower income families to purchase groceries and learn how to make healthy meals. No restrictions as not government funded. Complements food banks who give the food. 
  • Breastfeed LA – A lot more awareness of need due to the recent formula shortage. Breastfeeding is not prioritized enough in the food security space.   

Youth & Family Services - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Work with CNM on Nonprofit Bill of Rights, promote awareness, and push implementation and applicability.
  • Partnering with state and local government in order to tap into resources and funding.  
  • Extended learning opportunities program: Link below.
  • Youth commission, to have youth who have been part of the juvenile justice system in order to have a voice in what we are doing.  
  • Family First Prevention Services Act, where are there potential funding streams that we need to be aware about.  

Public Health - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Prevailing wage language (prosperous wage) and Full Cost adequate reimbursement – looking at federal poverty standards as a place to start.  LAC base of funding should be starting to implement this language.  Say no to contracts that do not support this language.
  • Advocating to uplift and amplify Community experienced voice at table.
  • More solidarity across organizations with shared funding opportunities.
    • Reduce burden of silos in funding agencies and departments. Continue to streamline funding processes.
  • Intentionally making space for voices of those directly impacted to be lifted and amplified.
    • Across Sectors (Philanthropy, Government, Private & Nonprofit)
    • Community experts need to be at table – example to expend community health workers – but none of the orgs interested was able to apply
  • Community Health Workers – new RFP offered to expand the program.
    • Vision y Compromiso suggested as a resource.
    • Policy system Change and Environmental Change

Housing - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Prevention Efforts: More resources moved towards prevention of homelessness to avoid crisis/trauma created, shifting mindset around affordable and workforce housing.
  • More collaboration/partnerships between housing providers and other social services (i.e. jobs, social, housing).
    • Understand wrap around services and the impact on housing.  
  • Easier access to federal grants/assistance provided to smaller organizations to obtain funds (i.e. federal government providing a grant writer to assist) 
  • County motion to renew the CLT program. In addition, a land banking motion to take property off the market and hold land until there is a viable opportunity for affordable housing.
  • Measure ULA that passed which includes funds for alternative models for financing and developing affordable housing. Great place to have meaningful ownership roles in developments. 
    • Similar to county, looking at ways to sole source and finance these types of projects. 
  • Proposition LH: Increases cap on the number of affordable housing units that can be built.  
  • Local vacancy taxes: Make it more expensive for investors who do not live in our city and hold properties vacant as a way to increase their wealth.  
  • Project Room key: Link below. 
    Eviction Protections: Prepare for the potential wave of increased evictions because of eviction protections being lifted. Continue to work with legal service providers and prepare tenants for challenges they will face:   
    • Build a pathway for attorneys and paralegals to come on board. 
    • Resources for tenants to defend themselves against unlawful detainers/kit. 

Equitable Funding - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Centralizing contracts and re-bundling disbursement practices & Decentralize resources to more small, new emerging nonprofits, and focus on capacity building 
  • Culture change within the County – ultimately having a general changes in the way that Department Directors are measured by the Board in terms of success or achieving goals (i.e., measure what has been done to achieve equity in county contracting, how is it changing, where are they located, etc.) – Departments have to be part of the focus too!
  • Advocating constantly for better/fair pay at weekly board meetings – organize nonprofit advocators  
  • Strategies:
    • Economic Resiliency Task Force → Equity in County Contracting 
    • DHS model > LAHSA (complicated contracts) 
  •  $1.9 billion ARP funds came through the county
  • Opportunity of revolving loan funds to be distributed equitably 
  • Culture change within County. 
    • Transformative work happening in contracting and payment structures. 
  • Recognizing that funding opportunities inherently have been racist and unequal – call out these disparities and have the public put pressure on govt.  
  • Establishing trust & acknowledging distrust in existing systems 

Education - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Data sharing – how do we use data to make better decisions; noting there is no universal rubric and entities are competing against each other 
  • Equitable access to use culturally appropriate resources 
  • Adult education (as an underserved group) both for parents navigating systems and older adults seeking pathways. 
  • $18 M for K-16 collaboratives – focused on STEM, healthcare, education to institution partnerships, etc.  What can we do to make sure high schools are taking advantage of available opportunities?  Budget deficit coming 
  • $500 M, 10 years for institutions. Employer connectivity. Pay work structure. Building relationship with employers. 
  • Investment in Golden State Pathways: 80 school districts taking advantage. Opportunity to build connections with colleges and CBOs. 
  • $200M statewide investment in dual enrollment – school districts connecting with LACCD / colleges about how their students are ready and getting what they need.  
  • Adults Education:  Two types- 1) Educate parents on higher education, especially in underserved communities; Part of the trend here is taking a holistic approach- focusing on the whole household. Navigating the college system. 2) Older Adults needing resources for college, connecting with trade schools and more. Making sure the process is culturally relevant. 
  • Change in leadership, new voices emerging – 33% new state leadership; new mayor; new LAUSD lead – new initiatives; nonprofits popping up or moving into influence in the sphere:  Nonprofits need to introduce themselves to these new leaders to show them what is possible.  Banding together – our influence is collective; working together is key.  
  • Amplify cross-sector collaboration essential.  Make sure you are working toward the goals but how do we track outcomes?  How are we tracking impact? We measure, collect data in silos – what are the datasets we need to better determine the quality of programs / services / investments for the future?   Is there an opportunity to share information and resources?  Make sure we are sharing the right information with funders.    

Economic Development - Action Items and Upcoming Opportunities

  • Ensure organizations have work plans, understand the changing economy, and introduce skill-building workshops into organizations.
  • Operationalize equity and inclusion, challenge the way funder’s fund – important to understand strategies and know how, includes steps to overcoming digital divide and providing access to broadband.
  • Collaboration is key – how do we work together and not in silos, we are stronger together (vs competing with each other or gatekeeping) help smaller nonprofits grow capacity. Fund collaboratives help bring coalitions and initiatives together.  
  • Understanding what is happening in the larger economy and strategizing between employers & employees.  Access procurement opportunities.   Readying employees for what is happening, tied to tech, clean energy, infrastructure, STEM opportunities, for labor pool to earn a living wage vs. a job that doesn’t keep up with inflation, make sure workforce has the training, education, program that enables them to take advantage of opportunities
  • Health/Mental Health departments have funding opportunities for economic development 
  • Opportunities to purchase buildings to bring economic development projects,  services to the community, creating resource hubs, wholesale approach to community & economic development  
  • Partnering with nonprofits and businesses.  Nonprofits are in the business of helping the community – Everything with $ is a business.   
  • Capacity building funding – importance of work plan, knowing what you have, knowing what is needed. 
  • Join CERF Los Angeles  
  • Engage with younger donors, new generations getting involved and engage. 
  • Contracting and procurement is a game changer for economic mobility and as an economic driver 

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Maura Harrington Ph.D., MBA

Executive Vice President
Center for Nonprofit Management

Maura is known for her expertise in organizational development and strategy and in all aspects of organizational development with a focus on strategic planning, assessment, and evaluation. At CNM, she oversees the client services team and provides consulting, training, and coaching services to a broad range of organizations. Much of her consulting and capacity-building work has been with community-based organizations and public health departments related to effective organizational operations, evaluation practices, and the use of logic models and other assessment tools to support planning, evaluation, and management. A BoardSource Trainer, a certified Advanced Associate, and a Trainer for the Connective Leadership Institute; Maura has completed certification as an executive coach under the International Coaching Federation. She holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from the Claremont Graduate School, an MBA from the Peter Drucker Graduate Management Center, a BS in Psychology from Georgetown University, and serves as an adjunct professor at USC’s School of Social Work and Department of Psychology. 

Speak With an Expert

Need expert advice? We're only an email or phone call away. Use this form to get in touch or call the Nonprofit Answer Hotline at the number listed below. You can also schedule a free, 15-minute appointment and we’ll match you with an in-house expert.








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CNM Nonprofit Hotline

Need expert advice? We’re only an email or phone call away. Use this form to get in touch or call the Nonprofit Answer Hotline at the number listed below.

You can also schedule a free, 15-minute appointment and we’ll match you with an in-house expert.








To select more than one item, hold Command on Mac or Control on PC.