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Grassroots Organizations Will Soon Come Together Online!

Posted By Claire McWatt, Grassroots Growth Coordinator, August-19-16
 Grassroots Growth Website

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

For the past year, Volunteer Toronto has been hard at work, finding new ways to spread volunteer management magic. The Grassroots Growth Project is a capacity-building initiative for volunteer-run non-profits in Ontario, and will provide free resources, tailored to the unique experience of grassroots groups. We are pleased to announce the launch of our website, on August 30th.

Tight on cash and other resources, grassroots groups struggle to access the non-profit sector best practices that help organizations manage volunteers effectively, fundraise, and execute strategic plans. The website will be a freely accessible space for groups to take advantage of different types of learning materials, and network with other groups from across the Province.

 Our 8 resource handbooks

During the research and development phase, our team engaged hundreds of groups from all different backgrounds, to learn about their unique needs and challenges. As a result of our report, we devised a set of training topics that cover everything from governance structures, to succession planning, burnout, and social media (and of course, volunteer management basics). What we learned is that volunteer management for volunteer-run groups is both the management of self, and the management of others.

Groups with no full-time paid staff and an annual budget of less than $75,000 per year, are welcome to join for free. They can then take advantage of our online resources, which include useful, editable templates, and a video series.

Not wanting to re-invent the wheel, we knew there would be a number of other free resources available online for groups, that were going unused simply due to lack of awareness. To address this, our team developed a Wiki Resource Directory that will house all kinds of links to helpful articles, websites, blogs and learning portals. Further, Grassroots Growth users can easily share other resources, by editing the Wikis and adding links.

GrassrootsGrowth Website Wiki wiki page 

Larger non-profits understand the benefits that can come from networking and partnering with other organizations. For grassroots groups, it can be hard to know who else is out there, and be able to share insight and support one another. The Grassroots Growth site has an interactive discussion forum, complete with a Peer Mentorship component, to allow groups to network, and learn from the experiences of those doing similar work. The forum will feature bi-monthly Reddit-style “Ask Me Anything” events, where users can speak with an experienced Grassroots Growth Peer Mentor, and get their important questions answered.

Look out for more great features for Grassroots Growth users, and new content, between September and April. To learn more or to become a Grassroots Growth Peer Mentor, contact Claire McWatt, Project Coordinator at


Claire leads the development of the Grassroots Growth project’s online community of practice, including the Peer Mentorship Forum and Wiki Resource Directory. She also manages relationships with Grassroots Growth partners, handles project administration, and collaborates with the Education Coordinator and Outreach Coordinator in research, training and outreach.

Tags:  community for grassroots group  discussion forum  grassroots groups  grassroots growth  grassroots organizations  online learning  wiki 

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