Call for Ideas Submissions Deadline: Wednesday, January 10th
The Call for Ideas is open! We need your help shaping the FCCP 2018 Convening agenda. In developing our Theory of Impact there was a strong call from members for FCCP to be “more war room, less trade show.” That is why this year it is critical that we not only hear your thoughts on content and big picture ideas, but also how we create interactive sessions throughout the convening, and provide opportunity for strategic discussion. For context about the type of discussions we plan to have in Denver please review the theme below; you can find the call for ideas submission form here and, as reference, you can click here to view our last Convening’s Agenda.
2018 Convening: Rising Together to Strengthen Our Democracy
The 2018 FCCP Convening is occurring during a time of important opportunities and unprecedented threats. We are witnessing an increase in engagement and activism. The resistance and populist movements across the political spectrum reveal a dissatisfaction and restlessness with the elite that has upheld the status quo of deep inequality and division. There is a hunger, and an opportunity, to challenge those who traditionally hold power, and change the story of who and what is at the center of our politics and our economy.
At the same time, low levels of civic participation, the steady erosion of our democratic systems, rising authoritarianism, uneven rule of law, and the loosening of protections for civil and human rights signal that we are failing to uphold many of the essential aspects of a democracy. These long-term downward trends toward less democracy, disavowal of or exclusion from electoral politics, and racial division are made visible to many more Americans by this moment of tremendous uncertainty and extremism. On the precipice of deeper crisis, is it possible to seize this moment to reverse these downward trends and catalyze a democratic renewal?
In this moment how do we, a network of grantmakers who share an underlying conviction that all people deserve a voice in our democracy and the decisions that impact their lives, invest financial and political capital to leverage opportunity in this crisis? What are the choices we as funders can make that will result in greater impact at the organizational and ecosystem levels? What practices are both transformative and equitable? Are there well-intended grantmaking practices that are actually hurting grantees? In developing the Theory of Impact, there was a strong call from members for FCCP to be “more war room, less trade show.” So, let’s have the strategic discussions necessary to create a healthy civil society, built on the values of equity and justice.
It is against this backdrop, that the FCCP community will convene in Denver, Colorado, a city, state and region that offers its own lessons. Investments in organizing in Colorado have been effective in achieving some big wins in the democracy space, but the urban versus rural divide creates significant challenges in statewide governance. With a divided legislature, many are now looking to direct democracy efforts, like ballot initiatives, to move policies like minimum wage and paid sick leave. With a focus on the Southwest we will draw inspiration from the communities of color and immigrant communities that lie at the center of the region’s economic, social and political vitality, as well as learn from the deep investments in infrastructure and alignment.
Let’s come together in May to be strategic about the critical questions facing our sector, re-energize ourselves, roll up our sleeves, be willing to be open and honest about our own shortcomings and failings, embrace collaboration, and collectively build what the field needs right now. In short, let’s come to Denver ready to rise together to strengthen our democracy.