Andy Crouch, Kurt Keilhacker, and Dave Blanchard, published an article in the early days of COVID-19 that you likely heard about. It is titled: Leading Beyond the Blizzard: Why Every Organization Is Now a Startup. It seemed to resonate with leaders in our network and was shared over 500,000 times more broadly.
If you didn’t read it, we highly recommend you do. They write;
“[Coronavirus] is not just something for leaders to “get through” for a few days or weeks. Instead, we need to treat COVID-19 as an economic and cultural blizzard, winter, and beginning of a “little ice age” — a once-in-a-lifetime change that is likely to affect our lives and organizations for years.”
Alas, here we are, 10 months into COVID-19 and (at least in Ontario) in a second strict lockdown. We are either in the bitter days of “winter” or at the beginning of a “little ice age”. Wherever we are, we need all the wisdom we can get to navigate 2021.
Many charities we speak with agree that 2021 will be harder than 2020--financially at least but perhaps emotionally and mentally as well. In light of this, we’ve compiled some resources we think will be helpful for you this year. Whether you’re a charity or a donor reading this, or simply an individual looking for some good tools to navigate the beginning of a New Year, we invite you to look through the list below and share with us any other resources that have proved useful for you.
We hope these resources will help us to see 2020 with another perspective and to be prepared to navigate through a new reality in 2021:
- Praxis is a creative engine for redemptive entrepreneurship, supporting founders, funders, and innovators motivated by their faith to renew culture and love their neighbors. They operate through high-touch programs, robust content, and a global portfolio of redemptive business & non-profit ventures. The Praxis Journal collects the stories of the ideas, models, practices, and people driving redemptive businesses today. One of their articles published is titled Strategies for Winter: Redemptive Leadership in Survival Times, in which the authors lay out 6 essential points, offering a roadmap for redemptive leaders seeking to survive winter by adapting and rebuilding for the ice age.
- Arrow Leadership is one of our trusted partners. They offer Jesus-centered programs, personal mentoring, organizational consulting, and resources to help leaders and organizations lead differently. Arrow has developed a set of free tools and resources called COVID-19: Toolkit to Lead Different, to provide timely, practical, biblically-anchored help during these challenging times, not only to the organizations and their teams, but also to people on a personal level with topics like Courage in Uncertainty, Finding Clarity, Overcoming Fear, and Opportunities in the Midst of Crisis, among others.
- The Faith Driven Entrepreneur is an informal initiative formed from the experiences of a group of people committed to their faith, and who believe that God uses entrepreneurs to bring about His Kingdom here on earth. Their mission is to help entrepreneurs who are hard at work on the trail, who are often tired, exhausted, under-resourced, and confused. They offer a daily blog, weekly podcast, top videos, and a collection of “Top 10” lists of books, reading plans, events, accelerators and places for Christian entrepreneurs to get provisioned for the journey. Among all the useful resources on their website, there are two blogs which we want to recommend especially, Leaving Behind the Storm with Andy Crouch and Dave Blanchard and The Authority and Vulnerability Paradox with Andy Crouch. Andy Crouch is a leader of the Faith Driven Entrepreneur conversation and partner for theology and culture at Praxis.
- Another of our trusted partners is Cardus. They are an independent think tank that emerged from a desire to translate the richness of the Christian faith tradition into the public square for the common good. Cardus produces research and publications for the express purpose of equipping communities and engaging in constructive dialogue, which is published in their magazines Convivium and Comment. We recommend Phillip Yancey’s thoughtful year-end reflection as a way to “look back” in a different light: The Longest Year – Reflections on 2020.
- The Canadian Christian Relief & Development Association (CCRDA), equips Canadian Christian relief and development organizations for excellence. They provide a forum where the best ideas, practices, and application of biblical principles mix to promote high-performance organizations seeking God’s purpose for the world’s poor. Among their resources, they offer monthly webinars to facilitate a mutual learning relationship, understanding that we are a community of Christ-centred organizations who desire to share skills, knowledge, and support one another. CCRDA is offering 4 webinars in winter 2021 on a range of topics we think might be helpful for you.
- The Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) provides data and creates insight so philanthropic funders can better define, assess, and improve their effectiveness, and as a result, their intended impact on non-profit organizations and the people and communities they serve. Foundations Respond to Crisis is a series of reports that examines the extent to which staffed foundations have changed their practices to meet the compounded crises of 2020. In these reports, CEP presents the results of surveys and interviews with U.S foundation leaders, to the questions: “What is actually changing in foundations’ practices? And what does this mean for the future?”
- Sanctuary Mental Health Ministries equips the Church to support mental health and wellbeing. They provide resources that meaningfully engage the topics of faith and mental health, to prepare communities of faith around the world to raise awareness, reduce stigma, support mental health, and promote mental wellbeing. Now, more than ever, we all need resources to support our mental health and the mental health of those around us. Sanctuary offers a variety of resources to use as we process the impact of COVID-19. Among their resources, they have discussion guides, video interviews, audio materials, and blog posts.
Let us know if any of these links have been helpful and if you have any other resources you’d like to share. You can email Stephanie Galla, Director of Operations, at firstname.lastname@example.org to further the discussion.